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New Faculty and Staff 2015

Brief Bios of our New Faculty and Staff in the College of Public Service - September, 2015

Please join me in welcoming our newest faculty and staff in the College of Public Service. As this is the first time for me to do this, I want to include this who joined us in the Spring, 2015 semester as well as those who are joining us in the Fall, 2015 semester. I know that you who have worked with me are well aware of the talents and credentials of the individuals who have joined the College of Public Service in the spring semester, and/or those who will joins us in the fall semester. I want to extend my great appreciation to the individuals in our College and across the University who served on the Search Committees associated with these key positions. 

- Leigh Van Horn, Ed.D.

Interim Dean, College of Public Service

Crystal Belle, Ph.D., M.P., M.S., Assistant Professor, Urban Education

Crystal Belle holds a Doctor of Philosophy Degree and a Master's Degree in English Education from Columbia University, a Master's Degree in Secondary English Education from Pace University, and a Bachelor's Degree in English Literature from Middlebury College. While attaining her initial degree she studied French literature at La Sorbonne Nouvelle-Universite de Paris III. Crystal Belle graduated from Columbia in May, 2015. Prior to that she was an educational consultant for Young Audiences of New York and a Literacy Coach and Senior Professional Development Specialist for the Center for the Professional Education of Teachers. Dr. Belle's recent publications include: From Jay-Z to Dead Prez: Examining presentations of Black masculinity in mainstream v. underground Hip-Hop in the Journal of Black Studies and Woman on fire

Lori Brusman-Lovins, Ph.D., M.S.W., Assistant Professor, Criminal Justice

Lori Brusman-Lovins holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Criminal Justice and a Master of Social Work from the University of Cincinnati, and a Bachelor's Degree in Psychology from the University of Cincinnati. While engaged in her doctoral studies she was the first doctoral candidate to be offered and to accept a position as a full-time Research Associate in the University of Cincinnati Corrections Institute. She comes to us from the Harris County Community Supervision and Corrections department where she was the Director of Clinical Services. Dr. Brusman-Lovins' recent publications include: Staff quality and treatment effectiveness: An examination of the relationship between staff factors and the effectiveness of correctional programs in Criminal Justice Quarterly and Implementation of evidence-based practices: A structured process in Report on Emotional Behavioral Disorders in Youth

Kevin Buckler, Ph.D., M.S., Associate Professor, Criminal Justice

Kevin Buckler holds a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Cincinnati, a Master's Degree in Criminal Justice from Eastern Kentucky University, and a  Bachelor's Degree from Sullivan University in Paralegal Studies. He comes to us from Prairie View A&M University, and prior to that. the University of Texas at Brownsville. Dr. Buckler's recent publications include: The newsworthiness of U.S. Supreme Court criminal procedure cases (1994-2010) terms): Assessing the effects of case salience and case complexity across elite and populace press in Criminal Justice Review and the James L. Maddex, Jr. Paper of the Year Award-Winning piece. U.S. Supreme Court decisions in the Fourth Amendment cases (1961-2009): A test of the legal subculture, democratic subculture, negotiation/synthesis, resource capability, and social background hypotheses in Criminal Justice Review

Paulina Gamino, B.A., Web Technical Specialist, College of Public Service

Paulina Gamino holds a Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics from the University of St. Thomas. She is proficient in image and audio editing software, several programming languages, multimedia software and multiple Microsoft applications including SharePoint Designer. She is an e-learning specialist who has experience in working in the classroom and in one-to-tone training. She has written technical manuals for various software programs and designed and performed computer-based courses and quality assurance tests in course and design standards. Ms. Gamino is also fluent in Spanish. 

Angela Goins, M.S.W., Lecturer, Social Work

Angela Goins holds a Master of Social Work Degree from the University of Houston and a Bachelor's Degree in Arts and Sciences-Communications with minors in the Theology and English from the University of St. Thomas. She has recently been accepted to a doctoral program in the School of Social Work with a focus on Teaching as Practice, a joint program with St. Catherine University and the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. Angela is one of the only twenty candidates accepted into the program this year. Prior to joining us as a Lecturer in Social Work, Angela Goins was an Adjunct Instructor in Social Work and a Program Supervisor for the Adult Protective Services - Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. She has received numerous awards for her supervision and case work including the Supervisor of the Year Award from Adult Protective Services in 2009 and 2013. Angela Goins' publications include: The role of the interdisciplinary geriatric assessment in addressing self-neglect of the elderly in Generations: Journal of the American Society on Aging

Stephanie Karas, M.S., Lecturer, Criminal Justice

Stephanie Karas holds a Master's Degree in Criminal Justice from Boise State University and a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science/Legal Studies from California State University. She is currently working on a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in Criminal Justice at Sam Houston State University where she held a position as a research assistant and teaching fellow. She completed her course work for the doctoral degree this summer. In years prior, Stephanie Karas advised students and served as a lecturer for California State University and as an adjunct for Boise State University. Stephanie Karas' publications include Supreme Court 2010 point-counterpoint: Kentucky v. King: The Supreme Court invites unwarranted police entry in Criminal Justice Studies

Diane Miller, Ph.D., M.A., Assistant Professor, Urban Education

Diane Miller holds a Doctor of Philosophy Degree from Texas A&M University in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis on Reading and Language Arts, a Master's Degree from Texas A&M in English, and a Bachelor's degree form the University of Texas in English Government. She has served as an Adjunct Instructor, and then a Lecturer in the Department of Urban Education since 2010. Prior to that she was a Reading Workshop Intervention Teacher, Campus Curriculum Instructional Strategist and Secondary Reading Coach for Cypress-Fairbanks Independent School District. Dr. Miller's recent publications include: The quality of recent studies in content area writing in secondary classrooms in Literacy Research: Theory, Method, and Practice and Writing tasks in content-area instruction: A systematic review of the literature in The Review of Educational Research.

Vivian Smith, A.A., Administrative Assistant I, Social Work

Vivian Smith holds an Associate Degree in Computer Technology from M.T.I. College of Business and Technology. She also studied communications at Texas Southern University and business at the University of Houston-Downtown. Prior to joining us as the Administrative Assistant I for Social Work, Vivian Smith attained a multitude of experiences including conference planning, records maintenance and preparation of training manuals. She worked as an Administrative Assistant for the MacGregor Clinic, Texas Orthopedic Hospital, Greater Houston Area Health Education Center and Frenchy's Chicken, Inc.