The Catholic University of America

May 7, 2015

Retiring Faculty Honored at Spring Luncheon

  Retiring faculty members are seen with University President John Garvey and Interim Provost Rev. Mark Morozowich.

The following Catholic University faculty members were honored during the Spring Faculty Luncheon May 5 at the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center:

Susanne Bennett,
associate professor, National Catholic School of Social Service
Bennett obtained her Ph.D. at Smith College School for Social Work, joined the NCSSS faculty in 2003, and became a tenured associate professor in 2009. She has had a long professional career as a clinical social worker in the mental health and health care arenas, initially working in the neonatal intensive care unit at Children's National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. Prior to joining the faculty at Catholic University, she was as an adjunct professor, research advisor, and supervisor at Smith, and an adjunct professor at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Social Work, where she taught human behavior theory and clinical practice for five years. Bennett’s research interests and areas of scholarship are centered on attachment processes within multicultural and nontraditional families and attachments within professional caregiving relationships.

Sister Ann Patrick Conrad,
associate professor, National Catholic School of Social Service
Sister Conrad has served on the faculty of the National Catholic School of Social Service (NCSSS) since 1985, serving as director of admissions, chair of the M.S.W. program, and dean of NCSSS for six years. An experienced agency and private clinical practitioner, she has conducted research and has taught courses in social policy analysis, theories of social justice, professional social work ethics, and the theory and practice of social work supervision and consultation. She received her B.S. degree from Spring Hill College, her M.S.W. from the University of North Carolina, and her doctoral degree from Catholic University. She is a licensed clinical social worker in Maryland and in the District of Columbia.

Leonard DeFiore, Brother Patrick Ellis Professor of Education, School of Arts and Sciences
DeFiore was appointed to the chair of the Brother Patrick Ellis Professor of Education in 2001 as its first occupant. He is past president and CEO of the National Catholic Educational Association (NCEA) and was the first lay person to lead the organization. Prior to joining NCEA, DeFiore served as superintendent of schools in both the Archdiocese of Washington and the Diocese of Metuchen, N.J. DeFiore studied at Columbia University, where he completed his doctorate in 1971. His most recent books include Weathering the Storm: Moving Catholic Schools Forward (2009) and The Story of the Storm: Catholic Elementary Schools from the 1960s to the Present (2011). He has received many awards for his educational leadership, including an honorary doctorate from the College of St. Elizabeth in New Jersey.

Richard Hassing, research associate professor, School of Philosophy.
Hassing earned a Ph.D. in theoretical physics from Cornell University, and worked for a dozen years on the professional staff of the Center for Naval Analyses. The focus of his research is the history of physics and philosophy of nature, the philosophical implications of the history of mathematics, and the role of natural philosophy in the constitution of modernity. His publications include articles on John Philoponus, Thomas Aquinas, Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Newton, and Darwin. He has also published a series of more systematic essays in which he explores tensions between modern natural science and the intelligibility of ordinary human experience. He will maintain his affiliation with the school and the University as a research associate professor, continuing to direct graduate students and teach occasional graduate courses.

Barbara Howard, associate professor of biology, School of Arts and Sciences
Howard has been an associate professor of biology and director of programs in clinical laboratory science since 1978. Her research interests have included the development of interdisciplinary approaches to teaching science to undergraduate non-science majors, audio-conferencing courses in clinical laboratory science to graduate programs throughout the country, improving science education in D.C. public schools, and environmental toxicology. Howard has received funding for her research from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the American Honda Foundation, and others. She has assumed leadership positions in clinical laboratory science at both the local and national levels and is the author of the reference textbook Clinical and Pathogenic Microbiology.

Hanna Marks, associate professor of German and associate dean, School of Arts and Sciences
After leaving her native Germany, where she studied English and Russian literature, Marks came to the Washington, D.C., area and completed a Ph.D. in Germanic languages, literature, and philology at the University of Maryland. Marks joined the CUA faculty in 1979 and was tenured in 1984. As the coordinator of the German program for many years, she defined the goals of the German major and served as advisor, teacher, and mentor to undergraduate and graduate students in the program. As associate dean of graduate studies in the School of Arts and Sciences for over 20 years, Marks was responsible for graduate students in all disciplines, aiming to admit the best and support them throughout their studies at CUA.

J. Michael Mullins, professor of biology, School of Arts and Sciences
Mullins obtained his bachelor’s in biology from Grinnell College in 1968. He served in the U.S. Army field artillery in Vietnam for two years before joining the Cell Biology Graduate Program at the University of Texas in Austin, receiving an M.S. in 1972 and a Ph.D. in 1975. He joined the CUA biology faculty in 1978, was promoted to professor in 1989, and served as a chair for two terms. His groundbreaking work on “midbody,” an organelle essential for cell division, was recently featured in the journal The Scientist, celebrating the modern renaissance of midbody research. He has also been involved in an Army-funded interdisciplinary research group studying the biological effects of electric magnetic fields at power line frequencies. Mullins served as an academic advisor throughout his 37 years of tenure, including five years advising undecided/exploratory students.

Mary Paterson,
coordinator for assessment and professor, School of Nursing
Paterson earned her B.S.N. from CUA, completed a master’s degree in nursing from Georgetown University, and a Ph.D. program from the University of California, Berkeley. An expert in healthcare finance, population health, biostatistics, and health policy, Paterson joined the School of Nursing faculty in the School of Nursing in 2005. She rose to the rank of professor and has held positions as the director of undergraduate nursing programs and associate dean for academic affairs. She is currently the assistant dean for assessment and evaluation.

Irene Sagle,
professor of chemistry, School of Arts and Sciences
Slagle received a B.A. in chemistry from St. Joseph College in Emmitsburg, Md., in 1966, and earned her Ph.D. in 1973 from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago under the guidance of her mentor, David Gutman. Slagle is recognized as the cofounder of the photoionization mass spectrometer, which is used to investigate the kinetics and mechanism of extremely fast reactions. She was appointed as an associate professor of chemistry in 1994 and promoted to professor in 2000. She has been awarded over $700,000 in funding from the National Science Foundation, has authored numerous publications, and has been reviewed in professional journals.

Rev. Paul Sullins, associate professor of sociology, School of Arts and Sciences
Father Sullins attained his Ph.D. in sociology from Catholic University in 1997 and joined the faculty in 1998. He was promoted to the rank of associate professor in 2005. A sociologist of religion, Father Sullins is known for studies of gender, sexuality and religion, including women clergy, abortion behavior, and, most recently, children raised by same-sex parents. For the past eight years he has directed the Summer Institute of Catholic Social Thought, a program for university faculty worldwide, and in 2008 published Catholic Social Thought: American Reflections on the Compendium. Sullins also serves as the American representative to the Pontifical Council on the Family for research preparing for the World Meeting of Families in September.



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