News Archives: Academic Affairs

HPU awards honorary Doctor of Humanities degree to El Paso’s Richard W. Nassar

Dr Richard Nassar for webBROWNWOOD – February 25, 2016 – Howard Payne University recently granted its highest honor, the honorary Doctor of Humanities degree, to Richard W. Nassar of El Paso. Dr. Nassar was awarded the degree during the university’s fall Commencement ceremony in December.

Dr. Nassar was born in Lebanon and immigrated to the United States in 1975. He is an active member and ordained deacon of El Paso’s First Baptist Church. Dr. David Lowrie, senior pastor of the church and former member of HPU’s Board of Trustees, wrote a letter to Dr. Bill Ellis, university president, recommending Dr. Nassar for this honor.

“As a Christian businessman he looked for ways to use his professional and personal influence to advance the cause of the Christ in the world, especially in El Paso,” wrote Dr. Lowrie. “He helped many people escape the dangers of persecution by sponsoring them for citizenship.”

Upon his retirement, Dr. Nassar focused his efforts on establishing a dialogue between Christians, Muslims and Jews, Dr. Lowrie continued in his letter of recommendation.

“In 2013, he helped the church launch the Middle Eastern Studies Ministry which has created a safe place for people of different Middle Eastern faiths to dialogue and seek greater understanding,” wrote Dr. Lowrie. “All the while, Mr. Nassar’s focus has been on presenting the claims of Christ by his words and example. His influence in the Middle Eastern community of El Paso is vast and very significant. I believe Mr. Nassar is the kind of man of courage and peace who offers hope in our world that we can find peaceful ways to live together.”

Dr. Nassar is an author and poet and recently finished a book of Arabic poetry. The collection is scheduled to be published in Lebanon in 2016.

“HPU was delighted to present its honorary Doctor of Humanities degree to Dr. Nassar, a man who has made the pursuit of peace among nations and the cause of Christ his lifelong mission,” said Dr. Ellis. “We commend the work he has done in El Paso and around the world and join him in prayer for a more peaceful world.”

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Photo cutline: Upon receiving the honorary Doctor of Humanities degree, Dr. Richard Nassar addressed the crowd at HPU’s fall Commencement ceremony.

HPU’s Dr. Evelyn Romig named Distinguished Professor of Literature

BROWNWOOD – September 10, 2015 – After 34 years of extraordinary service to Howard Payne University, Dr. Evelyn Romig has accepted the position of HPU’s first Distinguished Professor of Literature.

Dr. Romig has served the university faculty as head of the Department of English, dean of the School of Humanities, president of the Faculty Assembly and, since 1988, as full professor of English.

“When Dr. Romig expressed the desire to reduce her teaching load or possibly retire, we discussed the opportunity for her to serve in a new role,” said Dr. W. Mark Tew, university provost and chief academic officer. “Known for her innovations in classroom teaching, Dr. Romig is again assisting the university to pioneer new avenues of educational excellence.”

As the university’s first Distinguished Professor of Literature, Dr. Romig will continue to teach on a limited basis, providing the same exemplary experience for which she is known.

“I can’t think of a teacher who better balances commitment to her subject matter with commitment to her students,” said Dr. Millard Kimery, professor of English and chair of the Department of English. “The English department is lucky to have more time to learn from her example.”

Dr. Romig is the recipient of numerous Excellence in Teaching Awards at HPU and the Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year Award in 1991. She is published by Salem Press and in scholarly publications such as Dickens Quarterly and Literature and Psychology. She earned a Master of Arts degree from Texas A&M University and Doctor of Philosophy degree from Rice University.

Dr. Romig has been very engaged in the community, serving as a leader at the United Methodist Church, as member of the American Association of University Women and with the Pecan Valley Arts Festival. She served for 12 years with the Brownwood Independent School District Board of Trustees, including a term as its president.

“I am excited for our students and the university that Dr. Romig will remain on the faculty through which she has served the Brownwood community so faithfully,” said Dr. Tew.

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Photo cutline: Dr. Evelyn Romig was recently named HPU’s first Distinguished Professor of Literature.

Dr. Daresa Voss named interim dean of HPU’s School of Education

Daresa Voss for webBROWNWOOD – September 8, 2015 – Dr. Daresa Voss, professor of education at Howard Payne University, was recently named interim dean of the university’s School of Education.

Dr. Voss joined HPU’s faculty in 2003 following 14 years of service elsewhere in Christian higher education at Wayland Baptist University and William Jewell College. She holds Master of Education and Doctor of Education degrees from Texas Tech University.

With numerous publications and presentations to her credit, Dr. Voss also is certified in Bilingual Elementary Certification, Elementary Teacher Certification and Kindergarten Endorsement.

Dr. Voss earned the Excellence in Teaching Award at HPU in 2009 and was named the Outstanding Faculty Member of the Year for the 2010-2011 academic year.

“I am looking forward to Dr. Voss joining the efforts of the Deans Council and anticipate her rendering exceptional leadership,” said Dr. W. Mark Tew, provost and chief academic officer.

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Photo cutline: Dr. Daresa Voss, professor of education at HPU, was recently named interim dean of the university’s School of Education.

Four join HPU faculty

new faculty fall 2015 for webBROWNWOOD – September 4, 2015 – Howard Payne University started the fall 2015 semester with four new faculty members. Joining HPU were Dr. James Finch, professor of business administration; Rafael Franco-Cuevas, instructor of Spanish; Leslie Greaves, instructor of nursing; and Dr. Derek Smith, associate professor of chemistry.

“We’re pleased to welcome these four additions to the university’s extraordinary faculty,” said Dr. W. Mark Tew, provost and chief academic officer.

Dr. James Finch received his Bachelor of Science degree from Canisius College in Buffalo, N.Y., in 1980; his Master of Business Administration degree from The Ohio State University in 1984; and a Doctor of Philosophy degree, also from The Ohio State University, in 1987. His past experience includes serving in a variety of positions, most recently professor of business administration, at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

Rafael Franco-Cuevas received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California in 1981 and his Master of Arts degree from California State University in 1993. Previous experience includes various positions related to the Spanish language and Hispanic literature and culture. He also served as Spanish instructor for both Pima Community College District and The University of Arizona South.

Leslie Greaves received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree in 2000 and her Master of Science in Nursing degree in 2013 from Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. Her past experience includes serving in a variety of positions at Hendrick Medical Center in Abilene, such as patient safety officer and patient safety services supervisor, education supervisor, clinical educator/training center coordinator and staff registered nurse. She has also taught various nursing courses since 2005.

Dr. Derek Smith received his Bachelor of Science degree from Angelo State University in 1991; his Master of Science degree from The University of Texas at Dallas in 1994; and his Doctor of Chemistry degree, also from UT Dallas, in 1996. Dr. Smith previously taught at HPU from 2007 to 2011. Other past experience includes serving as scientist at Hydrozonix and as a teaching assistant at UT Dallas.

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Photo cutline: Four joined the HPU faculty during the fall 2015 semester. Left to right: Leslie Greaves, Dr. Derek Smith, Rafael Franco-Cuevas and Dr. James Finch.

Deans among new faculty at HPU

BROWNWOOD – September 23, 2014 – Two deans are among the nine new Howard Payne University faculty members this semester. Dr. Richard Fiese serves as dean of the School of Music and Fine Arts and professor of music, while Alexia Riggs joins HPU as dean of libraries and associate professor of library science.

Richard Fiese for webDr. Fiese most recently served as professor in music education at Houston Baptist University from 2000 to 2014. Additionally, he has served as associate professor of music education at the University of Miami from 1995 to 2000; associate professor of music education at the University of Houston from 1989 to 1995; and director of bands at Henry L. West Laboratory School in Coral Gables, Fla. from 1986 to 1989. He earned his doctorate from the University of Miami in 1989.

Dr. Les Plagens, dean of HPU’s School of Business, co-chaired the selection committee in the search to fill the position.

“Dr. Fiese brings both depth and breadth in higher education administrative experience to this dean position at HPU,” he said. “He has accomplished a significant body of scholarly activity nationally and has produced an impressive record of service for the music education profession in Texas.”

Alexia Riggs is a 2002 HPU graduate. Her previous experience includes serving as reference librarian at Del Mar College from 2012 to 2014; technical services librarian at Paris Junior College from 2009 to 2012; government document librarian intern at Texas Christian University in 2009; and as a music library assistant at Hardin-Simmons University from 2004 to 2005. She has completed all but her dissertation toward a doctoral degree from Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi.

Alexia Riggs for web“Alexia is a wonderful addition to our faculty and we’re delighted that she chose to return to serve her alma mater,” said Dr. W. Mark Tew, provost and chief academic officer.

According to Dr. Tew, choosing those who will serve as leaders among the HPU faculty is a tremendously important task.

“The semester has only just begun and we’re already benefiting from their knowledge, experience and leadership,” he said. “I am deeply appreciative of the faculty and deans who worked tirelessly as members of the search committees that recommended these two extraordinary candidates.”

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Photo cutlines: Two deans are among the new faculty at HPU.

Dr. Richard Fiese serves as dean of the School of Music and Fine Arts and professor of music.

Alexia Riggs serves as dean of libraries and associate professor of library science.

Nine join Howard Payne University faculty

new faculty fall 2014 for webBROWNWOOD – September 4, 2014 – The fall 2014 semester at Howard Payne University brought nine new faculty members to the HPU classrooms.

“We’re very blessed at HPU to have an outstanding and dedicated group of faculty serving our students,” said Dr. W. Mark Tew, provost and chief academic officer. “We’re confident these individuals are of the same caliber and we’re delighted to welcome them to the university.”

Joining the faculty this semester are Scott Eddy, Dr. Richard Fiese, Dr. Adrian Gil, Dr. Debra Powell, Alexia Riggs, Dr. Nancy Romig, Shawntay Sparks-Hubbard, Kay Teague and Shannon Turner.

Scott Eddy, instructor of mathematics, received his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees from Youngstown State University in 2009 and 2011. His experience includes serving as a math assessment writer, 2012-2014; part-time instructor at Kent State University, 2011-2013; and graduate assistant at Youngstown State University, 2009-2011.

Dr. Richard Fiese is the new dean of HPU’s School of Music and Fine Arts and professor of music. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin in 1980 and his Master of Music and Doctor of Philosophy degrees from the University of Miami in 1986 and 1989. Dr. Fiese’s previous experience includes serving as professor in music education at Houston Baptist University, 2000-2014; associate professor of music education at the University of Miami, 1995-2000; associate professor of music education at the University of Houston, 1989-1995; and director of bands at Henry L. West Laboratory School in Coral Gables, Fla., 1986-1989.

Dr. Adrian Gil serves as the new director of HPU’s El Paso Center and as an associate professor of business. He received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering (1996), Master of Business Administration (2000) and Doctor of Philosophy degrees (2009) from The University of Texas at El Paso. His previous experience includes serving as assistant professor of management at the University of Houston, 2010-2014; associate instructor of management at The University of Texas at El Paso, 2004-2009; research assistant at The University of Texas at El Paso, 2004-2005; production control manager at A.O. Smith Water Heaters, 2002-2004; and purchasing/materials manager at Air System Components, Inc., 1998-2002.

Dr. Debra Powell, previously an adjunct instructor at HPU’s New Braunfels Center, now serves as assistant professor of business administration at the Brownwood campus. She received her Bachelor of Business Administration degree from McMurry University in 1987, her Master of Business Administration degree from Hardin-Simmons University in 1990 and her Doctor of Business Administration degree from Argosy University in 2013. Her experience includes serving as an online facilitator at the Art Institute Online, 2006-present; adjunct in business administration at HPU, 2007 and 2013-2014; fashion and retail management faculty member at Art Institute of Austin, 2008-2010; visiting instructor at University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, 2005-2006; and various positions, including managerial, at J.C. Penney Co. in various cities, 1988-2004.

Alexia Riggs is HPU’s new dean of libraries and associate professor of library science. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from HPU in 2002, her Master of Divinity degree from Hardin-Simmons University in 2007 and her Master of Library Science degree from the University of North Texas in 2009. She has completed all but her dissertation toward a doctoral degree from Texas A&M University in Corpus Christi. Riggs’ previous experience includes serving as reference librarian at Del Mar College, 2012-2014; technical services librarian at Paris Junior College, 2009-2012; government document librarian intern at Texas Christian University, 2009; and as a music library assistant at Hardin-Simmons University, 2004-2005.

Dr. Nancy Romig joins the HPU faculty as an assistant professor of English. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from HPU in 2004, her Master of Arts degree from Texas State University in 2008 and her Doctor of Philosophy degree from University of Arkansas in 2013. Dr. Romig’s previous experience includes serving as visiting assistant professor of English at HPU, spring 2014; instructor of English at University of Arkansas, summer and fall 2013; teaching assistant for English at University of Arkansas, 2010-2013; graduate tutor at University of Arkansas, 2009-2013; and adjunct at HPU, 2008-2009.

Shawntay Sparks-Hubbard serves as associate professor of nursing and director of the university’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Midwestern State University in 1994, her Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree from Tarleton State University in 2005 and her Master of Science in Nursing/Master of Health Administration degree from the University of Phoenix in 2008. She has completed all but her dissertation toward a doctoral degree from the University of Phoenix. Her experience includes serving as program coordinator at Comanche County Medical Center, 2013-2014; L.V.N. to A.D.N. Bridge Program chair at Texas State Technical College, 2010-2014; registered nurse at Texas Nurse Connection, 2006-2012; and registered nurse at CHS/Abilene Regional Medical Center, 2004-2011.

Kay Teague serves as HPU’s new instructor of mathematics. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Baylor University in 1991 and her Master of Science degree from Texas A&M University in 1993. Her previous experience includes serving as instructor at Tarleton State University, 2013-2014; instructor and freshman math coordinator at Tarleton State University, 2006-2013; and lecturer at Tarleton State University, 1997-2006.

Shannon Turner, previously an HPU staff member, has joined the faculty as instructor of academic services, learning assistance and academic recovery. She received her Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees from Tarleton State University in 2000 and 2001. Her previous experience includes serving as director of institutional research and effectiveness at HPU, 2011-2014; computer science/multimedia/English I teacher at Brownwood High School, 2008-2011; computer science/credit recovery/English II teacher at Vista Ridge High School, 2004-2008; English II/computer science teacher at Leander High School, 2001-2004; and graduate assistant for visual basic computer labs at Tarleton State University, 2000-2001.

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Photo cutline: Nine individuals recently joined the HPU faculty. Left to right: Dr. Adrian Gil, Dr. Richard Fiese, Shawntay Sparks-Hubbard, Dr. Debra Powell, Shannon Turner, Dr. Nancy Romig, Kay Teague and Alexia Riggs. Not pictured is Scott Eddy.

HPU group travels to Slovakia for cross-cultural mission trip

HPU Slovakia group for webBROWNWOOD – June 13, 2014 – Dr. Melody Maxwell, assistant professor of Christian studies at Howard Payne University, and five students from her spring International Missions Practicum course recently traveled to Važec, Slovakia, for a week-long mission experience. The course is designed to give students firsthand experience in cross-cultural service.

The group led ministry activities among the Roma and Slovak people and learned from the missiology of Shane and Dianne McNary, the field personnel with whom they served.

“We spent the semester at HPU learning about the history and culture of the Roma, a minority group in Europe that is often mistreated, and were grateful to get to serve among the Roma in Slovakia and learn from the McNarys’ long-term ministry there,” Dr. Maxwell said.

Ministry activities included teaching English in a local school, leading a daily kids club and planning various evening activities. According to Dr. Maxwell, she and the students prepared both academically and spiritually for the trip.

“We studied best practices in short-term missions and prepared for the specific activities we would lead during our trip,” she said. “Among other assignments, students kept journals while in Slovakia and submitted a reflection paper after we returned. All of these activities helped class members grow academically as well as personally through the trip. It was exciting to see students grow in their cross-cultural leadership abilities as we served together.”

The reflection papers reveal the students’ improved knowledge of international missions.

“The biggest thing I feel I can take as a challenge from this trip is that I need to really try to love everyone as God loves everyone,” wrote Mackenzie Gill, a junior from Brownwood.

Sean Locker, a senior from North Richland Hills, wrote, “From this trip I’ve been better able to understand the importance of reading and experiencing different cultures and how it all pertains to global missions. Now that I’ve seen and experienced so much with my own senses I want to study about the world and its affairs all the more.”

In addition to Gill and Locker, students on the trip included Faye Lasserre, senior from Brownwood; Rachel Runnels, senior from Paradise; and Jack Wells, senior from Terrell.

According to Dr. Maxwell, cross-cultural experiences remind students and faculty alike that God’s kingdom is much bigger than HPU, Texas and the United States.

“Experiences like this allow us to participate in the work that God is doing around the world,” she said. “What a privilege!”

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Photo cutline: A group from HPU stands with missionary Dianne McNary in Važec, Slovakia. From left: Jack Wells, Sean Locker, Mackenzie Gill, Dianne McNary, Dr. Melody Maxwell and Faye Lasserre.

HPU honors students at Academic Awards Convocation

BROWNWOOD – June 6, 2014 – Howard Payne University recently honored 71 students for academic achievements during the spring 2014 semester. The honors were conferred at the annual Academic Awards Convocation ceremony held on HPU’s campus.

Receiving awards were:

Anson
Allen Andrus, Outstanding New All-Level Teacher award

Bangs
Leah’Shae Gibson, Outstanding Student in Engineering Science award
Jessica Ramirez, Outstanding Social Studies Composite Student award

Ben Wheeler
Jarrod White, Outstanding Achievement in Theatre award

Bertram
Conner Fisher, Outstanding Upper Division Student in Biology award

Big Lake
Samantha Guerrero, Academic Achievement in English award

Boylston, Mass.
Catherine “Katie” Mullaney, Othal Brand Award for Outstanding Civic Leadership, the Outstanding Student Speaker Bureau Member award and the Academic Achievement in English award

Brady
Janis Groves, Outstanding Upper-Division Student in Communication Studies award

Brookeland
Kellie Warner, Outstanding Yellow Jacket Newspaper Staff Member award

Brownwood
Melissa Bernal, Outstanding Upper-Division Student in Spanish award
Chasity Cartwright, Academic Achievement in English award
Amber Corley, Education Deans of Independent Colleges and Universities Preservice Educator of the Year award
Sarah Crager, Outstanding Upper-Division Music Major award
Ennis (EJ) Davila, Outstanding Student in Biblical Languages award and the Honor Award in Psychology
Justin Fisher, Outstanding Upper-Division Student in Chemistry award
Stephanie Gutierrez, Outstanding Nontraditional Student award
Jared Huntley, Outstanding Student in Bible award
Benjamin Palmer, Outstanding Student Speaker Bureau Member award
Laura Salazar, Outstanding Nursing Student award
Zachary Tharp, Outstanding Student in Youth Ministry award

Carrollton
Erik Swenson, Outstanding History Student award

Chaparral, N.M.
Shannon Kerr, Outstanding Student in Christian Studies Composite award

Comanche
Nathan Byrd, Outstanding Upper-Division Student in Chemistry award
James Smith, Outstanding Mathematics Major award

Early
Colby Compton, Outstanding Freshman in Art award
Ryan Contreras, Outstanding Lower-Division Music Major award
Abraham Cooper, Outstanding Student in Physics award
Kevin Holamon, Outstanding Political Science Student and Nontraditional Student awards
Kevin E. Kirk, Outstanding Student in MBA Research award
Mark A. Parker, Outstanding Student in Computer Information Systems award
Sydni Thompson, Outstanding Nursing Student award

Fayetteville, N.C.
Tracy Tucker, Outstanding Student in Christian Studies Bible Composite award

Florence
Daniel Taylor, Honor Award in Psychology

Flower Mound
Hannah Hicks, Outstanding Exercise and Sport Science Major award

Fort Hood
Samantha Coronado, Outstanding Yellow Jacket Newspaper Staff Member award

Fort Worth
Brandon Gould, Paul J. Cunningham Memorial award
Joshua Kennedy, Men’s Outstanding Scholar Athlete award, the Paul J. Cunningham Memorial award and the ASC Male Scholar-Athlete Medal of Honor award
Hannah Williamson, Outstanding Lower-Division Student in Spanish award

Fredericksburg
Asiyel Smith, Outstanding Freshman in Art award

Garland
Rachel Ellington, Outstanding Lower-Division Student in Spanish award

Georgetown
Brittany R. Bailey, Outstanding Student in Marketing award

Granbury
Lawrence R. Whittet, Outstanding Student in Management award

Grand Junction, Colo.
Elizabeth Rogers, Outstanding Moot Court Student award

Greenbrier, Ark.
Paul Warren, Outstanding Student in Cross-Cultural Studies award

Houston
Tonya Bloomer, Honor Award in Social Work
Kerrie Ford, Dallas B. Sherman Award for Outstanding Scholarship and the Outstanding Model United Nations Student award

Jacksboro
Chelsey Cathey, Outstanding Lower-Division Student in Chemistry award

Kennedale
Allison Mantell, Outstanding Student in Mathematics Education award

Killeen
Amanda Cruddas, Mattie Anderson Hale Scholarship in English, the Women’s Outstanding Scholar Athlete award and the Tami Pattillo Memorial award
Harley Fine, Outstanding Student in Forensic Science award

La Grange
Valerie Marrs, Outstanding Candidate for Graduation in Biology award

Lubbock
William Colton Curry, Outstanding Student in Practical Theology and Outstanding Academic Achievement in Christian Studies awards

Naples, Fla.
Robin Scofield, Outstanding Academic Achievement in Communication Studies award

Odessa
Katie Murphy, Outstanding Senior in Art award

Ovilla
Becky Lamar, Outstanding New Elementary Teacher award

Perryton
Keaton Fletcher, Outstanding Student in General Biology award

Plainview
Jonathan Rick Henderson, Outstanding Student in Christian Education award

Rockwall
Blaine Wynn, Honor Award in Criminal Justice

Rosenberg
Amber Jones, Outstanding Athletic Training Major award

Round Rock
Bryce McWhirter, Most Promising Newcomer in Theatre award

Rowlett
Katherine Dobson, Outstanding Achievement in Theatre award

Royse City
Hannah Strebeck, Outstanding Upper-Division Music Major award

Sachse
Emily Bird, Outstanding New Secondary Teacher award

San Angelo
Cara DeLoach, Mattie Anderson Hale Scholarship in English and the Glenn Hopp Outstanding Writer award

San Saba
Marshal McIntosh, Outstanding Lower-Division Student in Communication Studies award

Santo
Sarah Van Remmen, Outstanding Student in General Biology and Outstanding Lower-Division Student in Chemistry awards

Sierra Blanca
Rachel Moore, Highest GPA for the Department of Exercise and Sport Science award

Springtown
Mallory Orms, Outstanding Exercise and Sport Science Major, Women’s Outstanding Scholar Athlete and ASC Female Scholar-Athlete Medal of Honor awards

Uvalde
Timothy Marlin, Outstanding Graduating Senior in Mathematics award

Victoria
Neva M. Bowers, Outstanding Student in Entrepreneurship award

Zephyr
Lacy H. Culpepper, Outstanding Student in Finance and Outstanding Student in the School of Business awards

HPU education professor publishes children’s book

Dr Voss and book for webBROWNWOOD – June 5, 2014 – Dr. Daresa Voss, professor of education at Howard Payne University, never really intended to write a children’s book but, according to Voss, God had other plans. In response to the 2013 Moore, Okla., tornado, Dr. Voss penned “Gavriel and Giselle: Anilange,” a book dedicated to all disaster survivors.

“I remember watching the tornado coverage on TV and wondering, as a former kindergarten teacher, would I have been able to stay calm and keep my students calm,” she said.

The answer, as written on the back cover of her new book, is “a definite ‘yes,’ but only with God’s help.”

Dr. Voss was on a road trip a few weeks after the tornado when God revealed the story to her in a “colorful movie format.” In a hurry to capture the story, she began dictating the scenes on her iPhone. When she arrived home, it took a day to transcribe everything into text and several months to revise and refine.

The story is designed to bring comfort to children, parents, teachers and communities following any tragic event. Intended for second- and third-grade audiences, the book contains the appropriate vocabulary and literary devices. It is illustrated by Dr. Voss’ son, Ben Voss, a financial advisor with Edward Jones in Lubbock.

Dr. Voss has donated the book to many school districts, hoping it will be read in classrooms in towns that – like Moore and the fictional community in the book – have experienced disasters.

“This is God’s story and He wanted me to spread the word,” she said. “I’ve learned when God nudges you to do something, you obey.”

“Gavriel and Giselle: Anilange” is available for purchase at retailers including Barnes & Noble and Amazon. It may also be purchased through the publisher at www.westbowpress.com.

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Photo cutline: Dr. Daresa Voss, professor of education at HPU, holds a copy of her new book, “Gavriel and Giselle: Anilange.”

Five HPU personnel to be recognized during book-signing event

HPU authors for webBROWNWOOD – May 1, 2014 – Howard Payne University will host a book-signing event next Monday, May 5, to honor five faculty and staff members who have recently published books. The event will be held from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Richard and Wanda Jackson Conference Room inside HPU’s Paul and Jane Meyer Faith and Life Leadership Center.

HPU authors recognized during the event will include Deborah Pierson Dill, administrative assistant for the School of Science and Mathematics; Dr. Derek Hatch, assistant professor of Christian studies; Dr. Melody Maxwell, assistant professor of Christian studies; John Nickols, assistant professor of history and political science and special assistant to the athletic director; and Dr. Daresa Voss, professor of education.

Set in Central Texas, “Perfect Shelter” is a contemporary Christian romance novel by Deborah Pierson Dill. Released in 2010, it is the first in a series of three novels published by Pelican Book Group. The other novels in the series are “Return to Me” and “Moving On.”

Dr. Derek Hatch co-edited “Gathering Together: Baptists at Work in Worship,” which was published in August 2013. The book features a collection of articles by pastors and educators examining how acts of worship help shape the Baptist faith.

“Torches in the Corridor: 125 Years of Tennessee Woman’s Missionary Union” is an expansion of a thesis  Dr. Melody Maxwell published as an undergraduate student at Union University in Jackson, Tenn. Published in April 2014, the book features historical profiles of leaders within Tennessee Woman’s Missionary Union.

John Nickols recently published “The Last Three Outs,” a baseball novel with Christian themes. The book features a bright pitching prospect whose baseball career is suddenly threatened by a shoulder injury. According to Nickols, the story loosely parallels the life of Joseph in the Old Testament.

“Gavriel and Giselle: Anilange” is a children’s book by Dr. Daresa Voss. Written in response to the 2013 Moore, Okla., tornado, the story is designed to bring comfort to children, parents, teachers and communities following any tragic event.

Dr. W. Mark Tew, HPU’s provost and chief academic officer, said he is pleased that through research and writing HPU faculty and staff members continue to learn and grow in their respective fields.

“These authors are terrific examples to our students by demonstrating that education is a lifelong endeavor,” he said.

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Photo cutline: HPU will honor five faculty and staff members at a book-signing event on May 5. Left to right: Deborah Pierson Dill, John Nickols, Dr. Melody Maxwell, Dr. Daresa Voss and Dr. Derek Hatch.