Stephen F. Austin State University

Faculty and Staff

Faculty

Freddie Avant, PhD, LMSW-AP, ACSW, C-SSWS
Freddie Avant, PhD, LMSW-AP, ACSW, C-SSWS - Professor of Social Work; Associate Dean and Director, School of Social Work Educational Background: BA, Lyon College; MSW, University of Missouri-Columbia; PhD, Jackson State University Research/Areas of Interest: Social Work Education; Children and Family Issues; Rural Social Work; Youth Violence; and Leadership Office: SWK 101E Phone: 936.468.5105
Freddie L. Avant is the Director and Associate Dean of the School of Social Work in the College of Liberal and Applied Arts. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work from Lyon College and Master of Social Work from The University of Missouri in Columbia. He earned his PhD in Social Work from Jackson State University. He is a licensed master's level social worker with an advanced practice recognition. His practice background and research interests include mental health, cultural diversity, intellectual disabilities, rural social work practice, medical social work, social work administration and leadership, social work education, and school social work.
Kristin Bailey Wallace, MSW, LBSW
Kristin Bailey Wallace, MSW, LBSW - Assistant Professor Educational Background: BSW, Stephen F. Austin State University, MSW; Stephen F. Austin State University Office: SWK 104 Phone: 936.468.4191
Kristin Bailey-Wallace has been a member of the faculty of the School of Social Work since 2009. She has taught throughout the BSW program in the areas of social policy, field instruction, and introductory social work classes. Mrs. Bailey-Wallace has served as agency field instructor and faculty liaison, and she has a variety of experiences in the medical field including long term care and rehabilitation, dialysis, hospice care, bereavement services, and rural health services for at-risk individuals. She worked as a licensed social worker for five years with a non-profit hospice agency providing direct services for hospice clients and families. Mrs. Bailey-Wallace enjoys working with students as they explore their interests in the field of social work. Her research interests include gerontology and disability, social welfare policy, issues that affect rural communities, field education, and medical social work.
Kathleen Belanger, PhD
Kathleen Belanger, PhD - Professor of Social Work Educational Background: BA, Catholic University; MSSW, University of Texas-Austin; PhD, University of Houston Research/Areas of Interest: Child Welfare; Rural Issues: child welfare, capacity building, policies, best practices; Community Organization; Social Work Administration; Program Evaluation; Faith-Based Services; Religion and Spirituality; and Sustainable Community Development Office: SWK 205 Phone: 936.468.1807
Kathleen Belanger received her BA from Catholic University, her MSSW from the University of Texas at Austin and Ph.D. from the University of Houston. She has taught social work across the curriculum and assisted in the development of the MSW program at SFA in which she currently teaches primarily rurality, child welfare and community practice. Her practice experience includes oversight of contracted services for the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (formerly DHS), development of a management information system in child welfare for DHS, and program development and oversight. Her research and consultation includes child welfare, rural human services, rural cultural competence, racial disproportionality in child welfare, faith and spirituality, and sustainable community development.
H. Stephen Cooper, PhD, LCSW, LCCA
H. Stephen Cooper, PhD, LCSW, LCCA - Associate Professor of Social Work; Associate Dean, College of Liberal and Applied Arts Educational Background: BS, Psychology, Stephen F. Austin State University; MSW, Stephen F. Austin State University; PhD, Social Work, The University of Texas at Austin Research/Areas of Interest: Child & Adolescent Mental Health; Juvenile Justice & Criminal Justice; Police Social Work; Family Violence; Conflict Resolution; Civic and Political Engagement; Rural Social Work; Research Methods(Concept Mapping & Social Network Analysis) Office: SWK 120 Phone: 936.468.2845
Dr. Cooper has been a member of the faculty since August 2001 and has served in a variety of capacities, including Program Director for the School of Social Work's Community Resource Center and Coordinator of their Center for Rural Social Work Research and Development. Dr. Cooper teaches primarily BSW courses and has taught across the BSW curriculum with an emphasis on research, statistics, policy, and community/organizational theory and practice. He has also taught research, statistics, and mental health courses in the MSW program. His work experience includes law enforcement, child/adolescent community mental health, adolescent residential treatment, therapeutic wilderness programming, administration, and network planning/development.
Sam Copeland, PhD, LCSW, ACSW
Sam Copeland, PhD, LCSW, ACSW - Associate Professor of Social Work; BSW Program Director Educational Background: BA, University of Nevada Las Vegas; MSW, University of Houston; PhD, University of Houston Research/Areas of Interest: Cultural Competence; Mental Health; International Social Work; and Rural Social Work Office: SWK 101E Phone: 936.468.2126
Sam Copeland is the Director of the BSW Program at the School of Social Work at Stephen F. Austin State University. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Social Work from the University of Nevada at Las Vegas. He earned his Masters and Ph.D. in Social Work from the University of Houston. He is a licensed clinical social worker and board approved supervisor. His practice, background and research interest include: mental health, social work education, cultural diversity, leadership development, spirituality, rural and international social work.
Wilma Cordova, MSW
Wilma Cordova, MSW - Associate Professor of Social Work Educational Background: BSW, New Mexico State University; MSW, Michigan State University Research/Areas of Interest: Distributive Justice and the issues involving ethnicity and culture; Utilization of student organizations for community development; and Volunteerism and its impact during national emergencies Office: SWK 117 Phone: 936.468.6613
Ms. Cordova is an associate professor and teaches across the curriculum including multicultural social work, practice, policy and human behavior. She has experience working with diverse populations in New Mexico and Texas. She has been a faculty member for over 10 years and is currently a member of NASW, BPD and CSWE. She is a CASA board member and an American Red Cross mental health provider and has been involved with recovery efforts following natural disasters. She is contracted to conduct cultural diverse training in the community with various agencies. Her research interests include integrating art in social work content, working with colonias, disaster preparedness and training. She has also conducted research in the area of displaced families following disaster, immigration issues, working with the elderly, HIV/AIDS in the rural context.
Linda Harris, MSW
Linda Harris, MSW - Clinical Instructor of Social Work; Director of Field Instruction Educational Background: MSW, University of Houston Research/Areas of Interest: Social Work Administration; Mental Health; Aging Interests; Poverty and Aging of Rural Minorities; Cultural Competence; and Spirituality Office: SWK 108 Phone: 936.468.2393
Linda Harris, LMSW is the Director of Field Education of the Stephen F. Austin School of Social Work. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Social Rehabilitation from Stephen F. Austin University and Master of Social Work degree from the University of Houston. She is a licensed master's level social worker. Her practice and research interests include: rural elderly minority problems and practices, spirituality, cultural diversity and rural social work practice.
Kara Lopez, Ph.D., LMSW
Kara Lopez, Ph.D., LMSW - Assistant Professor Educational Background: BA, University of Texas at San Antonio; MSW, University of Houston; Ph.D., University of Houston Research/Areas of Interest: Social work research methods, Qualitative methods; Ground theory; Program Development; Program Evaluation; Community Interventions; Impact of social media and social networking on social work profession; Children and family issues; and Gender issues Office: SWK 115 Phone: 936.468.4093
Kara Lopez joined the faculty of the School of Social Work in 2014 as an assistant professor. She received her BA in psychology from the University of Texas at San Antonio, and her MSW and Ph.D. from the University Houston Graduate College of Social Work. Her practice background is at the agency and programmatic levels and focused on program evaluation, program development and grant writing while employed at a large substance abuse agency in Houston, TX. Her current research focus is on the influence of social media and social networking sites on social work practice, policy and education.
James Morris, Ph.D., LMSW
James Morris, Ph.D., LMSW - Assistant Professor Educational Background: BA, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA; MSW, Tulane University, New Orleans, LA; Ph.D., Tulane University, New Orleans, LA Research/Areas of Interest: Social Work Research; Social Work with Cultural communities; Macro-level Social Work; Nonprofit program development; design, implementation and evaluation; Medical Social Work; Social Work in Disasters; Community Resilience and Vulnerability Office: SWK 119 Phone: 936.468.1169
James Morris joined the faculty of the Stephen F. Austin School of Social Work in the fall of 2014. Prior to coming to SFA, he was a Social Worker in New Orleans for 12 years, and worked for various nonprofit agencies that provide access to healthcare, case management services, and/or advocacy for client populations. Beginning in 2006 after the impact of Hurricane Katrina, James was the Director of Social Services for both the New Orleans Musicians Clinic, and Sweet Home New Orleans, and engaged displaced and affected members of the New Orleans cultural community to return to the City in meaningful ways to continue to create and express art representative of their lived experiences. Dr. Morris also worked with the St.Anna's Medical Mission as their Social Worker and Mobile Unit Manager, and delivered social work services via community outreach with this mobile medical program. Dr. Morris' research has focused mainly on the differential impacts of Hurricane Katrina on musicians, with focus on issues of resiliency and vulnerability, impact of social support networks, community connection, mentoring, and the psychological impact of music for those affected by disaster and/or displacement.
Emmerentie Oliphant, PhD
Emmerentie Oliphant, PhD - Professor of Social Work; MSW Program Director Educational Background: BA, Social Work, University of Pretoria, South-Africa; MA, Social Work, University of Pretoria, South-Africa; D Litt et Phil (Social Work), Rand Afrikaans University, South-Africa Research/Areas of Interest: Multicultural social work; International social work; Social Work Research; Child and family issues; Sexual abuse of children; and Substance abuse Office: SWK 101C Phone: 936.468.2291
Emmerentie Oliphant is a Professor and Director of the MSW Program at the School of Social Work at Stephen F. Austin State University. She joined SFA in 2006. She practiced social work and taught social work in South Africa since 1988. Her practice background includes child protective service, family counseling, correctional services and community development. She is still actively involved as a consultant to agencies in South Africa, with a specific emphasis on program development and evaluation. Her research interests include family counseling, mental health, HIV/AIDS, international social work, cultural diversity, qualitative research and program evaluation.
Becky Price-Mayo, MSW, LBSW-IPR
Becky Price-Mayo, MSW, LBSW-IPR - Lecturer of Social Work; Director, Child Welfare Professional Development Project Educational Background: BSW, Stephen F. Austin State University; MSW, Stephen F. Austin State University Research/Areas of Interest: Child Welfare and Rural Social Work Office: SWK 209 Phone: 936.468.1808
Becky Price-Mayo is the Director of the Child Welfare Professional Development Project (CWPDP) and Lecturer in the School of Social Work . She earned Bachelor and Master degrees in Social Work from Stephen F. Austin State University. She is a licensed bachelor's level social worker with an independent practice recognition. Her practice background and research interests include mental health, child abuse and neglect, foster care and adoption, child welfare practice, rural social work practice, and social work education.
Peter Simbi, PhD
Peter Simbi, PhD - Professor of Social Work Educational Background: BASWA, Makerere University; MSW, University of Minnesota-Duluth; MA, University of Minnesota-Duluth; PhD, University of Minnesota Office: SWK 206 Phone: 936.468.2029
Dr. Peter T. Simbi (Ph.D., MSW, M.A. Ed Ad, University of Minnesota and BA SWSA Makerere University) is professor of Social Work. Currently, he teaches in the MSW curriculum mainly in the areas of social welfare policy and social work practice with communities and organizations. He has been a social work educator and administrator at both BSW and MSW levels and served as site visitor for CSWE. He taught at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, Louisiana, Grambling State University, Louisiana, and Georgia State University, Atlanta, Georgia and Valdosta State University, Georgia. In addition, he served as coordinator of the BSW Program at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, assistant Dean of the School of Social Work, Baton Rouge Louisiana and director of the MSW Program at Stephen F. Austin State University. In other countries, he taught at Nsamizi Training Institute, Entebbe, Uganda and Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda. In fall 2009, he was visiting professor the University of Teesside, Middlesbrough, United Kingdom. His publications are in the area of administrative justice, international social work, child welfare and collaborative service delivery.
Ann Wilder, Ph.Dc, LCSW, MSSW
Ann Wilder, Ph.Dc, LCSW, MSSW - Assistant Professor Educational Background: BA, Texas Woman's University; MSSW, University of Texas at Arlington; ABD University of North Texas Research/Areas of Interest: HIV/AIDS Education, Sexuality and Older Adults, Neuroscience and Social Work Practice, Human Service Technology, Online Curriculum Development, International Social Work and Public Health of Elderly Women in India Office: SWK 105 Phone: 936.468.2728
Ann Wilder joined the faculty in the School of Social Work at Stephen F. Austin State University in Fall 2014 teaching in the MSW program mainly in the areas of Direct Social Work Practice and Human Behavior. She is completing her PhD in Sociology and Applied Gerontology and is a career Social Worker with over 20 years of clinical and community practice experience. Since 2004, Ann has worked as a Geriatric clinician and holds an educational specialty in Applied Gerontology. Her social work experience includes working with Native American populations in Arizona and a variety of programs in Texas encompassing Family Preservation with Juvenile Court and Child Protective Services, Domestic Violence, Rape Crisis, Medical Social Work, Consulting with LTC facilities and HIV/AIDS services. She is a member of the Gerontological Society of America, Southwestern Social Science Association, Council on Social Work Education, National Association of Social Workers and has served in leadership with West Central Tx NASW Branch. Her Dissertation in International Social Work is a secondary data analysis of the Indian public health National Family Health survey (NFHS-3) exploring the living arrangements of elderly widows throughout India.

Staff

Walter de la Cruz
Walter de la Cruz - Administrative Assistant Office: SWK 101 Phone: 936.468.4020
Walter graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University, earning a Bachelor of Arts, with a major in Sociology. He is currently a Master's Candidate and pursuing an M.A. in Hispanic Studies at S.F.A.S.U.
Walter is responsible for administrative functions for the School of Social Work's MSW Program. He manages all application and admission processes for potential and incoming MSW students. He is also responsible for providing support to all graduate faculty and assist with the operation of the Child Welfare Professional Development Project (CWPDP). He works with the MSW Program Director to design and sustain administrative processes that promote students' success in all areas of their graduate education. He supports the MSW Program and CWPDP through students' admissions, advisement, scholarship and stipend accounting and distribution, enrollment, resolution of academic issues, and graduation.
Carol Levine
Carol Levine - Administrative Assistant Office: SWK 101A Phone: 936.468.5105
Carol has a BBA degree in General Business from Stephen F. Austin State University and an Associate Degree in Accounting from Angelina College. She is responsible for multiple administrative functions in the Office of the School Director and the BSW Program. Carol works with the BSW Program Director to design and sustain administrative processes that promote students' success in the BSW Program. For the School, she oversees financial matters including budget preparation and analysis, financial reporting and expense payments. Carol also assist with the Child Welfare Professional Development Project (CWPD). She is an integral part of processing faculty and staff personnel actions through the Banner system. She works closely with all program leaders on budget matters.
Judy Montgomery
Judy Montgomery - Administrative Assistant Office: SWK 109 Phone: 936.468.2263
Judy manages all administrative functions of the Field Education Program. She works closely with the Director of Field Education to provide quality field placements for BSW and MSW students. She manages the field education records of students, field instructors and agencies. She assists in organizing field instructors' training and orientations for students. She also provides general support to the School by assisting in organizing workshops, planning events and meetings. She works with all program leaders in meeting the mission of the School of Social Work.