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Faculty Recognition

The College of Liberal and Fine Arts is lead by a group of exemplary, award-winning, published and experienced faculty members. Our team is here to support you in every step of your journey at Tarleton State University. Join us in recognizing the featured faculty member and recipients of Tarleton's 2022 Faculty Awards for their dedicated service and accomplishments.

Faculty Spotlight

Dr. del Carmen

Dr. Christopher Copeland

Dr. Christopher Copeland the Director of the Institute for Homeland Security, Cybercrime, and International Criminal Justice Studies at Tarleton. With a specialization in technology, his research interests include cybercrimes, digital forensics, homeland security, critical infrastructure, and the application of technology in law enforcement. In addition to completing his D.Sc. degree from Dakota State University, he has obtained several professional certifications including the coveted CISSP and several vendor specific certifications. Prior to entering an academic environment, he spent over nineteen years in the field of information technology working and consulting for companies including American Airlines, Sabre, EDS, National Checking, Vertis Communications, and subsidiaries Berkshire Hathaway.

2022 Faculty Awards

Join in congratulating our award winners for the 2022 Tarleton State University Faculty Awards.

O.A. Grant Excellence in Teaching

Dr. Brittany Rodriguez

Dr. Brittany Rodriguez

Dr. Brittany Rodriguez, Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice, earned her B.S. in Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Sciences from Texas A&M University in 1996, her M.A. in Criminology and Criminal Justice from the University of Texas at Arlington in 2008, and her Ph.D.in Urban Planning and Administration from University of Texas at Arlington in 2013. Dr. Rodriguez has multiple publications and has served on many committees in her time here at Tarleton. Faculty, staff, and students recognize and appreciate Dr. Rodriguez's dedication and commitment to teaching here at Tarleton.

Barry B. Thompson Service Award

Dr. David Robinson

Dr. David Robinson

Dr. David Robinson, Director of Bands and Assistant Professor of Music in the Fine Arts Department, earned his BA of Music Education in Instrumental Music from Arkansas State University as well as his MA of Music in Wind Band Conducting from the University of Missouri. He later obtained his Doctorate Degree of Musical Arts in Wind Conducting from the University of North Texas, where he also was an instructor of the world-renowned Wind Studies program. Since appointed Director of Bands in 2018, he oversees all aspects of the Tarleton Instrumental Program and serves as conductor of the Tarleton Wind Ensemble. 

Outstanding Jr. Faculty

Dr. J. Bradley Baker

Dr. J. Bradley Baker

Dr. J Bradley Baker, assistant professor of collaborative piano at Tarleton State University, earned his B.M. of Piano Performance from North Dakota State University in 2006, his M.M. of Piano Performance from the Cleveland Institute of Music, and his D.M.A. of Piano Performance from The University of Alabama. Dr. Baker was a 2020 National Finalist for the American Prize in Solo Piano, and his performances have been heard in concert halls throughout the United States, France, and Canada. He has been recorded by the Navona Records and Centaur Records labels and broadcast on public radio stations throughout the United States and United Kingdom.

Faculty Excellence in Scholarship

Dr. Atsuko Kawakami

Dr. Atsuko Kawakami

Dr. Atsuko Kawakami holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from Arizona State University and is an Associate Professor of Sociology in the Department of History, Sociology, and Geography/GIS at Tarleton State University. Her research interests include social gerontology, healthcare, Japan studies, support groups, organizations, and networks. She has published numerous articles, some of which resulted from collaborative research with Tarleton undergraduate students. Her most recent articles have been on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on university experience, social networking among Japanese elders, and Community involvement to reduce Hepatitis C through health and sex education in a rural areas. Dr. Kawakami has been serving as a Scholar Development Fellow for the Center for Educational Excellence for the last two years. She is a recipient of the 2020 Barry B Thompson Service Award for her active role supporting Tarleton's Sociology Club since 2014. 

Faculty Excellence in Student Success

Mr. Tim Harding

Mr. Tim Harding

Mr. Timothy Harding is an Associate Professor of Art at Tarleton State University. Harding received his Master of Fine Arts degree from Texas Christian University in 2010, and his Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Texas Woman’s University in 2008. In 2018 Harding was a visiting artist at the Center for Creative Connections at the Dallas Museum of Art. In 2016 he received a Nasher Sculpture Center Artist Grant. Harding has exhibited nationally and held residencies at 77Art, the Wassaic Project, and the Vermont Studio Center. He is represented in Dallas by Cris Worley Fine Arts. Harding’s works merge the gestural nature of Abstract Expressionism with the flatness of Minimalist painting to explore how a traditionally two-dimensional object can visually and physically occupy a three-dimensional space. He purposefully stretches his finished paintings across ill-fitting supports or builds a substructure under the canvas in order to make the surface fold, buckle, or protrude, “sculpting” the painting into a unique shape. Mr. Harding’s experience and expertise has benefited students’ learning since his start at Tarleton.

Engaged Faculty

Ms. Prairie Parnell

Prairie Parnell

Ms. Prairie Parnell, a Communications Studies Instructor at Tarleton State University, holds an MA in Communication and an MFA in theatre from Texas Tech University. She joined Tarleton in 2009 teaching communication and hybrid theatre classes. In 2010 she began to work with LGBTQ students on campus, and became a faculty adviser to the gay/straight alliance. In 2012 she took over as the faculty co-adviser for the equestrian team, a nationally ranked riding team.  While working with the office of diversity, she helped develop the original Ally training manual to bring awareness and safety to LGBTQ students. In recent years she has served twice as chair of the theatre, film and new multimedia division of the national communication association, and two year term as President of the international society of educational biographers. In conjunction with the GSA, office of diversity, and communication department, she directs the Vagina Monologues performances yearly, raising money to support cross Timbers family services. Ms. Parnell has recently published several articles and a book chapter. She is honored to have been recognized by the college and her colleagues.