2016-2018 Cohort



Russell Mills

Position: Faculty Co-Facilitator, Associate Professor of Political Science
Phone: 419-372-7329
Email: millsrw@bgsu.edu


Paul Valdez

Position: Associate Director
Phone: 419-372-9287
Email: paulv@bgsu.edu


Matt Hirman

Position: Graduate Assistant



Tasha Ford

Position: Instructor, Social Work
Phone: 419-372-0938
Email: tashaf@bgsu.edu

Tasha Ford earned her PhD in Health Psychology from Walden University, a Master’s degree in Social Work from Cleveland State University, and a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Wilberforce University. She is a Licensed Independent Social Worker-Supervisor status. With over 17 years of industry experience, Tasha has worked as a clinical supervisor, therapist (in-home, outpatient, and psychiatric), school based case manager, online and ground based educator (psychology, social work, diversity, and sociology), and she has developed and presented continuing education workshops on various topics across disciplines. Her research interests include wellness across the lifespan, depression, food relationships and emotional eating, non-traditional student success, and quality of life for aging populations and their caregivers.

Tasha Ford modified an existing course, Social Work 3200: Human Behavior and the Social Environment-I, which will cover the life span of children from conception to later adolescence utilizing an ecological perspective. The impact of biological, psychological and socio-cultural systems on human growth and development will be identified and explored.  The course will also identify concerns within the community and intentionally engage in organized efforts to promote and sustain meaningful change per the need that has been identified by community partner(s) in the Firelands region. The goal is to instill, develop, or maintain a connection to giving back and increasing a commitment to civic responsibility while assisting partners in reaching their goals.

Sidra Lawrence 102746

Sidra Lawrence

Position: Assistant Professor, Ethnomusicology
Phone: 419-372-9481
Email: sidral@bgsu.edu

Sidra Lawrence is an Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology at Bowling Green State University. She received a PhD in Ethnomusicology from the University of Texas at Austin and a Masters degree in Music with an emphasis in ethnomusicology from Bowling Green State University. Her research, based on ethnographic work in the border region of Ghana and Burkina Faso, explores the connection between racialized gender ideologies, musical performance, and the sexed body. In her book manuscript, It's just this animal called culture: Transnational Feminism and the Politics of Everyday Solidarities, Lawrence investigates the mobilization of cultural authenticity as a means to regulate Dagara women's bodies. Focusing on micro-narratives of empowerment, she argues for a re-theorization of resistance that does not depend upon globalized notions of oppression and feminist action. Her work has been supported by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the West African Research Association. She has received awards for her presentations from the Society for Ethnomusicology African Music Section, and the Section on the Status of Women. She has presented her work at several national and international conferences including, the Society for Ethnomusicology, National Women's Studies Association, American Anthropological Association, Netherlands Association for Gender Studies and Feminist Anthropology, and the University of Ghana's conference on Intercultural Approaches in Higher Music Education. Her research has been published in the African Music Journal; she has review articles in the African Music Journal and the Latin American Studies Review.

Sidra Lawrence modified an existing course Black Music and the Politics of Space to include community-based pedagogy for the 2017-2018 academic year.  Her students will explore not only the production, transformation, and performance of space, but the complex ways in which individuals and communities navigate spatial parameters, often acting to script a new narrative of belonging, justice, and empowerment.  The course will take an expansive view of the performative, looking at theater, spoken word, dance, music, and the everyday as spaces for contestation and contested spaces. Course assignments will include community-based activities, observations, and field trips connected to continuous reflection, leading to a culminating reflection about the politics of space.

Leigh-Ann Pahapill-2

Leigh-Ann Pahapill

Position: Assistant Professor, School of Art
Phone: 419-372-8952
Email: pahapil@bgsu.edu

Leigh-Ann Pahapill is an Assistant Professor and First Year Program Coordinator in the School of Art.  She received a Bachelor's of Fine Arts from York University and a Master's of Fine Arts from the University of Chicago.  Her teaching specialization is in installation, sculpture, video, and photography.  Beginning with studio investigations of found images and objects, her work initially takes the form of sculpture, photography, and videos that are then re-contextualized and modified in response to the formal and functional opportunities of the specific architectures she is invited to explore. Choreographed, created and re-constructed in-situ, her work intends to provoke a series of performative articulations and re-articulations, where her objects, the site, and the viewer are the material which form the basis for shifting representational events.

Leigh-Ann Pahapill developed a new special topic course in the School of Art, ARTS 4010/5860: Forms of Resistance: Performances of Dissent for implementation in Spring 2018.  This course will critically examine the fundamental assumption at stake in Social Practice; that is, its ability to be socially efficacious; its capacity to produce, rather than to merely represent, social change.  The class will review several critiques of Social Practice that argue that its inherent challenge to arts economic value does not prevent Social Practice from being eventually co-opted by the hegemonic class.  In the face of these critiques, this class will provide a platform for investigation of practices that shift from an economic to an ideological framework, by comparing the work of contemporary artists engaged in practices that bridge Social Practice and institutional critique as a means to explore this artistic terrain.  This class, is thus, a vehicle for us to collectively explore politicized critical practice, both in theory and practice. Students will read critical texts to set groundwork for discussions that explore various conceptions of arts efficacy in a Marxist paradigm.  Case studies will include projects by Tania Bruguera, Theaster Gates, Pussy Riot, Wafaa Bilal, Glukya, Hito Steyerl, Laurie Jo Reynolds, Yuri Pattison, and Amy Kelkin.  These theories will then be drawn upon as a means for students to design aesthetic proposals/responses that iteratively take up the economic, the political, and the ideological complexities of capitalist social formation.  Students will focus there investigations of how to embody critique in fieldwork exploring local institutions focused on human rights issues.


Justin Rex

Position: Assistant Professor, Political Science
Phone: 419-372-2017
Email: jmrex@bgsu.edu

Justin Rex is an Assistant Professor of Political Science in the Department of Political Science at Bowling Green State University. He teaches courses in the Master of Public Administration Program as well as undergraduate courses in Public Administration and Public Policy. He received a Ph.D. and M.A. in Political Science from Wayne State University. He received a B.A. in Political Science, a B.A. in Sociology, and a minor in Economics from Bowling Green State University. Previously, he worked as an Assistant Professor of Political Science at Shawnee State University, a Senior Lecturer in the Irvin D. Reid Honors College at Wayne Sate University, and research in the Center for Urban Studies at Wayne State University.

His research and teaching interests are in Public Policy and Administration, American Government, and Law. His current research examines federal regulatory policy, specifically the role of agency capture at the federal banking regulators leading up to the 2008 financial crisis. He also has experience with community based learning. In the Honors College at Wayne State, he taught a sequence of introductory courses for incoming freshman on Detroit and American government that offered students the opportunity to reflect about the history and problems of the city and ask whether and how American political institutions and processes could be leveraged to solve these problems.

Justin Rex developed a new course, Political Science 4310/5310: The Politics of Poverty and is working to teach the course in the Spring of 2018.  His course examines the problem of poverty, with a focus on the US. The course begins with first-hand accounts and simulations about what it is like to live in poverty, including the United Way’s Cost of Poverty Experience (COPE). These activities are followed by an overview of how poverty is defined and measured as well as the extent of poverty in the US and around the world. The rest of the course examines competing perspectives about the causes of poverty and evaluates a variety of historical and contemporary policy solutions.