Washington State University. College of Arts and Sciences.Meet the college’s newest faculty, whose scholarly expertise and interests—from atomic, molecular, and optical physics to issues of race, justice, and equity—enrich and expand the arts and sciences at WSU.

Ryan Booth

Postdoctoral Faculty Fellow
History (Pullman)
ryan.booth@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Nineteenth-century Native American history; U.S. military history; U.S. West; Civil War; U.S.-Indian Wars; and Imperial Studies

Previous post: WSU Vancouver

Education and training: PhD, history, Washington State University; MA, history, Central Washington University; BA, history & philosophy, Loyola University Chicago

Honors and achievements: Fulbright-Nehru Fellow, Kolkata, India, 2019; Society for Military History Summer Seminar Fellow, 2022; Research Assistant for Diverse Scholars (RADS) at WSU

Outside of work, I enjoy time with family and friends, camping, hiking, cooking, and visits to my Skagit homelands.


Krista Brand

Assistant Professor, Career Track
Fine Arts (Pullman)
krista.brand@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Interdisciplinary art, including ceramics, painting, drawing, sculpture and digital media; ideas relating to attention, perception, labor, value, embodiment, ecocriticism; curation and education; and professional practices for artists

Previous post: WSU Pullman

Education and training: MFA, interdisciplinary art, Washington State University; BA, studio art, Wheaton College; AS, graphic design, North Idaho College

Honors and achievements: Co-founder/co-curator, Side x Side Contemporary, online exhibition space; resident artist, Arts Letters & Numbers, Averill Park, NY; two-time juror for Photolucida Critical Mass, Portland, OR

Outside of work, I enjoy walking, longboarding, snowboarding, starting a vinyl collection, health and wellness, and spending time with my 10-year-old son.


Anthony “Tony” Brave

Assistant Professor, Career Track
Digital Technology and Culture (Pullman)
anthony.brave@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Indigenous research methodologies; media studies; game and play studies; design; art; and history

Previous post: New York University

Education and training: PhD student, MCC New York University; MPA, BA, The Evergreen State College

Honors and achievements: Volunteer service award pin received from President Barack Obama in 2013.

Outside of work, I enjoy hiking, playing videogames, drinking coffee, watching cheesy zombie shows, fighting for tribal sovereignty and self-determination, and walking with my dogs.


Jordan Clapper

Assistant Professor
Digital Technology and Culture
(Pullman)
jordan.clapper@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Indigenous video games, indigenous literature, queer games, narrative theory, queer theory, and digital humanities

Previous post: Brandeis University

Education and training: PhD, English literature, Brandeis University; MFA, creative writing, MA, English literature, University of Idaho; BA, English literature, Penn State University

Honors and achievements: Connected PhD grant, The Ancestors in the Machine: Indigenous Futurity and Games in Alternate Historiographies of the Digital Humanities, Edited by Dorothy Kim and Adeline Koh

Outside of work, I enjoy game development; anime and manga; writing; tabletop RPGs; and dreaming about getting a Corgi.


Katherine Daniels

Associate Professor, Career Track
Psychology (Pullman)
katherine.daniels@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Scholarship of teaching and learning; effects of peer-mentoring programs; and animal cognition—individual and species variations in squirrels and chipmunks

Previous post: University of Southern Indiana

Education and training: PhD, MS, psychology, University of Oklahoma; BA, psychology, University of Rochester

Outside of work, I enjoy traveling, hiking, and spending time with my dogs.


Cheryl Ellenwood

Assistant Professor
Politics, Philosophy, and Public Affairs (Pullman)
cheryl.ellenwood@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Issues of equity in the public sector and nonprofit management, including the work of minority-led and Indigenous-led organizations; and issues of race, justice, and equity

Previous post: University of Arizona

Education and training: PhD, public administration, University of Arizona; MA, University of Arizona; MA, University of California, Los Angeles; BA, University of Arizona; AGEC, Pima Community College; AA, Columbia Basin College

Honors and achievements: Being among the first Indigenous students to earn a PhD in Public Administration from an R1 university and now teaching in the discipline as an Indigenous (Nez Perce) tenure-track professor including classroom discussions about federal, state, and tribal governments; serving as an affiliate of WSU Center for Native American Research & Collaboration

Outside of work, I enjoy working on the traditional homelands of the Nimiipuu people, who are among my relatives, and gathering roots, berries, and medicine with my family and father. I also enjoy being mother to two young boys and an auntie to many nephews; coaching youth sports and seeing young athletes develop their skills; and exploring with my partner all that the Palouse has to offer.


Marlene Gaynair

Assistant Professor
History  (Pullman)
marlene.gaynair@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Social, cultural, economic histories; Black Atlantic; transnational histories of the twentieth century; digital humanities; diasporas; Jamaican/Caribbean diaspora; popular culture; Africana Studies; identities and citizenship; im/migration and settlement; food studies; music studies; ethnic studies; colonialism, postcolonialism, decolonialism; imperialism; and comparative U.S. and Canadian studies

Previous post: Harvard University, Weatherhead Center for International Affairs (Canada Program)

Education and training: PhD, history, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey; MA, history, York University; BA, special honors, history, York University

Honors and achievements: Author, “Riding the Rails Across Canadian History through ‘The Porter’ Television Series” in Canadian Historical Review; “Review of Marcia Chatelain, Franchise: The Golden Arches in Black America” in Enterprise and Society; and Islands in the North digital archive

Outside of work, I enjoy vacations to major cities and warm beaches in the Caribbean; attending live sporting events (looking forward to World Cup 2026); and the Toronto Raptors, who have my heart and whose games I watch religiously.


Qingze Guan

William Band Distinguished Assistant Professor
Physics and Astronomy (Pullman
qingze.guan@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Atomic, molecular, and optical physics (AMO) and quantum information science covering quantum simulation and quantum sensing, non-equilibrium quantum systems, and quantum chemistry

Previous post: University of Oklahoma

Education and training: PhD, Washington State University; BS, University of Science and Technology of China

Honors and achievements: Coauthor, “Ultrafast manipulation of the weakly bound helium dimer” in Nature Physics; coauthor, “Magic conditions for multiple rotational states of bialkali molecules in optical lattices” in Physical Review A, 2021; coauthor, “Density oscillations induced by individual ultracold two-body collisions” in Physical Review Letters, 2019

Outside of work, I enjoy hiking, traveling, reading, and watching movies.


Lucas “Luke” Huckaby

Assistant Professor, Career Track
Psychology (Pullman)
lucas.huckaby@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Psychology as a science; personality; motivation; positive psychology; prejudice against atheists; sex and gender minorities; psychology of religion and spirituality; forgiveness/self-forgiveness; romantic relationships; and multicultural psychology

Previous post: University of Utah Counseling Center

Education and training: PhD, MA, Counseling Psychology, University of Louisville; BA, Psychology, California State University, Chico

Honors and achievements: University Fellowship Award, University of Louisville; coauthor, “A Primer on Meta-analytic Structural Equation Modeling: The Case of Depression” in Prevention Science, 2022

Outside of work, I enjoy traveling, running, swimming, hiking/camping, Dungeons & Dragons, video games, and family time with my wife, Sarah, and dog, Kona.


Ryan Joseph

Associate Professor, Career Track
Chemistry (Pullman)
rjoseph@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: New methods in chemical synthesis, particularly those that enable the chemical synthesis of homogeneous glycopeptides and glycoproteins for the study and application to problems in immunology and disease; new methods in asymmetric synthesis; and sustainability in peptide synthesis and the development of processes for the recovery of useful materials from the waste-stream solid-phase peptide synthesis

Previous post: North Idaho College

Education and training: PhD, chemistry, Washington State University; BS, chemistry, University of California, Davis

Honors and achievements: President, Idaho Academy of Science and Engineering, 2020–22; first author, “Solid phase synthesis of ω-aspartic thioacid containing peptides” in Tetrahedron Letters, 2015 first author, “The Catalytic Asymmetric Exo-Selective [C+NC+CC] Reaction” in Organic Letters, 2014; first author, “Rapid Formation of N-Glycopeptides via Cu(II)-Promoted Glycosylative Ligation” in Organic Letters, 2013

Outside of work, I enjoy hiking, making “experimental music” (bleeps/bloops) with an eclectic collection of analogue synthesizers (including Buchla, Serge, Eurorack and other formats), board games, and spending time with my family, friends, and dogs.


Christian Kim

Assistant Professor
Music (Pullman)
christian.kim@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Jazz and commercial composition; contemporary songwriting; orchestration techniques; art entrepreneurship; and music publication

Previous post: Middle Georgia State University

Education and training: DMA, jazz composition, University of Texas at Austin; DMA, University of Southern California (ABD, jazz studies); MFA, jazz studies, California Institute of the Arts; MDiv, Biblical studies, Liberty University; BM, jazz studies, Howard University

Honors and achievements: “Hyssop,” Universal Music Group

Outside of work, I enjoy good coffee, cooking, baking, traveling, the Arsenal Football Club, and reading books.


Hsin-Ya Liao

Associate Professor
Psychology (Pullman)
hsinya.liao@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Role of culture, diversity, and intergroup relations on well-being; cross-cultural assessment; stigma and help-seeking; vocational interests; cognitive and personality assessment; psychotherapy and counseling skills; multicultural psychology; research methods; and statistics and measurement

Previous post: College of Education, WSU Pullman

Education and training: Postdoctoral Fellowship, quantitative methods, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; PhD, counseling psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; MA, counselor education in psychology, New York University; BS, psychology, National Taiwan University

Honors and achievements: NIMH NRSA Postdoctoral Fellowship; NIH grant on functional social support for persons with serious mental illness; and Pauline E. Thompson education endowments, College of Education, WSU

Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my family on tennis, gardening, and traveling.


Chang Liu

Assistant Professor
Psychology (Pullman)
c.liu@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Maternal-child health inequities; child social-emotional development; developmental psychopathology; childhood obesity; research methods (dynamic system approach; behavioral genetics approach)

Previous post: George Washington University
Education and training: PhD, MS The Pennsylvania State University; BS, Beijing Normal University

Honors and achievements: ECHO Opportunities and Infrastructure Fund Component (OIF) Cycle 3 awardee, NIH-ECHO; Strumpf Scholarship, Penn State

Outside of work, I enjoy hiking, traveling, and shopping.


Jessica McCarthy

Assistant Professor, Career Track
English (Global)
jesmccarthy@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Late-19th– and early-20th-century American fiction, particularly literary naturalism and the work of women writers, as well as transatlantic naturalism; American literature; and professional writing

Previous post: WSU

Education and training: PhD, MA, Washington State University; BA, University of Washington

Honors and achievements: “Naturalism and the New Woman in Ellen Glasgow’s Barren Ground: ‘How Hard She Had Worked!’” in Working Women in American Literature; “Edith Wharton: Modern Critical Interpretations” in Edith Wharton in Context; Blackburn Postdoctoral Fellowship, WSU, 2009

Outside of work, I enjoy spending time with my children, gardening, baking, and travel.


Colin Criss McNamara

Assistant Professor, Career Track
English (Pullman)
colin.criss@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Contemporary American poetry, creative writing, Irish poetry, and international poetry

Previous post: Washington University, St. Louis

Education and training: MFA, poetry, Washington University; BA, sociology, Harvard University

Honors and achievements: Author of poems appearing or forthcoming in Ploughshares, Grist, Midwest Review, New Limestone Review, and elsewhere

Outside of work, I enjoy playing hickory golf with clubs made before 1930, and the Adirondacks, where I’m from and where my two Sawyer solo canoes are stored.


Kimberly “Kim” Meidenbauer

Assistant Professor
Psychology (Pullman, spring 2023)
k.meidenbauer@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Effects of physical environmental factors (heat, greenspace, air quality) on emotion, cognition, and social behaviors; links between heat stress and violent crime; role of environmental racism in mental health disparities; using neuroimaging methods (fNIRS) in naturalistic settings

Previous post: University of Chicago

Education and training: PhD, University of Chicago; MA, psychology, integrative neuroscience, University of Chicago; BA, psychology, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Honors and achievements: NSF SBE Postdoctoral Research Fellowship (rated highly competitive for funding, withdrawn upon acceptance of WSU position); William Rainey Harper Dissertation Year Fellowship; publications in flagship journals for environmental psychology and neuroscience

Outside of work, I enjoy exercising, especially biking and hiking outdoors, soccer, dancing, yoga, traveling with my spouse, and spoiling our two cats.


Eliseo Ortiz Menchaca

Assistant Professor, Career Track
Digital Technology and Culture (Pullman)
e.ortizmenchaca@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Various symbolisms of reactive nationalisms in the context of the U.S.–Mexico borders; and the role of tactical media art and hacktivism in dismantling systems of oppression such as the criminalization and exploitation of border crossings

Previous post: University of Colorado, Boulder

Education and training: PhD, emergent technologies and media arts practices, University of Colorado, Boulder; MFA, media arts production, SUNY University at Buffalo

Honors and achievements: Fulbright Fellowship, 2012; National Fund for Culture and Arts of Mexico, 2014; CONARTE Nuevo León, 2015; and CU Boulder Media Archaeology Lab Fellowship, 2020

Outside of work, I enjoy outdoor activities, like hiking, biking, and nature photography; graffiti art and other artistic manifestations that reclaim use of deprived public spaces; taking care of plants and observing trees; and searching for thrift-store hidden treasures.


Adnan Nahlawi

Research Assistant Professor
Physics and Astronomy (Pullman)
adnan.nahlawi@wsu.edu

Research interests: Experimental atomic, molecular, and optical physics; spin dynamics and magnetic resonance in gas-phase systems and condensed matter; spin-dependent electronic processes in organic polymers; and understanding the intrinsic physics of spin-exchange optical pumping (SEOP) in alkali-noble gas mixtures, including relaxation mechanisms of polarized alkali-metals and hyperpolarized noble gases

Previous post: WSU Pullman

Education and training: PhD, MSc, physics, University of Utah; MSc, physics, American University of Beirut; BSc, physics, Lebanese University

Outside of work, I enjoy fixing/upgrading things around the house, playing with my cat, and making Middle Eastern desserts with my wife.


Michael Pelch

Associate Professor, Career Track
Environment (Pullman)
michael.pelch@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Geoscience and geoscience education, particularly connecting geoscience with the modern world; active learning; evidence-based teaching practices; course design and pedagogical strategies; the roles of emotions, emotional intelligence, science identity, and student learning in introductory science courses; and quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-methods experimental designs

Previous post: Texas Christian University

Education and training: PhD, marine, Earth, and atmospheric science, North Carolina State University; MS, BS, geology, University of Missouri; infantry officer, United States Marine Corps, 2004–09

Honors and achievements: Author, “What can we learn from the science identity narratives of first-generation college students?” in SN Social Sciences

Outside of work, I enjoy anything related to the mountains and the outdoors, including mountain biking, hiking, camping, and exploring with my family.


Callie Phillips

Assistant Professor, Career-Track
Politics, Philosophy, and Public Affairs (Pullman)
callie.phillips@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Metaphysics, philosophy of mind, philosophy of language, practical reason, and philosophy of technology

Previous post: College of Charleston

Education and training: PhD, University of Notre Dame; BA, University of Kentucky

Honors and achievements: “Why Future-Bias Isn’t Rationally Evaluable,” Res Philosophica, 2021; “Why Is there Something Rather than Nothing? The Substantivity of the Question for Quantifier Pluralists,” Erkenntnis, 2021; “Common Ground and Charity in Conflict,” Acta Analytica, forthcoming

Outside of work, what do you enjoy sewing, knitting, hiking, and reading science fiction.


Cecilia Rodriguez-Furlan

Assistant Professor
Biological Sciences (Pullman)
c.rodriguezfurlan@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Mechanisms that regulate plant endomembrane trafficking and their ability to modulate diverse cellular responses; the coordination and regulation of endomembrane traffic during stress; and translating new understanding about stress responses to crops

Previous post: University of California, Riverside

Education and training: Postdoc, UC Riverside; PhD, biotechnology, Universidad Andres Bello, Chile; BS, molecular biology, Universidad Nacional de San Luis, Argentina

Honors and achievements: CONICYT Fellowship for PhD students, Chile; coauthor, “Distinct Mechanisms Orchestrate the Contra-polarity of IRK and KOIN, Two LRR-Receptor-Kinases Controlling Root Cell Division” in Nature Communications, 2022; coauthor, “Interaction Between VPS34 and RABG3F Is Necessary as a Checkpoint to Control Fusion of Late Compartments with the Vacuole” in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 2019

Outside of work, I enjoy traveling, getting to know new places, meeting people from all over the world, and tasting exotic vegetarian foods, as well as reading history, being a geek for science fiction and fantasy (no, they are not the same), and outdoor sports.


Anjali Sharma

Assistant Professor
Chemistry (Pullman)
anjali.sharma@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Development of rationally designed, clinically translatable novel nano-structures for target-specific drug delivery applications across various biological barriers

Previous post: Johns Hopkins Center for Nanomedicine

Education and training: Research faculty member and postdoctoral training, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; PhD, chemistry, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada

Honors and achievements: Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Functional Polymeric Biomaterials, 2021 (Declined); Wilmer Pooled Professor Research Fund, 2020; Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) visiting fellowship for Canadian National Laboratories, 2015

Outside of work, I enjoy cooking, traveling, and having fun with my family.


Robert “Xach” Williams

Assistant Professor, Career Track
Languages, Cultures, and Race (Pullman)
rzwilliams@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Ways that material conditions of anti-black racism, segregation, and exclusion affect development of the Pacific Northwest from the mid-19th to mid-20th centuries, highlighting the contributions of Black communities and the centrality of blackness to development of the PNW over time

Previous post: University of California, San Diego

Education and training: PhD, MA, ethnic studies, UC, San Diego; BA, comparative ethnic studies, WSU

Honors and achievements: UC, San Diego Black Studies Project Inaugural Post-Doctoral Research Fellow, 2020 – 2021; “Views of race, reparations, and private property from the place of blackness in the Pacific Northwest,” Ethnic Studies Review, forthcoming; Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Teaching Award, UCSD, 2018

Outside of work, I enjoy exercising, reading fiction—especially Agatha Christie’s Poirot novels, Robert Jordan, Octavia Butler, Nella Larson, and Frank Herbert—and watching baseball.


Christopher Wilson

Assistant Professor, Career Track
Music (Pullman)
christopher.wilson1@wsu.edu

Teaching and research interests: Percussion applied studio, percussion ensemble, marching band direction, beginning percussion pedagogy, orchestral percussion, classical chamber music, and solo marimba

Previous posts: WSU Pullman, McKendree University, and Southeast Missouri State University

Education and training: DA Mus, percussion performance, University of Northern Colorado; MMus, percussion performance, Boston Conservatory; BMus, percussion performance, Eastern Washington University

Honors and achievements: Percussive Arts Society Washington Chapter President, Guest Artist soloist: Idaho Bach Festival, National Conference on Percussion Pedagogy, Percussive Arts Society International Conference

Outside of work, I enjoy grilling, walking, and traveling.


Jeanetta Bennett

Assistant Professor, Career Track
English (Pullman)
jeanetta.bennett@wsu.edu