Category: Faculty and Staff


Galveston College professors earn doctoral degrees

Congratulations to Galveston College professors, Dr. Conrad Breitbach and Dr. Janene Amyx Davison, on the completion of their doctoral studies at Texas Tech University at Lubbock.

Dr. Conrad Breitbach

Dr. Breitbach has earned a doctorate from the College of Education at Texas Tech, where his dissertation focused on the “Exploration of Practices of Texas Public Community College Presidents for Working Effectively with Their Board of Trustees.” The specific foci of the study were the perceptions and experiences of presidents of how board composition, board member training, and perceptions of trust affect their working relationships with their board members.

Dr. Breitbach has worked in the field of kinesiology since 1998 and has taught in higher education since 2001. He earned undergraduate and master’s degrees in Sports Science from the University of Idaho, where he played collegiate rugby. While in graduate school at the University of Idaho Center for (Sports) ETHICS, he developed models of leadership studies/curricula that have been used by high school, college and professionals sports teams, including the Los Angeles Chargers and Atlanta Braves. He received an Inspirational Graduate Award upon completing his master’s degree from the University of Idaho. During and after graduate school, he worked as a strength and conditioning coach. He also played in the European Rugby Union for several years.

Dr. Breitbach is currently an associate professor and director of Arts and Humanities at Galveston College. He earned tenure in 2008 and served as faculty senate president from 2008 to 2011. During his tenure at Galveston College, he has assumed many leadership roles and has chaired and participated in various task forces, accreditations, certifications and committees.

Dr. Janene Davison

Dr. Davison has earned a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Technical Communication and Rhetoric from Texas Tech. Her dissertation, titled “Vulnerable Entanglements: Self-Care as a Rhetorical Practice of Embodied Resistance,” examined the intersection of self-care, activism and vulnerability, considering how “non-normative” bodies could be used as tools to push back against discrimination while working toward individual flourishing. Her other research interests include material feminism and ethics.

Dr. Davison has worked in the field of communication since 1996 and has taught in higher education since 2004. After graduating from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Communication, Dr. Davison worked in medical marketing before going on to earn a Master of Arts in Mass Communication from the University of Houston.

Dr. Davison is currently an assistant professor and coordinator of Speech Communication at Galveston College and has served as the faculty senate president since 2019. She was awarded tenure in 2012, and she has twice been recognized for her exceptional service. From 2012-2020, she served as the college’s Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges Quality Enhancement Plan director where she worked with faculty across disciplines to improve students’ content-area reading skills.

Dr. Cissy Matthews receives Lindle Grigsby Leadership Award from Texas Association of College Technical Educators

Dr. Cissy Matthews, vice president of instruction at Galveston College, recently received the Lindle Grigsby Leadership Award from the Texas Association of College Technical Educators.

The Lindle Grigsby Leadership Award was created in 2012 to recognize one of the association’s members who has demonstrated outstanding leadership skills and dedication to the organization. The award was presented to Lindle Grigsby the first year for his many years of dedication and service to TACTE.

The recipient must be a current member of TACTE and an individual who has demonstrated the following characteristics:

initiative and competence in accomplishing the goals and tasks of career and technical education;
forethought in providing a vision for the future;
models community college instructional leadership that inspires others;
implementation of student success strategies; and
dedication to local and state issues related to career and technical education.

Dr. Mathews has more than 20 years of experience in career and technical education (CTE). She started in CTE as an emergency medical services faculty member at College of the Mainland in Texas City in 1998. Later, she became the dean of workforce and continuing education at COM. While in this role, the college implemented several new CTE programs, particularly in allied health areas.

Since Dr. Matthews joined Galveston College, where about 40 percent of the programs and enrollments are related to career and technical education, the college has added many CTE programs, including Cosmetology, Electrical and Electronics Technology, Computer and Network Administration, Surgical Technology, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Instrumentation Technology and Logistics. In 2019, the college added its first bachelor’s degree – a Bachelor of Applied Science in Healthcare Management, which allows graduates with associate degrees in allied health fields to pursue a fully online bachelor’s degree at the cost of a community college education.

Dr. Matthews joined TACTE in 2002 and served as president from 2013-2015. In addition to serving on the board of directors, she served two terms as treasurer and on conference planning committees and various other committees that support, encourage, and advocate for career and technical education.

“Dr. Matthews is responsible for the majority of the people that currently serve on the TACTE board through either individual recruitment or through her continued service as the chair of the TACTE Election Committee,” said Alexander Okwonna, president of TACTE in announcing the award.

“She has always been and continues to be a shining example of CTE loyalty, love and service.”

2021 Employee Awards Celebration

Galveston College recognizes excellence at 2021 Employee Awards Celebration

It was a virtual celebration of excellence on Friday, as the Galveston College campus community joined together via Zoom videoconference to applaud their peers’ outstanding achievements and highlight college programs at the annual Employee Awards Celebration.

With a theme of “Years of Wonderful Programs Creating a Brighter Future,” the event featured last year’s honorees in zany video clips that showcased the college — from the Allied Health programs to the Whitecaps softball team.

Twenty faculty and staff members were honored with exceptional performance awards and milestones awards for years of service at the college.

Regent Carroll Sunseri with the Galveston Community College District Board of Regents received an award for 30 years of volunteer service to the college. Regent Armin Cantini and Regent Ray Lewis received awards for 10 years of volunteer service to the college.

Exceptional Service Award recipients included Jay Castillo, Financial Aid, and Maria Garcia, Office of the Vice President of Instruction, classified staff recipients; Kara Fahringer-Baer, Testing Center, professional-technical staff recipient; Dr. Larry Blomstedt, History and Government, and Don Davison, Business Administration and Management, faculty recipients; and Brandi Castillo, Developmental Mathematics, adjunct faculty recipient.

Mari Macias and Wayne Way were honored for 20 years of service to the college. Tia Campbell-Benson, Nikki Montoya, Pat Perry, Dr. James Salazar and Jonathan Walker were recognized for 15 years of service.

Cordetta Knatt, Amy Leuchtag and Eugene Walker received awards for 10 years of service. Kris Blackmon, James Love, Elizabeth Quilantan and Athena Sempe were recognized for five years of service.

Retirees in 2020-21 who were honored at the event included Valencia Allen, Jose Garcia, Pat Perry, Erma Phillips, Dr. James Salazar and Tim Setzer.

Congratulations to all the honorees!

Dr. Larry Blomstedt
2021 Exceptional Service Award Faculty Recipient

Don Davison
2021 Exceptional Service Award Faculty Recipient

Brandi Castillo
2021 Exceptional Service Award Adunct Faculty Recipient

Jay Castillo
2021 Exceptional Service Award Classified Staff Recipient

Maria Garcia
2021 Exceptional Service Award Classifid Staff Recipient

Kara Fahringer-Baer
2021 Exceptional Service Award Professional-Technical Staff Recipient

Dr. Kimberly Fain

Speaker to discuss ‘Black Hollywood: How African Americans Gain Agency and Empowerment in the Movie Industry’

The audience will have a front-row seat as Galveston College continues its 2021 virtual lecture series on Diversity, Inclusion and Empowerment with “Black Hollywood: How African Americans Gain Agency and Empowerment in the Movie Industry” featuring Dr. Kimberly Fain on Tuesday, April 27, at 6:30 p.m. via Zoom video conference.

Dr. Fain is a visiting professor at Texas Southern University, an author and a licensed attorney. She holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Technical Communication and Rhetoric from Texas Tech University, a Juris Doctor from Thurgood Marshall School of Law, a Master of Arts from Texas Southern University and a Bachelor of Arts from Texas A&M University at College Station.

A featured speaker on national radio shows and podcasts, Dr. Fain’s publications include books, reviews, essays, and chapters in various journals and presses, such as Buffalo Journal of Gender, Law & Social Policy, JSTOR Daily, McFarland, Modern Fiction Studies, National Book Review, Ploughshares, Scarecrow and Southern Studies.

She has served as associate editor of World Literary Review and has published three books: “African American Literature Anthology: Slavery, Liberation and Resistance,” “Black Hollywood: From Butlers to Superheroes, the Changing Role of African American Men in the Movies” and “Colson Whitehead: The Postracial Voice of Contemporary Literature.”

For her 2017 blog series in Ploughshares, “The Black Aesthetic,” she published essays on the musical revolution and the cultural rhetoric of Beyoncé, Jay-Z, Kendrick Lamar, Prince and SZA. Her series claims, “When poetry is set to music, harmonious beats relay liberating feelings that transcend history and culture.”

“We are very excited to have Dr. Fain present at our lecture series. The presentation will surely enrich our view on Diversity, Inclusion and Empowerment in American culture and the movie industry in the United States,” said Dr. Laimutis Bytautas, chair of the Faculty Professional Development Committee at Galveston College. “We would like to invite all of you to this exciting lecture and to share this invitation with your family and friends.”

To access the April 27 lecture, visit the following Zoom link on the internet:

Meeting ID is 841 3687 0565. Passcode is Galveston.

For more information about the Galveston College lecture series, please contact Dr. Laimutis Bytautas, chair of the Faculty Professional Development Committee, at

Martin Crichlow

Galveston College student success advisor to be featured on national podcast

Galveston College Student Success Advisor Martin Crichlow will be featured this week on the national podcast “Careers in Higher Education,” discussing what it’s like to work as an academic advisor at a community college.

“Careers in Higher Education” (CHE) is a weekly podcast exploring pathways and functional areas for those interested in pursuing a career working at colleges and universities.

Each week features a different higher education professional in a specific area of higher education who shares stories and advice from their professional journeys.

The podcast is scheduled to be released Friday, April 23, at 8 a.m. and can be accessed at

Crichlow, originally from Columbus, Ohio, and raised in Phoenix, Arizona, serves as the student success advisor for the Charlie Thomas Family Applied Technology Center at Galveston College.

A lifelong college administrator, he began his student affairs career in residential life as a resident director at Northwest College in Powell, Wyoming. He has served in a variety of student affairs positions within diverse institutions of higher learning (community colleges and universities).

Crichlow’s professional skill set focuses on project management, program development, training, advising, recruitment and retention. He possesses more than 22 years of leadership and management experience, in which he has supervised the performance of team members, interceded to resolve problems, and delivered training on improving efficiencies and client services. He is often instrumental in establishing department infrastructure, job descriptions, office policies and cost-saving practices. In addition, he has served in a leadership capacity on regional and national committees for his professional associations.

Crichlow holds a bachelor’s degree in Middle Eastern History from Oral Roberts University, where he graduated cum laude, and a Master of Science in Student Affairs in Higher Education Administration from Colorado State University. In addition, he studied abroad at Institute of Touraine (France) and University of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) in West Africa.

Crichlow is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. He enjoys spending quality time with his 16-year-old son Reece. His hobbies include travel, spending time at the beach and the search for the perfect steak and barbecue ribs.

Kelly Merry

Galveston College announces new director of development and Galveston College Foundation

Kelly Merry has joined Galveston College as director of development and the Galveston College Foundation.

Merry has 18 years of experience working as a development professional, with individual success in major gift, planned gift, capital campaign, donor relations, and annual gift work, as well as organizational success in leading and growing a development team.

“Kelly brings to us extensive fundraising experience in a variety of areas, and I am extremely impressed with her enthusiasm, knowledge and commitment to student success,” said Dr. Myles Shelton, college president. “The search committee did a wonderful job in finding the right candidate in Kelly. She understands the mission of Galveston College, our students and our community. We are truly excited to have her join our team.”

Merry most recently served as a foundation director at a children’s hospital in the Pacific Northwest where she worked on a $1 billion campaign. She has served on the boards of directors and executive committees of the Association of Fundraising Professionals Washington Chapter and Washington Planned Giving Council, where she most recently served as immediate past president. She is a past member of the Puget Sound Chapter of the Penn State Alumni Association’s Board of Directors and is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society.

Merry holds a certificate in fundraising management from the University of Washington and a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a minor in information systems and statistical analysis from the Schreyer Honors College at Pennsylvania State University.

Merry said she is excited to join the Galveston College family.

“The rich history of Galveston Island, the vibrancy of its community and the positive impact Galveston College has on its students drew me to this position,” she said. “I look forward to immersing myself in the community and helping support the vision of a progressive, dynamic institution of higher education known for its partnerships with businesses and organizations and its commitment to provide a quality learning environment that is student-focused.”

Kourtney Moore Lecture

Galveston College lecture to focus on hip-hop and African-American culture concerning systemic racism and oppression

Galveston College will offer the public a front-row seat at its first lecture of the 2020-2021 academic year as Dr. Kourtney Moore takes the mic to present “I Still Love H.E.R.: Hip-Hop and African-American Culture Concerning Systemic Racism and Oppression” on Monday, Nov. 2, at 6 p.m. via Zoom videoconference.

Dr. Moore is currently a basic skills instructor for Cape Fear Community College (New Hanover Correctional Center) in Wilmington, North Carolina. She is also a technical writer for Solugen, a bio-based specialty chemicals company in Houston.

Dr. Moore received her Doctor of Philosophy in Technical Communication and Rhetoric from Texas Tech University, a Master of Arts in Technical and Professional Communication from East Carolina University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Her research interests include social justice, hip-hop rhetoric and pedagogy, technical communication, and visual rhetoric and communication. Aside from work and research, Dr. Moore enjoys spending time with her family, exploring new cuisines, and cheering for LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.

“Dr. Moore’s scholarship makes a unique contribution by demonstrating the teaching power of hip-hop music and culture as a means of educating marginalized people on how to confront oppressive situations,” said Janene Davison, president of the Galveston College Faculty Senate.

“We are very excited to have Dr. Moore presenting at this year’s lecture series at Galveston College, which has the theme ‘Diversity, Inclusion and Empowerment,’” said Dr. Laimutis Bytautas, chair of the Galveston College Faculty Professional Development Committee. “We look forward to learning from Dr. Moore about a unique perspective that focuses on hip-hop and African-American culture in the quest of eliminating systemic racism.”

To access the event, visit The meeting ID is 893 9185 1220. The password is Galveston.

For more information, please contact Dr. Laimutis Bytautas at

Galveston College suspends operations for evacuation

Galveston College will suspend all on-campus and remote operations, effective Tuesday, Aug. 25, to allow all students, faculty and staff who reside on the island to evacuate safely. College operations will be reinstated when it is safe to do so.

The City of Galveston has issued a mandatory evacuation instructing all Galveston residents to begin leaving the island for safety after overnight models shifted the landfall of Hurricane Laura westward. City services will be suspended today at 12 p.m. People should be getting their plans together this morning for an evacuation. It is urgent that residents heed this mandatory evacuation and leave with all family members and pets.

Following the forecasted storm, Galveston College will announce additional information for the continuation of fall 2020 registration, student housing move-in and the beginning of classes.

Galveston College VP graduates from Leadership Galveston

Dr. Van Patterson, vice president for administration and student services at Galveston College, recently graduated from the Galveston Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Leadership Galveston Class of 2020.

Dr. Charles P. Mouton of UTMB Health, Leadership Galveston class president, gave an inspiring message to the graduates as they recounted their journeys through the program and explained how UTMB is working to treat and contain COVID-19.

“Leadership Galveston is an essential experience for anyone who is or could be a potential leader,” said Dr. Mouton. “It provides you with the skills and insight to make a meaningful contribution to the greater Galveston community. It also gives you the connections and relationships to ensure that the work you do builds a bright future for our beloved island.”

Founded in 1984, Leadership Galveston is a dynamic and interactive eight-month experience designed to provide the community with an enduring source of leaders who are prepared and committed to serving their region.

In 2018, the Chamber’s Leadership Advisory Board, comprised of the program’s pivotal partner, the Moody Foundation, as well as, representatives from UTMB Health, Galveston College and other consultants, worked diligently to structure the class curriculum to include an in-depth look at the critical issues and opportunities within the community. The program is overseen by Lorraine Grubbs, director of membership of the Galveston Regional Chamber of Commerce and Carrie Davis, stage manager of The Grand 1894 Opera House.

Galveston College announces tenure of four faculty members

Galveston College announced the tenure of four faculty members following completion of the tenure review process and conferment on June 10 by the Galveston Community College District Board of Regents.

Tenure has been awarded to the following faculty members:

Clint A. Jones
Developmental Mathematics

Anna E. (Liz) Lacy
Performing Arts

Dr. David Shane Wallace
English and Humanities

Arlinda Washington

Dr. Arlinda B. Washington