SELECTED FACULTY AND STAFF EXPERTISE

Natalie Y. Arnett, Ph.D.
Department/Division: Life and Physical Sciences Department/Chemistry
Contact Phone Number(s):615.329.8780
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Synthesis and characterization of functional polymers for fuel cells, reverse osmosis and drug delivery

Lean’tin Bracks, Ph.D.
Title:  Associate Professor of African American Literature, Discipline Coordinator for English and Chairperson, Department of Arts and Languages
Department/Division: Department of Arts and Languages/ School of Humanities and Behavioral Social Sciences
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8533
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): African American Literature, Women of the African Diaspora, and the Slavery Narrative

Shirley Rainey-Brown, Ph.D
Associate Vice Provost for Online Initiatives, Director of Distance Learning, Professor of Sociology and Discipline Coordinator
Department/Division: Sociology/Provost Office
Contact Phone Number(s) 615-329-8765 or 931-302-8804
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Environmental Justice, Race, Gender and Class, and Online Learning

Arnold Burger, Ph.D
Title: Professor of Physics and Co-Founder, Fisk-Vanderbilt Master’s to Ph.D. Bridge Program
Department/Division: Life and Physical Sciences/School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Business
Contact Phone Number(s): Office: 615.329.8516;Cell: (615)521-1719
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Nuclear radiation sensors and imagers for biological, medical, space, and national security applications; Materials Science; Solid State Physics; Crystal Growth

Ruben Cockrell, Ed.D
Title:  Adjunct Professor
Department/Division: Business Administration/ School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Business
Contact Phone Number: 615.752.9414
Contact e-mail: /
Specific Topics: Global Leadership; International Affairs; Mentorship; S.T.E.M., Entrepreneurship

Steven Damo, Ph.D.
Title: Assistant Professor of Chemistry, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology/ School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Business
Department: Life and Physical Sciences
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8559
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topics: antibiotic resistance, inflammation, cancer biology, drug design, bacterial pathogenesis, receptor signaling, structural biology, bioinformatics, biophysical chemistry, inorganic chemistry, physical chemistry, x-ray crystallography, NMR spectroscopy, STEM education, STEM retention, Master’s-to-Ph.D. bridge programs

Phyllis Freeman, Ph.D. 
Title: Associate Professor of Biology & Discipline Coordinator of Biology 
Department/Division: Department of Life and Physical Sciences 
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8664 
Contact Email Address:  
Specific Topic(s): Cell Biology; Genetics; S.T.E.M. Retention

Rodney S. Hanley, Ph.D.
Title: Professor of Biology & Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Department/Division: Life and Physical Sciences/School of Natural Sciences, Mathematics and Business and Office of the Provost
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8881
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Biogeography and modeling impacts of climate change on species distribution; global sustainability issues

Qingxia Li, Ph.D.
Department/Division: Mathematics and Computer Science
Contact Phone Number: 615.329.8542
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Applied Mathematics, Math Education, Fisk University Math Club

Tiffany Griffin-Minor, Ed.S., M.A.
Title: Director
Department/Division: Academic Excellence and Student Performance (AESP)
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8831
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Student Retention, Persistence and Degree Attainment; Student Support Services (academic)

Brian L. Nelms, Ph.D.
Title: Assistant Professor of Biology
Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
Fisk-Vanderbilt Masters-to-PhD Bridge Program
Contact Phone Number (s): 615.329.8625
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic (s): Research statement: We investigate the genetics of a small nematode, C. elegans, as a model to gain insight into the molecules needed to control dopamine neuron function

Emmanuel Rowe, Ph.D.
Title: Research Professor
Department/Division: Life and Physical Sciences
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8873
Contact Email Address:
Specific Topic(s): Material Science and Applications

Jamaal B. Sheats, M.F.A.
Title: Assistant Professor of Art & Curator and Director of Galleries
Department/Division: Fisk University Galleries
Contact Phone Number(s): 615.329.8720
Contact Email:
Specific Topic(s):  Fisk University Galleries; Repousse; Stieglitz Collection