Alumni News

2007-2008 Alumni News

Eric Gary Anderson (PhD 1994) is the director of a new interdisciplinary minor in Native American and indigenous studies at George Mason University. As vice president of the Southern American Studies Association, he will be hosting the organization’s biennial meeting in February 2009.

Joseph Anfuso (BA 1970) is the founder and president of the faith-based missions and relief organization, Forward Edge International. The organization is engaged in, among other projects, the long-term recovery effort in the Gulf Coast, building a “village” for children living in Nicaragua, and developing a feeding program for AIDS orphans in Kenya.

Sarah Aronson (BA 1984) published a young adult novel, Head Case, which was listed as a “quick pick title for reluctant readers” by the Young Adult Library Services Association.


Mary Baglivo (BA 1979), the Chief Executive Officer at Saatchi & Saatchi Americas, was named Advertising Woman of the Year by the Advertising Women of New York. She also received the Hall of Distinguished Alumni Award from the Rutgers University Alumni Federation.

Joan Baranow (PhD 1992), an assistant professor of English at Domenican University of California, produced the documentary, Healing Words: Poetry and Medicine, which was aired on the Public Broadcasting Service in July.

Danielle Bobker (PhD 2007), an assistant professor of English at Concordia University, won the Rutgers Graduate School–New Brunswick Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research.

Nick Bujak (BA 2007) is a student in the graduate program in English at Johns Hopkins University.

Max Cavitch (PhD 2001), an associate professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania, published American Elegy: The Poetry of Mourning form the Puritans to Whitman.

Alan Cheuse (PhD 1974), a professor of English at George Mason University and the book reviewer for the National Public Radio’s All Things Considered, published The Fires.

Amy Cedeno (BA 2003) has started a new job at the biopharmaceutical company, Covance.

Hillary Chute (PhD 2007), a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard Society of Fellows, delivered this year’s Schlesinger Lecture at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study. A recipient of Harvard’s William F. Milton Fund fellowship, she has recent and forthcoming articles in PMLA, Mfs: Modern Fiction Studies, and Women’s Studies Quarterly.

Barbara Crooker (BA 1967) published another poetry collection, Line Dance.

Christopher Crosbie (PhD 2007) will join the faculty at North Carolina State University as an assistant professor of English. The recipient of the J. Leeds Barroll Dissertation Prize from the Shakespeare Association of America, he published articles on Titus Andronicus in Shakespeare Quarterly and on The Spanish Tragedy in English Literary Renaissance.

Walter Cummins (RC 1957) published his short story collection, Local Music.

John DeLaurentis (BA 2006) is an English teacher at North Plainfield High School and a part-time lecturer in the modern Greek studies program at Rutgers University.

Junot Díaz (BA 1992), a professor of creative writing at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the fiction editor of the Boston Review, published The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao in 2007, which received much critical acclaim and was awarded the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the 2007 National Book Critics Award for Best Novel.

Monika Elbert (PhD 1987), a professor of English at Montclair State University, edited Enterprising Youth: Social Values and Acculturation in Nineteenth-Century American Children’s Literature.

Sarah Ellenzweig (PhD 2000), an assistant professor of English at Rice University, has a book, The Fringes of Belief: English Literature, Ancient Heresy, and the Politics of Freethinking, 1660-1760, forthcoming from Stanford University Press.

Jane Elliott (PhD 2004), a lecturer at the University of York, published Popular Feminist Fiction as American Allegory: Representing National Time.

Jason Gieger (PhD 2001), an assistant professor of English at California State University, Sacramento, received tenure in 2007.

Andrew M. Gordon (BA 1965) published Empire of Dreams: The Science Fiction and Fantasy Films of Steven Spielberg and was promoted to the rank of full professor in the English department at the University of Florida.

Lindsay Halladay (BA 2002), an actress and hip-hop artist based in Los Angeles, has finished shooting the film, A Perfect Getaway, starring Steve Zahn and Milla Jovovich.

Robert Harper (BA 1974), a professional actor, delivered the commencement address for University College at Rutgers in May 2007.

Penny Harter (BA 1961) published another poetry collection, The Night Marsh.

George Held (PhD 1967) published his poetry collection, W is for War.

Matthew Hersh (BA 2003)
has been hired as the associate editor for Shelterforce Magazine, the publication of the National Housing Institute, a national research and policy organization dedicated to fostering decent, affordable housing for everyone.

Jaime Hovey (PhD 1995) published A Thousand Words: Portraiture, Style, and Queer Modernism.

Natasha Hurley (PhD 2007)
, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Alberta, was awarded a fellowship jointly funded by the American Antiquarian Society and the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies.

Eric Hyman (PhD 1984), a professor of English at Fayetteville State University, published articles on The Two Gentleman of Verona in Explicator and on the southern American term “you-all” in American Speech.

Michael Jones (RC 1970)
has retired from his position as principal of Lexington High School, in Massachusetts, after thirty-two years of teaching and service in public education.

Alex Kasavin (BA 2007)
started a new job at Austin-based Enspire Learning, a company providing multimedia rich elearning solutions.

Diane Kiesel (DC 1975)
, an acting New York Supreme Court Justice and an adjunct professor of law at New York Law School, published Domestic Violence: Law, Policy, and Practice.

Robert Kirkpatrick (BA 1990)
, a senior editor at Thomas Dunne Books, published The Words and Music of Bruce Springsteen.

Julian Koslow (PhD 2005)
will join the faculty at Virginia Tech as an assistant professor of English.

Eric Krebs (MA 1973)
produced an off-Broadway play entitled The Castle.

Andrew Krivak (MA 2002)
published a memoir, A Long Retreat: In Search of a Religious Life, and read in Writers from Rutgers reading series.

Vincent A. Lankewish (PhD 1997)
received tenure at the Professional Performing Arts School in New York City, and published articles on teaching Walter Pater in high school in The Pater Newsletter and on gay male dance culture in On the Meaning of Friendship between Gay Men.

Marilee Lindemann (PhD 1991), an associate professor of English at the University of Maryland, College Park, delivered the second annual Rutgers English Graduate Alumni Lecture in November. She was the recipient of the Michael Lynch Service Award, given by the Modern Language Association Gay, Lesbian, Queer Caucus, for her work as the director of the LGBT Studies program at the University of Maryland and her innovative scholarship and teaching in queer studies. In April, she organized a two-day queer studies conference which brought together faculty and graduate students from the consortium of universities in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

Beth Loffreda (PhD 1997)
is the new director of the MFA program in creative writing at the University of Wyoming. She was featured as a speaker in the Writers from Rutgers reading series.

Kathleen Lubey (PhD 2005)
, an assistant professor of English at St. John’s University, published an article on Joseph Addison in Eighteenth-Century Fiction. She will be an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Humanities Forum during the next academic year.

Saikat Majumdar (PhD 2005)
, an assistant professor of English at Stanford University, published a novel, Silverfish.

Bill Matthews (BA 1981)
, the senior director of development research and prospect management at the Rutgers University Foundation, published three poems in Adagio Verse Quarterly.

Dawn Miller (BA 1989)
published Portrait of Vengeance and Murderous Descent.

E. B. Moss (RC 1979)
, the founder of the marketing and promotions services company, Moss Appeal, published an opinion piece for the Corporate Social Responsibility Newswire, CSRwire.com, and was featured in articles in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal.

Alicia Nadkarni (BA 2005)
was promoted to production editor at Rutgers University Press.

Brian Norman (PhD 2004)
published The American Protest Essay and National Belonging: Addressing Division and will be joining the faculty at Loyola College in Maryland as an assistant professor of English.

Peggy Phelan (PhD 1987)
, the Ann O’Day Maples Chair in the Arts and a professor of drama and English at Stanford University, received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Graduate School-New Brunswick.

Robert Pinsky (BA 1962)
, a professor of English at Boston University, published Gulf Music.

Martin Joseph Ponce (PhD 2005), an assistant professor of English at The Ohio State University, published an article on Filipino diaspora studies in Philippine Studies, and spent the summer conducting research at the University of the Philippines and Ateneo de Manila University for his book project on the relationship between Filipino studies and Asian American studies.

Adam Potkay (PhD 1990), the Margaret L. Hamilton Professor of English at the College of William & Mary, published The Story of Joy: From the Bible to Late Romanticism, an article on William Wordsworth in PMLA, and an omnibus review of recent scholarship in eighteenth century studies in SEL: Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900. He also edited a Longman Cultural Edition of The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews. A newly appointed member of the PMLA editorial board, he gave invited lectures at Princeton University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the University of Michigan. He will deliver the third annual Rutgers English Graduate Alumni Lecture in November 2008.

Carrie Preston (PhD 2006)
, an assistant professor of English and women’s studies at Boston University, was named a Peter Paul Career Development Professor in 2007. The professorship was created with support from entrepreneur Peter T. Paul, president of Paul Financial, LLC, to help Boston University recruit and retain promising young faculty. She will use the award to begin a book project that traces the influence of Japanese Noh theater on transnational modernism.

Gina Restivo (BA 2000)
, a student at the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology at Rutgers, has accepted an internship with the Central School District in Hawai’i to fulfill requirements towards her PsyD degree.

Kenneth Rodgers (BA 1996
), a senior producer for NFL Films and the NFL Network, was recognized for his work on America’s Game: The Super Bowl Champions, with a Sports Emmy Award for outstanding edited sports series. He is producing a new season of the HBO series, Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Dallas Cowboys, and directing Disney’s “What’s Next?” commercial campaign. In 2007, the series Hard Knocks was nominated for three Sports Emmy Awards and won the Emmy in the outstanding music composition category.

Michael D. Rubenstein (PhD 2003 )
, an assistant professor of English at the University of California, Berkeley, has an article on reading and human rights forthcoming in Social Text.

Annette Saddik (PhD 1995)
, an associate professor at the New York College of Technology at the City University of New York, published Contemporary American Drama and edited The Traveling Companion and Other Plays by Tennessee Williams.

Andrew P. Scheil (BA 1990)
, an associate professor of English of the University of Minnesota, received the Medieval Academy of America’s John Nicholas Brown Prize and the Best First Book Award from the International Society of Anglo-Saxonists for Footsteps of Israel: Understanding Jews in Anglo-Saxon England.

Gary Seigel (PhD 1981)
published The Mouth Trap: Strategies, Tips, and Secrets to Keep Your Foot Out of Your Mouth.

Barbara Timmerman Soifer (BA 1992)
was promoted to director of marketing services at IEEE, a non-profit organization and the world’s leading professional association for the advancement of technology.
Nicole D. Smith (PhD 2005), an assistant professor of English at the University of North Texas, has a forthcoming article on Marie de France’s Guigemar in Medium Ævum.

Martha Nell Smith (PhD 1985)
, a professor of English and the founding director of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH) at the University of Maryland, College Park, co-edited A Companion to Emily Dickinson. Her Emily Dickinson: A User’s Guide is forthcoming from Blackwell as part of its Introduction to Literature Series. Another project, Emily Dickinson’s Correspondence: A Born-Digital Inquiry, is forthcoming from the University of Virginia Press Electronic Imprint.

Richard Squibbs (PhD 2007)
will join the faculty at DePaul University as an assistant professor of English. He has a forthcoming article on the periodical essay in Modern Philology.

Kate Stanton (PhD 2003)
, a lecturer in women’s and gender studies and the Allston Burr Resident Dean at Harvard College, was awarded a certificate of distinction in teaching by Harvard University.

Jason Teeple (BA 1995)
works as a product developer for Vantage and is a part-time student in a doctoral program at the University of Brighton.

Michael Thompson (BA 1995)
published The Politics of Inequality: A Political History of the Idea of Economic Inequality in America, edited Confronting the New Conservatism: The Rise of the Right in America, and co-edited The Logos Reader: Rational Radicalism and the Future of Politics.

David Toise (PhD 1996)
, an assistant professor of English at California State University, Sacramento, received tenure in 2006.

Ken Urban (PhD 2006)
, a preceptor in expository writing at Harvard University, published articles on 1990s British theater in Cool Britannia: British Political Drama in the 1990s, on Philip Ridley in Modern Drama, and on Sarah Kane in A Concise Companion to Contemporary British and Irish Drama. Three of his plays opened in the last year: The Private Lives of Eskimos, The Happy Sad, and Tecmessa. The recipient of a playwriting fellowship from Boston’s Huntington Theatre Company, he was named a 2007 Person of the Year by nytheatre.com.

Lesley Wheeler (BA 1989)
, a professor of English at Washington and Lee University, published Scholarship Girl and Voicing American Poetry: Sound and Performance from the 1920s to the Present, and edited Letters to the World: Poems from the Wom-Po Listserv.

Grant Wythoff (BA 2007)
is a student in the graduate program in English at Princeton University.

Sandra Young (PhD 2008)
is an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of English Language and Literature at the University of Cape Town, South Africa.