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2015 Election Slate for RSA Board Members

Presented by the 2015 Nominating Committee
Kris Ratcliffe, Vanessa Beasley, Jeff Bennett


Faculty Members. The Nominating Committee forwards for RSA Board approval the following slate of candidates for the RSA Board Member election in the summer of 2015:

(1) Rhetoric & Composition Seat: Jessica Enoch (University of Maryland) and Lynée Lewis Gaillet (Georgia State University) 

(2) Rhetoric & Composition SeatChrista Olson (University of Wisconsin, Madison) and Ersula Ore (Arizona State University)

(3) Communication Seat: Ronald Greene (University of Minnesota) and John Lucaites (Indiana University)

(4) International Seat: René Agustín De los Santos at Universidad Autónoma de Baja California (UABC), Facultad de Idiomas and Kris Rutten (Ghent University)

Graduate Students: The Nominating Committee forwards for RSA Board approval the following slate of candidates for the RSA Board Member election in the summer of 2015:

(1)Rhetoric & Composition: Erin Cromer (Purdue University) and Erica Fischer (University of South Carolina)

(2) Communication: Matthew Houdek (University of Iowa) & Katie Irwin (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)


(1) Rhetoric & Composition Seat: Jessica Enoch (University of Maryland) and Lynée Lewis Gaillet (Georgia State University)

Jessica Enoch is Associate Professor of English at the University of Maryland. Her research interests include feminist rhetorics, historiographies of rhetoric and historiographic methodologies, rhetorical education, and Kenneth Burke. She is the author of Refiguring Rhetorical Education: Women Teaching African American, Native American, and Chicano/a Students, 1865-1911 (SIUP 2008) and the co-editor with Dana Anderson of Burke in the Archives: Using the Past to Transform the Future of Burkean Studies (USCP, 2012). Her current book project, titled “Domestic Occupations: Spatial Rhetorics of Home and Women’s Professionalization, 1830-1945,” investigates how the material and discursive constructions of the home have both enabled and constrained women’s entrance into professional occupations and spaces. She is also working with Cristina Ramírez on a critical, bilingual anthology, “Mestiza Rhetorics: An Anthology of Latina Rhetorical Activism at the US-Mexico Border, 1880-1920,” and an edited collection with Jordynn Jack focusing on feminist rhetorics, titled “Realizing the Dream: Essays in Pursuit of a Feminist Rhetoric.” Her essays have appeared in Rhetoric Society Quarterly, Rhetoric Review, College English, College Composition and Communication, Journal of Curriculum Studies, and Composition Studies.Back to Top

Lynée Lewis Gaillet is Professor of English at Georgia State University where she where she chairs the English Department. She is author of numerous articles and book chapters addressing Scottish rhetoric, writing program administration, composition/rhetoric pedagogy, publishing matters, and archival research methods—and is a recipient of an NEH Summer Research Award and ISHR Fellowship. Her book projects include: editor of Scottish Rhetoric and It Influence (1998); co-editor of Stories of Mentoring (2008), The Present State of Scholarship in the History of Rhetoric (2010), Publishing in Community: Case Studies for Contingent Faculty Collaborations (2015); and co-author of Scholarly Publication in a Changing Academic Landscape (2014) and Primary Research and Writing: People, Places, and Spaces (2015). She is the former Executive Director of SAMLA, Past-President of the Coalition of Women Scholars in the History of Rhetoric and Composition, and current sponsor of the GSU Rhetoric Society of America graduate student chapter.Back to Top

(2) Rhetoric & Composition Seat: Christa Olson (University of Wisconsin, Madison) and Ersula Ore (Arizona State University) 

Christa Olson is an Associate Professor of Composition & Rhetoric at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her scholarship in rhetorical history uses the artifacts and methods of visual culture to shed light on how publics, especially national publics, come into being, are maintained, and wield lasting persuasive influence. That work includes a particular focus on the Americas, drawing attention both to specific Latin American scenes and to the larger constitutive work done by appeals to the hemisphere. Her monograph, Constitutive Visions: Indigeneity and Commonplaces of National Identity in Republican Ecuador, uses multimodal rhetorical historiography to illuminate how https://ishr-web.org/aws/RSA/am/gi of indigenous people contributed to Ecuador’s emerging, evolving national identity in the nineteenth and twentieth century and to extend familiar theories of rhetorical constitution, topoi, and rhetorical sovereignty. Her current scholarship brings those insights back into the United States to investigate how hemispheric scenes have shaped U.S. rhetorics. She is the co-editor, along with René De los Santos, of the 2015 Special Issue of Rhetoric Society Quarterly entitled “La Idea de la Retórica Americana / The Idea of American Rhetoric,” and they co-led a workshop on the same theme at the 2015 RSA Summer Institute. Christa teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in rhetorical history, visual rhetoric, and research methods. She is currently the director of English 201, UW-Madison’s intermediate writing program. Over the past two years, she served on the planning committee for the 2015 RSA Summer Institute held in Madison. After serendipitously joining an RSA panel proposal during the first month of her first semester in graduate school, she has been an active RSA member for ten years and considers the organization her intellectual home.Back to Top

Ersula Ore is Assistant Professor of Rhetoric & Composition at Arizona State University, Tempe. Her work focuses on how rhetorics of race intersect with rhetorics of citizenship and civic identity. Her attention to the role racialized violence plays in the formation of American civic identity relies prominently on critical theories of race, constitutive theories of rhetoric, and black feminist theories of the body.Back to Top

(3) Communication Seat: Ronald Greene (University of Minnesota) and John Lucaites (Indiana University) 

Ronald Walter Greene is a Professor and the Chair of the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Minnesota. In addition to serving on the graduate faculty in Communication Studies, he serves on the graduate faculty of the Department of Writing Studies, the Graduate Minor in Rhetorical and Literacy Studies, the Department of Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies, Graduate Minor in the Moving Image Studies, and American Studies. He completed his Ph.D. at the University of Illinois with areas of specialization in rhetorical studies, cultural studies, and critical/interpretive theory. He has served as a leader in the National Communication Association (NCA) by chairing the Critical and Cultural Studies Division and the Rhetorical and Communication Theory Division—two of the five largest divisions of NCA. His primary research interests are in rhetorical theory and argumentation studies with a special concern about the material dimensions of rhetorical practices and the social dimensions of argumentation. He has been selected as Distinguished Scholar by the Critical and Cultural Studies Division of NCA and is the recipient of NCA’s Charles Woolbert Research Award for research that “become a stimulus for new conceptualizations of communication phenomena” for his essay “Another Materialist Rhetoric.” He has directed twenty dissertations and has sat on over thirty-five dissertation committees in such areas as Performance Studies, Media Studies, Comparative Literature, American Studies, and Writing Studies. His undergraduate and graduate teaching include courses in Classical, Modern and Contemporary Rhetorical Theory, Social Movements, Argumentation, and Critical Theory.Back to Top

John Louis Lucaites is Professor of Rhetoric and Public Culture and Associate Dean for Arts and Humanities in the College of Arts and Sciences at Indiana University. His research and teaching focus on argumentation and public advocacy, rhetorical theory (especially the problem of judgment), and visual rhetoric/citizenship. His most recent publications focus on the relationship between judgment, visuality, and public culture, including No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy (co-authored w/Robert Hariman, U of Chicago P) and Rhetoric, Politics, and Materiality (co-edited w/Barbara Biesecker, Peter Lang). He is also the senior editor for a books series on Rhetoric, Culture, and Social Critique for the University of Alabama Press and co-hosts a weekly blog on the role that photojournalism plays in underwriting liberal-democratic public culture (www.nocaptionneeded.com). He earned his BA at Rutgers, his MA at the University of North Carolina, and his Ph.D. at the University of Iowa. He has been teaching at Indiana University since 1987.Back to Top

(4) International Seat: René Agustín De los Santos at Universidad Autónoma de Baja California (UABC), Facultad de Idiomas and Kris Rutten (Ghent University)

René Agustín De los Santos, Profesor Titular, Universidad Autónoma de Baja California (UABC), Facultad de Idiomas. He studies presidential rhetoric, social movements, transnationalism, legal rhetoric, and nation building with a specific focus on Latin America, particularly Mexican rhetorical culture from the late nineteenth-century to the contemporary era. As a whole, his research interests engage a broader notion of America–one that includes North and South, Anglo- and Latin-. These interests pay close attention to how a Latin American perspective towards the history of rhetoric can help us understand the global project we call “rhetoric,” especially since 1492.

Additionally, he is a founding member of the Latin American Rhetoric Association (LARA), as well as head of its US Chapter. Founded in 2010, the Association was created to promote the study of historical and contemporary Latin American rhetorics, including those newly flourishing in the US, Canada, and other regions as a consequence of technological innovation and migrations associated with political, economic, educational, health, and environmental forces. Back to Top  

Kris Rutten is currently working as a post-doctoral researcher at the Department of Educational Studies of Ghent University (Belgium). He obtained a PhD in Educational Sciences with a dissertation on the rhetorical and narrative turn in education. His research focuses on the exploration of new rhetoric as a framework for educational theory, research and practice. He specifically develops research projects on introducing new rhetoric in general and the work of Kenneth Burke in particular in disciplines such as education (focus on teacher education), social work, psychology and medicine. Next to that, he has a specific interest in developing a rhetorical perspective on literacy that focuses on how literacy practices are rhetorically defined, explained and negotiated in relation to different contexts. He furthermore conducts research on digital rhetoric and intermediality. He guest edited several special issues on (new) rhetoric and education such as “Revisiting the Rhetorical Curriculum” (Journal of Curriculum Studies, 2012) and “Attitudes Toward Education: Kenneth Burke and New Rhetoric” (Studies in Philosophy and Education, forthcoming). He organized the international conference “Rhetoric as Equipment for Living” (Ghent, May 2013) and he received the KBS Emerging Scholar Award at the 9th triennial conference of the Kenneth Burke Society (St. Louis, July 2014). He is also a member of the board of the Rhetoric Society of Europe.Back to Top

Graduate Students: The Nominating Committee forwards for RSA Board approval the following slate of candidates for the RSA Board Member election in the summer of 2015:

(1)Rhetoric & Composition: Erin Cromer (Purdue University) and Erica Fischer (University of South Carolina)

Erin Cromer is a third-year PhD student in Rhetoric and Composition at Purdue University. Her research specializes in public rhetorics, theory and cultural studies, histories of rhetoric, as well as Middle Eastern rhetorics. Most recently, she has presented on a panel at the 2015 ISHR conference to discuss her recovery project on the Medieval Middle Eastern translation movement. Aside from her research on non-western rhetorics, Erin has served as the Vice President of GradSEA at Purdue and is currently serving as the Secretary/Treasurer of the RSA chapter at Purdue University. As a potential student member of the RSA Board, she hopes to represent the interests of fellow graduate students and to promote more professionalization opportunities for the graduate student community.Back to Top

Erica Fischer is a PhD candidate in Rhetoric and Composition in the Department of English at the University of South Carolina. Her research interests focus on composition pedagogy, rhetorical theory, and modernist and avant-garde experimentation. She is particularly interested in pedagogies that encourage students to think about writing in ways that disrupt authors and readers as static sites of meaning. Erica’s dissertation asserts that a rereading of previously overlooked approaches to modernism in Rhetoric and Composition can successfully respond to pedagogical questions that arose after the death of the author challenged assumptions about the writing subject. She offers conceptualism, as one example, and introduces a contemporary version of the progymnasmata informed by the methods of conceptual writers. Erica suggests that conceptual writing asks students to become sensitive to the multiple and fluid relationships involved in the rhetorical situation and to think differently about their own writing habits.Back to Top

(2) Communication: Matthew Houdek (University of Iowa) & Katie Irwin (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)

Matthew Houdek is a second year PhD student in the Communication Studies Department at the University of Iowa (UI). His work revolves around rhetorics of social change, public memory, social movements, and cultural/critical studies. As a graduate student at Syracuse University he served as co-chair of the local RSA Chapter, a chapter that uniquely bridges both Communication and Composition departments. During that time, he also worked as assistant to the RSA President-elect in his capacity as the 2014 biennial conference coordinator and organizer. His primary responsibilities included brainstorming and developing programming that "crossed borders" between Comm and Comp scholars. He is currently the co-chair of the new RSA Chapter at UI, the Bruce Gronbeck Rhetoric Society, which he also co-founded in 2014. As a dedicated and active RSA member, he looks forward to the possibility of building on his experience with the organization and contributing to its continued success.Back to Top

Katie Irwin studies early twentieth century U.S. rural and agrarian rhetorics. She is interested in how the agrarian myth influenced policymakers and local farming communities during the nation's transition to an industrial economy prior to World War I and during the agricultural depression of the 1920s. Her dissertation examines rural women's discourses during the 1920s and seeks to understand how rural women across the U.S. rhetorically redefined notions of "rural" and "rural womanhood" through their contributions to periodicals, conferences, and women's clubs. Irwin's dissertation in particular, and her broader research interests in general, cohere around issues of gender, race, rhetorical history, feminist rhetoric, U.S. public address, and rhetorical agency.Back to Top

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