I was born and raised in the Detroit area and still love the Motor City and my Detroit Tigers. Much of my family is there, including my mother, who remains an inspiration well into her 90s. I am second-generation Polish, and I was a first-generation college student. I can’t say enough about how my experiences as a debate and forensics competitor for Wayne State University were personally and academically transformative.
After completing my M.S. at Illinois State, then my doctoral degree at the University of Iowa, I relocated to my beloved adopted home of Austin, Texas in 1987 to join the Communication Studies faculty at Texas State University. My great passion is the study of rhetoric and public address, particularly protest movements, popular media, images of women, and the rhetorical uses of history.
I love to travel internationally and explore new places. I have been so very honored to receive two Fulbright Scholar Awards, including one in Spring 2019 in India at the M.O.P. Vaishnav College for Women in Chennai. Previously, my 2011 Fulbright placement was in Poland at the Warsaw School of Social Sciences and Humanities. I also have served as a visiting professor at Moscow State University and the University of Amsterdam.
I share my home in Austin with a wonderful elder cat named Douglass. Whenever I can, I’m out running and biking on the trail by Ladybird Lake downtown, listening to live music, and enjoying the local theatre events. I’m recently widowed, and have three stepchildren, two nephews, three granddaughters, two grandnieces, and two grandnephews.