Faculty & Staff


Roberta T. Herrin, Ph.D.
Director, Center for Appalachian Studies and Services
Professor, Department of Appalachian Studies
Telephone:   (423) 439-7997

Co-Director and Executive Aide

Ruth Hausman
Telephone:   (423) 439-7865




Melanie Storie
Department of History 

Telephone:  (423) 439-4222


Melanie Storie is a two-time graduate from East Tennessee State University. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in history with certification in secondary education in 1991. Then in 1994 she graduated with a Master of Arts degree in history. She developed some of the first online U.S. History courses for the department and continues to teach both online and face-to-face classes. While she enjoys researching, writing, and teaching about many historical topics, her main research interest centers on 19th century U.S. History with special emphasis on the American Civil War. 



Nate Olson
Assistant Professor
Bluegrass, Old Time, and Country Music Studies
E-Mail:  olsonn@etsu.edu
Telephone:  (423) 439-7476





Nate Olson is a musician, educator, author, and fiddler who hails from the Western US.  He holds a doctorate in music education from Columbia University, and his dissertation examines fiddle and folk music in higher education.  Before beginning his doctorate, he was the assistant director of the Folk Music Program at Brigham Young University teaching fiddle, as well as Bluegrass, Irish, Klezmer , and various other ensembles.  His students performed extensively in the South Pacific, Asia, Europe, and the Americas. 



Michael Stoots
Assistant Professor
College of Public Health
E-Mail:  stootsj@etsu.edu
Telephone (423) 439-4456



Doctor of Education, Health Education, University of Tennessee. Major: Health Education, collateral studies Exercise Science. (May 2001)

Master of Public Health, East Tennessee State University.  Concentration: Industrial Health Education. (May 1990)

Bachelor of Science, East Tennessee State University.  Majors: Physical Education and Psychology. Minor: Health Education. Met class requirements for K-12 teaching certification. (May 1987)









Deborah Montanti
Heritage Alliance of NE Tennessee and SW Virginia
E-Mail:  dmontanti@heritageall.org
Telephone:  (423) 743-9580


Deborah Montanti has over 19 years of experience in not for profit, cultural heritage organizations.  In 2006 she was named Executive Director of the Heritage Alliance of Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. Headquartered in Jonesborough TN, the Heritage Alliance is dedicated to the preservation of the region’s historical and cultural resources through assistance, advice and advocacy, the operation of two museums in Jonesborough, as well as public programming and professional development opportunities to our region’s teachers.

Deborah lives outside of Jonesborough where she and her husband are steadfastly reforesting part of an old dairy farm.



Shawn Haugrud
Natural History Museum
E-Mail:  haugrud@etsu.edu 
Telephone:  (423) 439-3661


As Preparator at Gray Fossil Site he manages the Prep Lab and a large team of dedicated volunteers. In addition to training volunteers and arranging their projects, he prepares the more difficult or higher priority specimens. Shawn also works on making molds and casts for research or exhibition. Aside from his work indoors he occasionally leads a team of volunteers working outside in the fossil excavation pits. As of this upcoming January Shawn will have worked at the Gray Site for 10 years.



Laura Smith
Education & Outreach Archivist
Archives of Appalachia
Telephone: 423-439-6990



Laura Smith is the Education & Outreach Archivist at ETSU's Archives of Appalachia. Laura received a B.A. in United States History and a B.A. in Film Studies from The Ohio State University in 2010. She completed her M.L.S. degree with a specialization in Archives and Records Management and her M.A. degree in History from Indiana University in 2011. Her professional interests include archival education, community outreach, and collection management. She is the Governor's School instructor for fieldwork in the Archives.




Spenser Brenner
Appalachia CARES/ AmeriCORPS
Reece Museum
Website:   www.spenserbrenner.weebly.com  
Telephone:  423-439-4392


Spenser Brenner is a Service-Learning Facilitator for AmeriCORPS and works as the Education Coordinator for the Reece Museum on the Campus of ETSU. He earned his Associate's Degree in general education from Southwest Virginia Community College in 2010 and his Bachelors of Fine Arts from East Tennessee State University in May of 2013. Spenser also works as an artist out of various studios and as a graphic designer for local musicians.





Jacy Weems is a returning residential counselor and alumni of the GSSETH program. She will be graduating in May 2015 with her Bachelor of Science in Public Health and a minor in philosophy. She wishes to continue her education through the doctoral level in pursuit of a career in Health Policy. Jacy is the Undergraduate President of the Public Health Student Association, and has made partnerships with local organizations and created outreach programs in local schools to improve overall health in East TN. She has worked extensively at the Valleybrook campus on the Project EARTH program and is interning in Nashville during the spring of 2014. In her spare time, she loves going to music festivals, traveling, and spending time with family and friends.  




Julia Yancey is a returning counselor for the Governor’s School for the Scientific Exploration of Tennessee Heritage.  She was herself a GSSETH student in 2011.  She is a senior at ETSU majoring in English with a minor in Theater.  As of now she is interested in pursuing a career in writing as well as working in a theater costume shop.  She hopes to begin learning special effects makeup and wants to be a contestant on the show Face Off.  Some of her hobbies include sculpting and sketching new creatures for her book series.  Her plans for the upcoming year are to begin the writing and production of a play for her Honors Thesis.

Julia is the president of the Carter-Stone-Powell Hall council and the Public Relations Chair and Historian for Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity.  She is looking forward to this year and completing the goals she has set for herself. 




Phillip Peters, from Greeneville, Tennessee, is a returning GSSETH residential counselor. He is currently a senior at ETSU seeking dual degrees in Public Health and Foreign Languages (Spanish). Presently, he is serving as Vice President for the Public Health Student Association on campus, and for the past year he has worked as the student coordinator for the Public Health Student Association's CPR program. In his spare time he enjoys hiking, cooking, and volunteering for the American Red Cross and the Johnson City Community Health Center. His goal is to attend graduate school and work in global health.




Taylor Reed, from White Pine, Tennessee is a new counselor for the Governor’s School for the Scientific Exploration of Tennessee Heritage. She is currently a sophomore at ETSU majoring in Physical Education with a concentration in Exercise Science. At this time, she is the Fundraising Chair for Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity and is involved with the Exercise and Sports Sciences Club. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, playing video games, hiking, and playing sports. Taylor plans to pursue a career as a physical therapist.



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