2016 Election for 3 CWPA Executive Board Members

In July 2016, the CWPA Executive Board will say goodbye to members Nicholas Behm (Elmhurst College), Peter Gray (Queensborough CC, CUNY), and Amy Kimme Hea (University of Arizona), with our appreciation for their service.

Based on nominations from the membership, the Nominating Committee has prepared a slate of 6 candidates for these open slots. Brief biographical information and statements by each of the candidates are below.

As you consider your votes, recall that the Executive Board:

  • oversees the CWPA, its events, and its activities;
  • forms policies and procedures for its management; and
  • engages in special projects and initiatives.

The new Board members will serve for three years, with terms beginning in July 2016.

Voting tokens for the 2016 CWPA election will be distributed electronically to current CWPA members in early February. Only current members are eligible to vote. Voting will take place for two weeks, and results will be announced shortly after voting closes.

We hope you will take the time review the materials below in advance of the voting period.


Executive Board Member #1: 
Scott Warnock or Peter Khost


Scott WarnockScott Warnock is an associate professor of English and Director of the University Writing Program at Drexel University. He teaches first-year writing and courses such as Writing in Cyberspace, The Literature of Business, and Writing and Peer Tutoring Workshop. In his administrative and other service and committee roles, which also included four years directing Drexel’s First-Year Writing Program, he has worked with colleagues to develop digital methods of teaching, collaboration, faculty training, tutoring, and assessment. Scott is the author of Teaching Writing Online: How and Why and numerous chapters and journal articles about online learning, computers and writing, and education technology. He serves as an editorial reviewer for numerous publishers and journals. He has facilitated workshops, both onsite and online, about teaching and technology at national conferences and for many institutions. Since 2011, Scott has served as co-chair of the Conference on College Composition and Communication Committee for Effective Practices in Online Writing Instruction. He has maintained Online Writing Teacher, a blog about teaching writing online, since 2005.

Statement: I’m excited to have the opportunity to run for the Executive Board. I believe in the mission – at all levels: local, regional, and national – of the CWPA, and I hope that my focus on online writing instruction (OWI) as well as my WPA and professional service experiences at these different levels make me a good candidate to serve the CWPA in supporting those who direct writing programs.

Locally, I have been a WPA for more than a decade, serving in various roles at three institutions. In my current position as director of Drexel’s University Writing Program, I have been involved with challenges that characterize the work of many WPAs: clarifying the identity and role of our UWP, figuring out how to “assess” and evaluate what we do, staffing our writing initiatives and projects, and working with (and around) budgets and funding. WPA work – and I think this is the appeal of it for so many of us – is based in these front-and-center activities, and I think my particular efforts in this way teaching and administering online/hybrid courses will be valuable to the CWPA.

Regionally, I served as the co-chair of the active, large, and highly collegial Philadelphia Writing Program Administrators. I was in that role when PWPA hosted the CWPA conference in Philly in 2010. Since I have been at Drexel, our campus has hosted a bi-annual PWPA meeting and also a quarterly breakfast event for writing center directors. As I think many in the Philly area would also attest, I find our PWPA meetings an invaluable re-charge opportunity. Inspired by these interactions, as a member of the Board, I would seek ways to help other WPAs develop or expand these regional WPA organizations.

Nationally, my research and on-campus experiences as a guest at dozens of institutions have shown me that WPAs across the country are trying to figure out how online learning and writing instruction go together. In addition to my specific interest in OWI pedagogy, I believe that my background working with a broad range of faculty provide a foundation for me to be a good CWPA emissary. I have participated in several national service roles. Since 2011, I have served as co-chair of the CCCC Committee for Principals and Effective Practices in OWI. In that role, I was a lead co-author of A Position Statement of OWI Principles and Example Effective Practices for Online Writing Instruction in 2013. I am also a member of NCTE Editorial Board and the WPA Journal Editorial Board. I hope that the perspective provided by these roles and the high-level service-scholarship writing involved with the position statement will allow me to be a hands-on contributor right away on the Executive Board.

Crossing all of these areas is my work as a writer. In addition to scholarship, I have engaged in activist writing about education, and I hope that my increased ethos, if you will, as an Executive Board member would help me continue to convince and inform others, from readers of my local newspapers to members of Drexel’s community, about the value of WPA work.

Peter KhostPeter Khost (pronounced “coast”) is an Assistant Professor in the independent Program in Writing and Rhetoric at Stony Brook University, where he has served as Associate Director, Assessment Coordinator, and Director of the Writing Center. He coedited and contributed to Collaborating(,) Literature(,) and Composition: Essays for Teachers and Writers of English (Hampton Press), and has published recent articles in Composition Forum, Pedagogy, and the Journal of Educational Technology Systems. Peter also has essays forthcoming in The Journal of the Assembly for Expanded Perspectives on Learning and in three edited collections. He is currently the founding chair of the CWPA Task Force for Publicizing the Framework for Success in Postsecondary Writing (Framework), and founding editor of the running column in NCTE’s English Journal, “Reframing Readiness,” which generates scholarly discourse about the Framework between secondary and postsecondary writing instructors. Peter is the recipient of a 2015 CCCC Research Initiative Grant and of a 2014 CWPA Research Grant for studying the Framework’s “habits of mind” in dozens of 4-year university, 2-year college, and secondary school writing classrooms. He has coordinated sponsorships and exhibitions for the past three CWPA national conferences, and will do the same for this year’s conference in Raleigh. Peter has served as Chair of the CWPA Recognitions and Awards Committee (2011-2013), reviewer for WPA: Writing Program Administration (2014-15), and founding Treasurer of the CWPA Metropolitan Affiliate (2011-present). He has won three recent competitive SUNY grants: to create and research an online tool for aiding writing transfer, to study cross-disciplinary transfer from the writing minor program he created at Stony Brook, and to participate in the Dartmouth Summer Seminar for Composition Research.

Statement: I am proud of my strong and well-documented commitment to supporting the Council of Writing Program Administrators. Having actively served the CWPA with increasing responsibility for the past six years and having established a record of various leadership positions in the field, I feel I am well qualified to serve on the Executive Board. I also possess a unique perspective on our discipline for having been a contingent lecturer for twelve years before taking a tenuretrack position a few years ago. I campaigned successfully for increased pay, voting rights, and promotion opportunities for contingent faculty at my own institution, and I intend to expand these efforts at the national level.

I believe in taking action to advance my values, collaborating for the common good, and leading by example. For instance, I have personally raised over $20,000 for the CWPA as Sponsorship and Exhibits Coordinator for the national conferences in Boise and Normal, and Co-coordinator for Savannah. This includes travel and research grants for graduate students in WPA-GO. I have dedicated literally hundreds of hours to this arduous work and to the CWPA Task Force that I founded, whose membership has initiated forthcoming publications about the Framework for Success in an edited collection, a running column in English Journal, and a crowdsourced blog. My grant-funded research projects on the Framework are yielding some of our field’s first valid and reliable findings on the Framework’s habits of mind, and I have awarded thousands of dollars in stipends to dozens of facilitating postsecondary and secondary writing teachers at my eighteen study sites around the country. I have presented this research at the CWPA, NCTE, and CCCC conferences, as well as at a WPA regional affiliate event and at the MLA convention on a panel sponsored by the CWPA. Several related articles are in the works.

Election to the Executive Board would only increase my proven strong dedication to the CWPA, and enable me to more effectively apply the assets of my unique knowledge and experience to several important areas. These include: 1) various problems confronting contingent writing faculty; 2) relations between postsecondary and secondary writing educators regarding assessment, pedagogy, and solidarity in the face of daunting external challenges; and 3) fundraising efforts to support these and other vital causes. Thanks for your consideration.


Executive Board Member #2: 
Casie Fedukovich or Cristyn Elder


Casie FedukovichCasie Fedukovich is an Assistant Professor in English at North Carolina State University, where she also serves as the Associate Director of the First-Year Writing Program. During her time as Associate Director, she has mentored over 100 graduate teaching assistants; taught both the composition seminar and teaching practicum; revised the program’s teaching preparation process; initiated and led the program’s annual National Day on Writing celebration; and served her program by supporting initiatives like program assessment, placement process revisions, and curricular changes. She currently chairs the WPA Task Force for Non- and Un-tenured WPAs, serves on the WPA Labor Committee, and is a member of the editorial board for WPA: Writing Program Administration. Fedukovich’s research interests include exploring the intersections of writing program administration and body politics, academic labor practices, teaching assistant preparation, and philosophies of class-based pedagogies. Her work has appeared in WPA: Writing Program Administration and Workplace: A Journal for Academic Labor. She has work forthcoming in FORUM: Issues about Part-Time and Contingent Faculty, Composition Forum, and Composition Studies. Her current research study explores perceptions of threat experienced by graduate student teaching assistants.

Statement: I have been a member of WPA for almost ten years, since my first year as a doctoral student. In that time, I’ve been struck by how WPA, despite membership growth, continues to keep its members’ needs at the core of its professional activities. It would be my privilege to serve on the Executive Board, and my experience in non-profit work as influenced by my scholarly activity prepares me to contribute with compassion and focus.

Before I was a WPA, I was a volunteer. A commitment to service is the guiding principle for my professional life. I have worked with massive NGOs, including Amnesty International and the Peace Corps, and with small, local soup kitchens. A desire to serve brought me to teaching—I began my teaching career in an academic emergency high school—and it led me to writing program administration, where I felt I could effect positive change for the greatest number of people.

This same desire drives my interest in serving on the Executive Board. If elected, I will continue WPA’s commitment to meeting members’ needs. I helped co-author the Indy Resolution, and it would be my commitment to continue this important work in context of the organization’s statement, “Evaluating the Intellectual Work of WPAs.” WPA positions continue to present new demands in response to national trends in hiring, and we must revisit the Intellectual Work statement in light of these developments. Secondly, I feel that we must be dedicated to inviting others into our conversations, especially our K12 colleagues, whether through extension work or by expanding our publications and scholarship. Many of us already build these bridges, and those relationships must continue to be highlighted in our disciplinary media, in addition to innovative forums that may extend our reach. Through increased visibility and an invitational approach, I am optimistic that we can continue to build a strong, diverse collective of teacher-scholars. 

Cristyn ElderCristyn Elder is an Assistant Professor at the University of New Mexico, where she teaches the TA practicum and courses in composition and rhetoric. In her first two years as an Assistant WPA, she co-created with her colleague Dr. Beth Davila a new Stretch/Studio Program, eliminating “remedial” composition at UNM while increasing student support and pass rates that exceed UNM’s traditional composition courses. In 2015, she received UNM’s Lobo Louie Award for Outstanding Student Service Provider for faculty. Cris is a co-founder of WPA-GO (the WPA Graduate Student Organization), serving as Co-Chair from 2009-2012. She has also served on the WPA Conference Program Committee (2012), the CWPA Task Force for Diversity (2012-2015) (now known as the Diversity Committee), and the CWPA Graduate Research Awards Committee (2013 to present). Additionally, she is a co-founder and an editor of Present Tense: A Journal of Rhetoric in Society. Cris’s current research focuses on supporting underrepresented undergraduate and graduate student populations in composition studies and across the disciplines. She has reviewed for and published in WPA: Writing Program Administration and has articles forthcoming in Across the Disciplines and Composition Studies. She is also co-editing with Dr. Davila the collection Defining, Locating, and Addressing Bullying in the WPA Workplace. At every opportunity, Cris seeks to combine her professional interests with her love of traveling, leading her to teach English language courses in Mexico and teacher education courses as a Peace Corps Master’s Internationalist in Ukraine, as an English Language Fellow in Guatemala, and as an English Language Specialist in Tajikistan and Panama.

Statement: My first introduction to CWPA was in Denver in 2008 when I attended the WPA Conference as a graduate student. While my colleagues and I were there to present on the WPA Board Game we had created, we found that our primary target audience (other graduate students) were almost completely absent from the conference. This experience led me and fellow graduate students from across the U.S. to work with leaders within CWPA and on the Executive Board to establish WPA-GO. WPA-GO has been a great success, increasing the diversity of membership within the organization in a number of ways. Since that time, over the past seven years, I have continued working to make CWPA a more welcoming space through the various committees on which I’ve served, including the Diversity Task Force and the CWPA Graduate Research Awards Committee.

I am now running for election to the CWPA Executive Board because I want to continue to help grow the organization in similarly positive ways so that others might desire to call CWPA their professional home. In particular, I wish to strengthen CWPA’s relationship with the field of Second Language Writing and with Minority Serving Institutions. With my MA in TESOL and PhD in Rhetoric and Composition, my experience working abroad, and making UNM – a Hispanic-Serving Institution– my institutional home, I believe I’m particularly well suited to work with members within the organization and individuals not yet members to make this happen. In this way, we as an organization might give a stronger voice to the diverse and growing student demographic found in our classrooms and be even better prepared to serve them.


Executive Board Member #3:
Paula Patch or Stephanie Roach


Paula PatchPaula Patch is a Senior Lecturer in English at Elon University. Since 2011, Paula has served as Coordinator of the College Writing program, which includes the required first-year writing course, a developmental writing workshop, and a not-for-credit writing seminar for high school juniors. Prior to taking this permanent, full-time, non-tenure track position at Elon, Paula worked as a contingent faculty member teaching literature and composition at Central Penn College, Georgia Highlands College, and the University of West Georgia. Along with composition pedagogy, Paula is primarily interested in the material conditions of teaching writing, and her scholarship focuses on three areas: information literacy, student access, and contingency studies, particularly ensuring that faculty on non-tenure track lines are adequately and accurately represented in the discipline and the academy.

Paula is an active member of the Council of Writing Program Administrators, and has served on the Newcomers/Membership Committee, the Breakfast Committee, and the Task Force on Un-tenured/Non-tenured Writing Program Administrators. She has also served as an at-large representative for North Carolina for the Carolinas Writing Program Administrators. Her publications have appeared in TETYC and Composition Forum, and she presents regularly at CCCC, the WPA conference, the Watson Conference on Rhetoric and Composition, SAMLA, and other national and regional events. She also reviews manuscripts for TETYC.  

Statement: Part of my job at my university is to be an advocate for good working conditions for writing faculty, particularly contingent and non-tenure-track faculty who tend to have a heavy course load in first-year composition. I would use my position on the executive board primarily to represent and advocate for non-tenure track and untenured faculty and WPAS, particularly to ensure their inclusion in the Council and other critical organizations and conversations in the field. As a non-tenure track writing instructor and WPA, I have felt that the Council of Writing Administrators, more than other organizations in English and composition studies, is more inclusive and welcoming of faculty and WPAs whose paths to leadership and success may be unconventional or nontraditional, but not uncommon. As a member of the executive board, I would like to help extend that welcome and support to other underrepresented writing faculty and WPAs.

Stephanie RoachStephanie Roach is Associate Professor of English at the University of Michigan-Flint where she has been the Director of Writing Programs since 2003.  She was previously the Assistant Director of Freshman English at the University of Connecticut while completing her Ph.D. in English.  She is highly involved on campus including work with the Thompson Center for Learning and Teaching as a long standing Advisory Board member promoting teaching, learning, and faculty development, with the Student Success Center as one of this year’s faculty fellows studying failure rates and predictors of success in gateway courses, with the K-12 Partnerships Office developing and supporting the integrity of DEEP or Dual Enrollment Educational Partnership programs, with UM-Flint’s General Education Program as one of two authors of the ten campus-wide rubrics used for assessing general education learning outcomes, and, beyond campus, with the Greater Flint Educational Consortium Writing Committee as a presenter in high school classrooms on making the transition from high school to college.  Her publications include “Keep Your Head Down and Other Bad Advice for the Junior Faculty WPA” in The Promise and Peril of Writing Program Administration and “Assigning the Obituary: Using Figures from Popular Culture to Help Students Argue from Research” in Teaching in the Pop Culture Zone: Using Popular Culture in the Composition Classroom.  She has presented at the annual meetings and conventions of WPA, CCCC, NCTE, the International Center for Academic Integrity, and the Higher Learning Commission.  Her professional areas of interest include writing programs and pedagogy, plagiarism, general education, and issues of WPA identity.

Statement: Ken Bruffee argued “Writing program administrators are responsible for creating the context—in the widest possible sense—in which we all teach writing” [WPA: A Newsletter for Writing Program Administrators 1.3 (1978): 11].  This idea of what it means to be a WPA has guided my work and how I value not just WPA work that looks like mine but all the work that is the WPA.  The CWPA influences the larger context in which WPAs do the rich and varied work that benefits generations of students, faculty, staff, programs, campuses, and communities.  By considering the issues that face our membership, I wish to give back to an organization that has been the very foundation of my professional life.

For my dissertation project I read every issue of WPA: A Newsletter for Writing Program Administrators and the WPA: Writing Program Administration journal it became from 1997-2002.  In 2000, I attended my first WPA Summer Workshop and Conference.  The people I met and the pages of the scholarly record I read made it clear that WPAs are people who are vigilant, reflective, and kind.  As I continue to read the journal, attend WPA conferences, lurk on WPA-L, and meet up with other WPAs in Michigan through the MI-WPA, I am reminded that one of the great joys of joining the ranks of the CWPA is to be among those who by virtue of being a WPA think locally but not narrowly, programmatically but also departmentally and institutionally, academically but also civically.  I would like to serve among other WPAs who help the CWPA think organizationally.  

As a WPA for almost 20 years, I’ve encountered many of the perennial and newly emerging issues faced in the course of administering writing programs—curriculum development within first year writing, writing minors, writing majors, and graduate programs, changing student populations, faculty development at all ranks, program advocacy within the department and beyond, collaborations with writing centers and computer writing classrooms, enrollment management, scheduling, hiring, firing, layoffs, labor contracts, reviews of faculty performance, remediation plans for faculty, writing placement, assessment, integration with general education outcomes, enrollment crises, shrinking resources, serving on or attending almost every standing or ad hoc committee known to exist, grade disputes, plagiarism cases, unstable university leadership, justifying the existence of [fill in the blank], accreditation, program review, post requests, dual enrollment.  The preceding list names but a handful of the tasks and concerns that occupy my time.  I’m not sure a complete list for me as a WPA or for us collectively as WPAs is possible.  There is simply so much to be done.  Our work may be canny in similarity or wildly dissimilar, but it is all the work of the WPA.  One thing I know for sure is I don’t have all the answers.  But I can ask questions.  On my campus, I’m known famously (or perhaps infamously) for asking questions that come out of all the programmatic, departmental, institutional, academic and civic ways I think, analyze, and synthesize.  This penchant for questions that result from thinking things through contextually, considering implications, looking for down-the-road consequences, and taking into account the real people involved have sometimes been misunderstood as questions intended to block progress, but the truth is I ask those questions, as I always have, with a steadfast investment in moving forward and doing things well.  I would like the honor of asking good questions—vigilantly, reflectively, kindly—on behalf of the CWPA membership.  I wish to contribute to the way the organization supports and advances all of us in our work.