College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

CLAS Dean's Office Staff Bios


Frederick J. Antczak

Frederick J. Antczak, PhD

Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences

Dean Antczak grew up on the west side of Grand Rapids, and graduated from West Catholic high school in the class of 1970. He took his B.A. from the University of Notre Dame in 1974, and his M.A. (1976) and Ph.D. (1979) from the Committee on the Analysis of Ideas and the Study of Methods at the University of Chicago, working with Wayne Booth and Robert Streeter. He taught in the Rhetoric Department at the University of California-Berkeley, the Department of Rhetoric and Communication Studies at the University of Virginia, and for seventeen years in the Rhetoric Department at the University of Iowa. In his first year at Grand Valley in 2004, he began his second quarter-century as a teacher-scholar.

During his time at the University of Virginia, Dean Antczak won the University's Thomas Jefferson teaching award "for best embodying the educational ideals of Thomas Jefferson."  At the University of Iowa he won the Outstanding Teaching Award in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences in 1997, and the Conference on College Composition and Communication's Citation for Outstanding Classroom Practice in 1998. He was the 2002 recipient of the Iowa Communication Association Citation for Lifetime Contributions to the secondary and postsecondary teaching of communication in Iowa.

Dean Antczak's first book, Thought and Character: the Rhetoric of Democratic Education, won a Phi Beta Kappa Book Award. He edited Rhetoric and Pluralism: Legacies of Wayne Booth, and with Cinda Coggins and Geoffrey Klinger co-edited Professing Rhetoric: Proceedings of the 2000 RSA Conference.   In 1998-99 he was chosen by the University of Iowa as a CIC Academic Leadership Fellow. In 2004, he was named as one of the first five Fellows of the Rhetoric Society of America, for outstanding accomplishments in teaching, research and service. He is the author of a variety of articles and reviews. At the University of Iowa he served for six years as a department chair, and six years as associate dean for academic programs; he has served the discipline in a variety of ways including as President of the Rhetoric Society of America in 2000 and 2001. He was named National Endowment of the Humanities Professor in the NEH seminar for college teachers on the American Lyceum in spring 2007.

Dean Antczak has served as an expert commentator on political rhetoric for MS-NBC, the Washington Post, FOX News, the Atlanta Constitution, Reuters International, Newsday, PBS News Hour with Jim Lehrer, the Boston Herald, and NPR's All Things Considered.

In his off hours, Fred is an ardent student of baseball, and golfers at the Meadows and contiguous roads and properties already know him to be remarkably long and even more remarkably inaccurate with pretty much every club, including the putter (he claims an 18 handicap, which seems to us characteristically optimistic). His wife Deborah Hughes is an attorney.

Gary Stark

Gary D. Stark, PhD

Associate Dean of Faculty

Gary is a specialist in German and European history who received his Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins University. He has taught in Canada and at the University of Texas in Arlington (1975-1994), where he also served as associate dean of Liberal Arts. Gary served as Dean of Arts & Letters at the University of Central Arkansas (1994-98) and Dean of Arts & Humanities at Grand Valley State University (1998-2001).

Author or editor of several books and articles on European history, his most recent book, Banned in Berlin: Literary Censorship in Imperial Germany, 1871-1918 (New York & Oxford: Berghahn Books, 2009) focuses on the censorship of art and literature in 19th and 20th century Germany. A paperback edition was issued in 2012. His current interest is in historical memory, monuments, and museums in Germany and Poland. Gary has led study abroad programs to Germany and Poland and serves on the board of directors of the Grandville Avenue Arts and Humanities association.


 Mary Schutten

Mary Schutten, PED

Associate Dean of Students and Curriculum

Dr. Schutten graduated from Calvin College with a B. A. in education with majors in physical education and mathematics, and a minor in German. While teaching at a Los Angeles area high school, Dr. Schutten received her M.A. in Exercise Physiology from California State University at Long Beach. She received her P.E.D. in motor control with emphases in health education and statistics, from Indiana University. She has been a faculty member at Grand Valley since 2002.

Dr. Schutten is a professor in the Department of Movement Science at Grand Valley State University. She has served on the CLAS curriculum committee from its inception, serving as its chairperson for three semesters. She is involved in various service activities both at Grand Valley and in the community. Most recently, Dr. Schutten and her school health education students have partnered with the Ottawa County Department of Health to serve as peer educators in the county’s high schools. She was presented with the College/University Health Education Specialist Award by the American Association for Health Education in 2011.  Dr. Schutten was the 2008 recipient of the University award for outstanding academic advising and, in that same year, received the service award for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Dr. Schutten is a 2011 graduate  of the HERS Denver Summer Institute (Higher Education Resource Services).  Offering HERS Institutes annually since 1976, Higher Education Resource Services (HERS) is the premier residential professional development program dedicated to advancing women leaders in higher education administration.

Encouraging undergraduate students to engage in scholarly pursuits has been a consistent theme in state level activities where Dr. Schutten collaborates with students to present workshops to other professionals. She has developed many health-related projects related to readability of health related websites; peer health education programming; the link of fitness levels and body mass index to academic and socioeconomic factors in K-12 students; investigations involving exergaming and their impact on physical activity and fitness using the Wii; and effectiveness academic advising programs for students within a department. She serves as a consultant and program reviewer for area high schools, universities and the Michigan Department of Education.


Shaily Menon

Shaily Menon, PhD

Associate Dean for Professional Development and Administration

Shaily has undergraduate degrees from Bombay University and graduate degrees from University of South Carolina and The Ohio State University. She was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Massachusetts at Boston from 1994-1997 and joined Grand Valley State University in 1998.

She is a professor in the Department of Biology and Natural Resources Management and was chair of the department from 2003 to 2009. She has been the recipient of the Outstanding Service Award, Barbara Jordan Award for Contributions to Women’s Scholarship and Leadership, and the Glenn A. Niemeyer Outstanding Faculty Award.

Shaily has worked on collaborative and interdisciplinary research projects with students and faculty at GVSU and at several institutions in the U.S. and the tropics, particularly India and Brazil. Her teaching and research have been in the areas of environmental science, environmental ethics, conservation biology, modeling dynamic systems, and spatial modeling to study the effects of land, sea, and climate change.

She enjoys traveling, reading, writing, and learning languages.

Pat Haynes

Pat Haynes

Assistant Dean of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Pat received her Masters degree in Sociology in 1971 from Illinois State University. At ISU she taught sociology courses and later served as the Assistant Dean of Undergraduate Instruction. She joined Grand Valley State University in the summer of 1979 and from 1981 through May 2004 she served as the Administrative Assistant for the Division of Science and Mathematics. 

Pat is completing her 31th year of service in a job that has changed in many ways over the years. In May 2004 she was promoted to the position of Assistant Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. The majority of her time is spent monitoring the College's budgets and working with departments concerning accounting or budget issues.   In addition she works with College faculty and the Grants Development office on the production and evaluation of grant proposals and grant budgets. She works with the University's grant accountant to assure that activities of university personnel are consistent with approved budgets and culminate in products as approved by granting agencies. 

Pat's hobbies include reading mystery and history based novels, machine knitting, and never-ending attempts to civilize her twin Pembroke Welsh Corgis, Spud and Molly!

Ed Aboufadel

Ed Aboufadel, PhD

Interim Assistant Dean

Ed is a mathematician who earned his bachelor's degree from Michigan State University and his Ph.D. from Rutgers University.  After three years on the faculty at Southern Connecticut State University, he joined Grand Valley State University in 1995.

He is a professor in the Department of Mathematics, serving as chair from 2007 to 2013. He has received the university's Outstanding Teaching Award and the Glenn A. Niemeyer Outstanding Faculty Award.  Ed also served as chair of the CLAS Faculty Council from 2005 to 2007, and was the founder of the university's International Faculty and Friends program.  Ed is currently the interim chair of GVSU's Department of Biomedical Sciences.

Ed's scholarship has focused on the application of wavelets to a variety of situations.  Most of his projects have included undergraduates at GVSU's Research Experience for Undergraduates in Mathematics program.  Ed was the Principal Investigator of this NSF-funded program from 2005 to 2010.  In 2012, he and his students were awarded a prize from InnoCentive for their wavelet-based solution to the problem of detecting potholes using a smartphone.

In the community, Ed is the "Research Information Volunteer" for the local board of JDRF, and he has maintained his "Gas Game" blog since 2002, making short-term predictions of gas prices in the Midwest.

Monica Johnstone, PhD

Director of CLAS Communications & Advancement

With a background spanning academe, development and industry, Monica brings a broad perspective to the college’s communications, both internal and external. Her mission is to produce expanded offerings on the website, targeted publications, and improvements to communications with students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends of CLAS.

Monica was the recipient of the Levi Strauss Scholarship and the Charles Mills Gayle Fellowship and worked for the UC Berkeley Foundation during a major capital campaign.

After receiving her PhD in Rhetoric from the University of California at Berkeley in 1987, Monica taught writing and public speaking at Loyola College in Baltimore and at Assumption University in Bangkok, Thailand. Monica is the author of several publications including refereed articles, travel writing, short fiction, OpEd pieces, annual reports and book reviews. She has given speeches on four continents.

From 1995-2006, she worked for a national industry association as speechwriter, editor-in-chief, webmaster, events planner, and systems administrator. She also served for three years on an elected board for a 1,000-member arts guild.

One of her textile works is currently in a juried international exhibition called Beneath the Southern Sky which will visit 13 or more cities in 5 countries.

Monica is an Inclusion Advocate, volunteers as communications liaison and a trainer  for Allies & Advocates, and was the recipient of the GVSU 2010 Administrative Professional Commitment to Diversity Award.  At GVSU, she  has taught ENG 340 Studies in Drama, WRT 350 Business Communication, COM 202 Critical Interpretation, and  COM 201 Speech.

 Cindy Laug

 Cindy Laug

Administrative Assistant for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Cindy has worked at Grand Valley State University since 1995.  Before coming to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean's Office, Cindy worked in the Records Department, Sociology Department, and the Science and Math Dean's Office. Before coming to Grand Valley, Cindy worked in the corporate retail business for 21 years.  She traveled to Kingston University under the Faculty/staff study abroad program in 2006.

As Administrative Assistant for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, Cindy is responsible for the college academic  course scheduling process; creation of contracts and appointment letters, coordinates the faculty/AP salary process, oversees the CLAS office operation; coordinates employment search processes, and tracks expenditures related to salary and wages for projection purposes.

Cindy is married and has three sons, two grandchildren, and Oscar, her cat.  She enjoys reading, doing historical research, and biking.


Tracy McLenithan



Tracy McLenithan 

Dean's Office Assistant for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Tracy has worked at Grand Valley State University since 1998. Before coming to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Dean's Office, Tracy worked in the Health Professions Office for a year, and then moved to the Psychology Department where she worked for 13 years.

Serving as Dean’s Office Assistant, her responsibilities include supporting Dean Antczak and Assistant Dean Haynes; serving as CLAS record keeper; and coordinating Unit Head evaluations, contracts, meetings, and Unit Head & Faculty Weekly Mailings.  Tracy also coordinates CLAS faculty awards (Pew teaching, technology, etc.), assists with faculty salary process, handles Travel & Expense Forms and assists with class scheduling.

Tracy received her B.S. in Business Administration from Ferris State University.  She is married and has two sons in college and a Golden Retriever named Maggie. She enjoys reading, golfing, yoga and traveling. 

 Rox Mol

 Roxanne Mol

Office Coordinator

Roxanne has been with the university since 2001. She came to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences from the Department of Movement Science where she served as the secretary of the department. Prior to Movement Science, Roxanne spent six years as an Admissions secretary.

Her duties include providing support for Dr. Mary Schutten , Associate Dean of the College. Among other things, she will oversee the grading process and provide clerical support for the Curriculum Committee.

Roxanne earned her B.S.  in Liberal Studies from Grand Valley and is currently working on her Masters in Higher Education.  Roxanne and her husband Vern enjoy spending their spare time with their children and grandson. They enjoy boating, hunting and supporting our own Grand Valley Lakers together.

Courtney Sherwood


Courtney has been with Grand Valley since 2002. Prior to joining the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences Deans Office, she began working with the university in the registrar's office as a records auditor. She then worked for MAREC in Muskegon as Administrative Coordinator for the center.

Courtney received her BA in Writing from Norwich University of Vermont College in Montpelier, Vermont. Her interests include reading, writing, and her ever-growing collection of books. She spends her free time traveling and hiking with her husband and their two daughters.

Keesha Hardiman

Keesha Hardiman 

Office Coordinator for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Keesha Hardiman has been an employee of Grand Valley State University since December of 2003. Prior to joining the CLAS Dean's Office in 2006, she worked in the banking industry and served as Faculty Services Secretary for the GVSU Psychology Department. From May of 2010 until May of 2012, Keesha concurrently served as Office Coordinator of Grand Valley’s Autism Education Center.

As Office Coordinator of the CLAS Dean’s Office, Keesha has taken on a number of responsibilities. Currently, her major responsibilities include planning College-wide events and supporting Associate Dean Shaily Menon as she carries out her responsibilities in the areas of Faculty and Staff Development, Research/Grants, Space/Facilities, and Strategic Planning.

Keesha obtained a B.A. in Economics from the University of Michigan in 2001 and a Master's degree in Public Administration from Grand Valley State University in 2009. During her spare time, she enjoys reading, drawing, spending time with her family, and, occasionally, building architectural models.

Heidi Nicholson

Heidi Nicholson 

Database Coordinator for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences

Heidi began her work at GVSU in 2004 in the Movement Science Department. Previously, she worked for 5 years at Dow Chemical in the computer security department.

Her position as Database Coordinator for the College includes maintenance of the college database, creation of contract letters, and assisting with the development of the annual schedule of courses.

Heidi grew up in Bay City, Michigan and moved to Jenison in August 2003. She is happily married with two children.

In her spare time, Heidi enjoys playing volleyball, doing puzzles, scrapbooking and reading Stephen King books. When she gets the chance, she also enjoys camping with her family.

Aaron Perry

Aaron Perry

Director of Lab Support

Aaron joined Grand Valley in the summer of 2002. Before coming to Grand Valley Aaron earned his undergraduate degree from Central Michigan University and spent two years in Muskegon working at a Federal Superfund Site performing Quality Control and Assurance. In 2002 Aaron came to GVSU as lab supervisor for the chemistry department the in 2008 joined the Deans Office as the director of Laboratory support.

When Aaron is not here at GVSU he spends most of his free time helping his wife protect their 2 young sons from themselves, with free minutes devoted to family, cycling, golfing, and carpentry.

Jim Seufert

Jim Seufert 

Lab Safety Specialist

Jim Seufert joined Grand Valley in 2009 to coordinate safety and environmental programs for the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.  Prior to his work with the University Jim worked 10 years managing regulatory affairs for Universal Forest Products, Inc. and he spent 4 years enforcing environmental health and sanitation regulations for Kent County and Hamilton County (IN) Health Departments. 

Jim’s work at Grand Valley focuses primarily on addressing safety and health hazards in academic and research activities.  In addition, he provides training and support for faculty, staff and students to work safely in the labs, shops and studios of the College.  He is the University’s Chemical Hygiene Officer and Radiation Safety Officer, supports numerous committees within the university, and works to ensure compliance with the various health, safety, and environmental regulations affecting the University’s research and academic activity.  

Jim is originally from Indianapolis and received his BS in Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences from Purdue University.  He is a Registered Environmental Health Specialist and actively participates in various industry associations.

In his free time Jim enjoys spending time with his wife and 3 very active boys.  On rare occasions he might have time to enjoy his other interests such as golf, cycling, and skiing.



Page last modified April 2, 2014