Faculty Listing


Use the directory below to search for contact information relevant to the Centre community. Should you not find the necessary information, please contact us using the main telephone number listed below.


The main telephone number for Centre College is 859.238.5200. Calls to this number will be routed to the appropriate extension. In an after-hours emergency, call 859.236.4357.

Mailing Address

Centre College
600 West Walnut Street
Danville, KY 40422



Brent White

Photo of  Brent  White
Matton Professor Emeritus of Psychology Emeritus Faculty Phone: 859.238.5329

Brent White is professor emeritus of psychology at Centre College, where he has held the Matton Professorship since 1996. A member of the Centre faculty since 1971, he has chaired the psychology program, the psychobiology program, and the division of sciences and mathematics.

White has particular expertise in physiological psychology and animal behavior, and he has developed a strong working relationship with the Louisville Zoo. The zoo has one of the world’s most successful captive populations of breeding woolly monkeys, and White has received several grants that have funded in-depth observation and research with the colony. He has contributed to the understanding of stress, reproduction, and longevity of these monkeys in captivity.

At the zoo’s request, White serves on its research committee and continues to pursue field studies among the animals there. On a national scale, White is president and a founding director of the Woolly Monkey Foundation that seeks to understand and protect woolly monkeys, which are classified as a vulnerable species.

On the Centre campus, White is a dedicated and thorough teacher. He took a leadership role in establishing a sophisticated electronic laboratory designed to accommodate a full class of students for integration of the classroom and laboratory experience in psychology. The electronic classroom is especially well equipped to promote collaborative scientific research between students and faculty in animal behavior and psychopharmacology.

White has published research in refereed journals including Science, Primates and Pharmacology, Biochemistry, & Behavior.

White holds a B.A. from the University of Utah and a Ph.D. from Princeton University.

File last updated: 7/8/13

Philip White

Photo of  Philip  White
Professor of English English Address Crounse Hall—445 Phone: 859.238.5262

Philip White joined the Centre College faculty in 1999. He is a professor of English, and was named a Centre Scholar in 2007. He had previously taught at Brigham Young University and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

White’s interests have focused on Shakespeare and poetry, including poetry translation. He has published critical and scholarly work in both fields. He has won a Pushcart Prize for poetry and a Willis Barnstone Prize for poetry translation. His book of poems, The Clearing, won the 2007 Walt Macdonald award. His poems have also appeared or are forthcoming in The New Republic, Slate, Poetry, The Yale Review, Ploughshares, Literary Imagination, Agni, New England Review, Southern Review, and elsewhere.

White holds B.A. and M.A. degrees from Brigham Young University and a Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

File last updated: 8/27/15


EXPERT: Shakespeare — Poetry

Scholarly articles published in Hellas, Twentieth Century Literature and Tudor England: An Encyclopedia. Poetry published in Antioch Review, New England Review, and elsewhere.

Roberta White

Photo of  Roberta  White
Professor Emerita of English Emeritus Faculty Phone: 859.238.5268

Roberta White is professor emerita of English at Centre College. She began teaching at the College in 1967.

White regularly teaches courses on modern British literature, Irish literature, Virginia Woolf, Milton, and 17th-century poetry, as well as British literature surveys. She has held administrative posts including chair of the English program, chair of the humanities division, and director of the writer-in-residence program.

An exceptional teacher, White has been honored at Centre with designation to the Luellen Professorship and induction as an honorary member of Phi Beta Kappa. At the ceremony for the latter award, White was described as a person marked by “enthusiasm for literature, high critical standards, and skillful teaching.”

White has published articles on several modern and contemporary writers, including John Berryman, Margaret Atwood, Iris Murdoch, Jane Kenyon, and others. She has also presented papers at two international Milton conferences. White contributed to Mother Puzzles, an anthology published by Greenwood Press. White is working on a book on portraits of the artist in novels by women.

She has a bachelor’s degree from Albion College, a master’s degree from the University of Chicago, and a doctorate from Stanford.

File last updated: 7/8/13

Lesley Wiglesworth

Photo of  Lesley  Wiglesworth
Associate Professor of Mathematics Mathematics Address Wiseman—103 Phone: 859.238.5917

Lesley Wiglesworth joined Centre’s faculty in 2008. She is associate professor of mathematics and was named a Centre Scholar in 2012.

Her research interests are in discrete mathematics and more specifically combinatorics and graph theory. She enjoys studying visibility graphs, a type of graph with applications to circuit layout design. Most recently, Wiglesworth worked on a problem involving the game-acquisition number of graphs with a student at Centre.

She graduated magna cum laude from Transylvania University with a B.A. in mathematics. She earned her M.A. in mathematics and Ph.D. in applied and industrial mathematics from the University of Louisville.

File last updated: 5/2/13

Kaelyn Wiles

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Assistant Professor of Sociology Sociology Address Crounse Hall—325 Phone: 859.238.5382

Kaelyn Wiles came to Centre in 2013 as assistant professor of sociology.

Her scholarly interests include the sociology of health and illness, and environmental sociology.

Wiles received a B.A. in biology from Oberlin College, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

File last updated: 9/4/13

Lisa Williams

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Paul L. Cantrell Professor of English • Director of Creative Writing Program English, Creative Writing Address Crounse Hall—411 Home Phone: 859.238.5257

Lisa Williams is Paul L. Cantrell Professor of English and director of the Creative Writing Program at Centre College, where she has taught since 2001.

Williams has published three books of poems: Gazelle in the House (New Issues Poetry and Prose, 2014), Woman Reading to the Sea (2008), and The Hammered Dulcimer (1998). Since 2015, she has served as Series Editor for The University Press of Kentucky New Poetry and Prose Series. Williams has been a recipient of the Rome Prize, the Barnard Women Poets Prize, the May Swenson Poetry Award, and an Al Smith Individual Artist Grant from the Kentucky Arts Council. Her poems have been featured in Poetry, The Kenyon Review, Orion, The New Republic, Best American Poetry 2009, and on Poetry Daily and Verse Daily, as well as other anthologies and magazines. Her essay-reviews of contemporary poets have appeared on The Rumpus.com, on Poetry Daily, in The Cincinnati Review, Orion, and The Hollins Critic. Originally from Nashville Tennessee, Williams received her MFA in Poetry from the University of Virginia, and her M.A. from the University of Cincinnati.

File last updated: 09/7/16

Ian W. Wilson

Photo of  Ian W. Wilson
Associate Professor of German and Humanities German, Humanities, Chinese, Japanese, and African and African American Studies Address Crounse Hall—461 Phone: 859.238.5241 Website: Personal Website:

Ian Wilson joined the Centre College faculty in the fall of 2003 as a visiting instructor of German and Humanities. He was awarded Centre’s “Rookie of the Year” in 2004 and in 2005 received the Kirk Award for excellence in teaching. He was named a Centre Scholar in 2009, and again in 2015, a two-year appointment recognizing teaching excellence, scholarship, and contributions to the Centre community.

He teaches courses in German language, literature, and culture, African American literature, and the first-year Humanities sequence. He has taken groups of students abroad during two CentreTerms and one summer and directed the Centre-in-Strasbourg program in 2008-09.

His current research project focuses on the role of ambiguity, obscurity, and illegibility in the works of Elfriede Jelinek. He is also co-editor of a developing edited volume entitled Cosmopolitanism Reconsidered: Jürgen Habermas, Germany, and the European Union. He has published articles Samuel Beckett, Elfriede Jelinek, and John Edgar Wideman; he was also a contributor to a German Studies Review forum on Germany and the Euro Crisis (2013) and An Encyclopedia of African American Literature (2005, Greenwood Press). Other scholarly interests include cultural issues in the European Union, W. G. Sebald, the Holocaust, monuments and memorialization, critical theory, cultural representations of the extreme (e.g., the sublime, the traumatic, the impossible), G.E. Lessing, and intersections between literature and other arts, especially photography and film. He has given papers at conferences of the Modern Language Association, the German Studies Association, the Austrian Studies Association, the American Comparative Literature Association, and the Southern Comparative Literature Association, and the Kentucky Foreign Language Conference.

He was previously a teaching fellow at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he taught courses in German, comparative literature, and German-language sections of courses in history and international studies. He was also a graduate teaching consultant at UNC-CH’s Center for Teaching and Learning.

Wilson is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Delta Phi Alpha German national honor society. In 2000-01, he conducted research at the Internationales Forschungszentrum Kulturwissenschaften in Vienna, Austria as a Fulbright Scholar. He received another Fulbright for the summer of 2012. He holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a B.A. in comparative literature and German from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

To read about his CentreTerm course “Introduction to the Cultural History of Central Europe,” click here.

File last updated: 06/05/15

John Wilson

Photo of  John  Wilson
H.W. Stodghill, Jr. and Adele H. Stodghill Professor of Mathematics Mathematics Address Olin Hall—111 Phone: 859.238.5409

John Wilson is professor of mathematics at Centre College, where he has taught since 1985. He has held a Stodghill Professorship in Science since its inception in 2004. He currently serves as chair of the Division of Science and Mathematics.

Wilson’s research interests is focused toward using mathematics to develop more efficient and reliable methods of transmitting and storing information. He has encouraged Centre students to collaborate in this research.

Wilson holds a B.S. in mathematics from the University of the South, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa. He completed M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of North Carolina.

To view a video about Dr. Wilson’s course that connects mathematics with blown glass ornaments, click here.

File last updated: 8/8/13

Marshall Wilt

Photo of  Marshall  Wilt
Professor Emeritus of Physics Emeritus Faculty Phone: 859.238.5392

Marshall Wilt retired in 2005 as a professor of physics at Centre College, where he taught since 1967 and is a past Centre Scholar. He has directed a summer science program at the college for gifted high school students and a physics institute for high school teachers. Wilt also has chaired the sciences division at the College.

A rigorous scientist and dedicated teacher, Wilt was honored in 1990 as Kentucky’s most outstanding science teacher at the college and university level. That award reflects the depth and quality of his work. Wilt routinely involves his students in collaborative research and has had at least one student pursue research with him in each of the last five summers. He has challenged those students by having them build some of the sensitive and crucial equipment needed for studies in laser spectroscopy. Working alongside Wilt, the students have built a laser and an electronic board to control it, as well as parts of an optical bench and other equipment. The lab has a computer interface with a digitizing oscilloscope. Presently, Wilt is attempting to use the technique of optical pumping to measure quantum electrodynamical effects.

Wilt has published twenty papers in internationally recognized refereed journals, often with Centre undergraduates as co-authors. Among the journals that have published his research are Journal of Inorganic Nuclear Chemistry, Journal of Chemical Physics, Journal of Molecular Spectroscopy, American Journal of Physics, and The Physics Teacher.

Wilt earned a B.A. from Centre summa cum laude and completed a Ph.D. at Vanderbilt University.

File last updated: 5/2/13

Steve Winrich

Photo of  Steve  Winrich
Professor of Economics Economics Address Crounse Hall—328 Phone: 859.238.5317

Steve Winrich is professor of economics at Centre College, where he has taught since 1981. He also serves the College as director of institutional research.

Winrich’s teaching and research interests include economic theory, history of economic thought, political economy, methodology, environmental, and labor. He also has an interest and strong skills in the use of technology for college-level teaching, research, and business. He is a developer and consultant for statistical, spreadsheet, and database management software.

Winrich holds a B.A. from the University of Louisville; he completed his M.A. and Ph.D. at the University of Kentucky.

File last updated: 10/9/13

Christian Wood

Photo of  Christian  Wood
Visiting Assistant Professor of French Centre College Address Grant Hall—316 Phone: 859.238.5251

Christian Wood joined the Centre College faculty in 2016 as visiting assistant professor of French.

His research interests include 20th and 21st-century: Continental Philosophy, Francophone and French Literature, and Love as an intellectual discourse, focusing upon French Existentialist thinkers and Algerian novelists.

Wood earned a B.A. in philosophy from the University of California, San Diego, and master’s degrees and Ph.D.s in French studies and philosophy from the University of New Mexico.

File last updated: 9/8/2016

Jessica A. Wooten

Photo of  Jessica A. Wooten
Associate Professor of Biology • Pre-Veterinary Advisor Biology Address Young—225 Phone: 859.238.5322

Jessica Wooten joined Centre in 2014, and is associate professor of biology.

Her research interests include conservation, molecular evolution, phylogeography, and population genetics of vertebrates.

She received a B.S. and M.S. in biological science from Marshall University, and a Ph.D. from The University of Alabama.

File last updated: 9/7/16

Joe Workman

Photo of  Joe  Workman
Professor of Chemistry • Chief Health Professions Advisor • Medical School Advisor Chemistry Address Young Hall—117 Phone: 859.238.5415 Website: web.centre.edu/workmanj/

Joe Workman is professor of chemistry, having taught at Centre since 1993. He currently is pursuing research in igneous petrology and geochemistry. He has projects in two areas: single crystal laser fluorination analysis of volcanic rocks for oxygen isotopes from Iceland and Cascades volcanoes to investigate magma origin and the investigation of mass-independent isotope effects of oxygen and sulfur isotopes in volcanic sulfate as a tool to understand the destiny of volcanic plumes and their interaction with the upper atmosphere.

Workman is committed to involving students in research and has collaborated with students in research teams in many summers since coming to Centre. In the 2001-02 academic year, Workman was a visiting research professor at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, where he did work in organometallic chemistry. In 2007-08, Workman was a visiting professor at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia doing research in green chemistry.

In January 2004 he led a group of 34 Centre students to New Zealand to study the physical science of volcanoes. He has subsequently led students in New Zealand studying volcanoes in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012, and will again in 2014.

Workman also serves as academic advisor to students interested in pre-medical studies, and he has assisted students with MCAT study sessions and field trips to major medical schools. Workman is an energetic teacher and played a leadership role in Centre’s successful efforts to secure a high field nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer, which is accessible to students for study and research.

Workman holds a B.S. from Santa Clara University, and he earned a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University.

File last updated: 10/17/13


EXPERT: Inorganic chemistry — Liquid crystals — Advisement for pre-medical students

Inorganic chemist with expertise on liquid crystals. Currently investigating a relatively new form of liquid crystal that contains metal ions. Has collaborated with students in research teams each summer since coming to Centre; his former students have won awards including Fulbright Scholarships. Academic advisor to students interested in pre-medical studies. Helped Centre secure a high field nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer.


Kensuke Yamada

Photo of  Kensuke  Yamada
Visiting Assistant Professor of Art Centre College Address JVAC—105 Phone: 859.238.5754

Kensuke Yamada joined the Centre College faculty in 2016 as visiting assistant professor of art.

His ceramics figurative work embodies enchantment and is inspired by universal experiences. He uses gestures, textures and patterns to relate simple, yet meaningful body language and facial expressions, all the while creating a rhythm that literally brings his figures to life. He spent the month of May 2016 as Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art’s latest Martin Shallenberger Artist-in-Residence, creating the playful sculptures for his exhibition, Diving Through Clouds. This film documents the entire process of Kensuke’s residency from creation of the work to the final installation of the exhibition https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSSnl2tkuHw.

Yamada earned a B.A. in studio art from The Evergreen State College, and an M.F.A. in studio art from The University of Montana.

File last updated: 8/8/2016

Karin Young

Photo of  Karin  Young
Assistant Professor of Chemistry Chemistry Address Young Hall—115B Phone: 859.238.5323

Karin (Kari) Young joined the faculty at Centre College in 2013 as an assistant professor of chemistry. She was named a Centre Scholar in 2016.
Young teaches courses in general chemistry and inorganic chemistry. She is particularly interested in developing meaningful laboratory exercises for students in inorganic chemistry. Young also teaches courses in alternative energy technology, which are inspired by her graduate work on artificial photosynthesis for solar energy applications. In CentreTerm 2015, Young teamed up with Professor Ellen Swanson to teach students about wind, solar, and hydroelectric power. The course included a visit to the Mother Ann Lee Hydroelectric Station, which generates the Renewable Energy Credits purchased by the student green fund.
She also has a special interest in how nature uses iron and manganese centers to catalyze important oxidation reactions. At Centre, Young and her students are studying a family of iron, manganese, and cobalt complexes as catalysts for the oxidation of lignin model compounds. Lignin is a complex biopolymer found in wood and is commonly seen as the “brown” in brown paper bags that is bleached (chemically degraded) to make white paper. Because lignin has an irregular structure and is difficult to oxidize, harsh chemical methods are used in the paper industry. However, the enzymes lignin peroxidase and manganese peroxidase, which are produced by the white-rot fungus and are known to degrade lignin in wood, use iron or manganese and benign oxidizing agents to complete the lignin oxidation reactions. Our goal is use this inspiration from nature to study new, synthetic catalysts that might make the paper bleaching process greener by using less energy and producing fewer waste products.
Originally from Texas, Young graduated magna cum laude from the University of Tulsa with a B.A. in chemistry and English, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She subsequently earned an M.S. in chemistry and a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from Yale University, advised by Gary W. Brudvig.

File last updated: 8/30/16

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