Governance

RMWCA Officers                                                                                                                                      

EXECUTIVE BOARD

President: Star Coulbrooke, Utah State University

I have been director of the Utah State University Writing Center since January 2008. I came up through the ranks as an undergrad tutor and writing fellow from 1993-1996, a graduate tutor from 1996-1998, and assistant director from 1999-2007. I’ve co-hosted three RMPTC’s, in 1999, 2004, and 2012.

My strengths as director are collaboration (with departments, colleges, and community), delegation (my staff of sixty tutors, supervisors, and associates eagerly take-on exciting roles which they manage well with little supervision), organization, and communication. I hope to be a catalyst for strengthening our ties as a region.

President-Elect: Kelly Webster, University of Montana

I welcome the challenge of serving as President-elect for the Rocky Mountain Writing Centers Association, an organization that inspires me to reach out to and learn from colleagues across our large region. RMWCA has been an important resource for me, and volunteering for this role reflects my belief that each of us has a responsibility to help sustain the RMWCA community. I have acted as the Director of the University of Montana’s Writing Center since 2008. In addition to my role as Director, I co-administer UM’s University-wide Program-level Writing Assessment and coordinate a number of writing in the disciplines and writing across the curriculum initiatives. While I enjoy working with faculty and teaching workshops across the disciplines, I still am most satisfied when talking with student writers in the Writing Center—I always will delight in the ethical and necessary work of writing tutoring. Before directing the UM Writing Center, I co-directed the Chemeketa Community College Writing Center in Oregon. Prior to my time in Oregon, I taught as a teaching fellow in the Writing Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz. I always have loved the West, but I love the Rocky Mountain West (and its writers) best. I am eager to work with the current Executive Board members to ensure RMWCA’s visibility and to cultivate support for the good writing center folks in our region.

Outreach Coordinator: Mary Ann Judge, University of Idaho 

I am honored that Star Coulbrooke nominated me to be the Outreach Coordinator for the Rocky Mountain Writing Center Association. Shortly after I was hired as a lecturer in the Department of English at the University of Idaho, I was asked to develop a writing center.  That was 1992, and I have been doing this work ever since.

 Each day, when a student sits at one of our round tables with another student, I see the power of collaborative learning in our writing center. It’s a safe space, a place where students disclose what they don’t know, admit what’s hard for them as writers, discover what they would really like to say in their writing, recognize how a careful—and kind—reader responds to their work, and experience being treated like a writer whose work merits close attention. It’s a place where the tutors learn as much from the process as the students they assist. 

 Our writing center community at the University of Idaho has enriched my life.  I know I am privileged to do this work, and I know I could not have done it without the wisdom of the larger writing center community whose work I have experienced, for the most part, by reading. It’s time for me to give back to that larger community.  I must confess that I do not have a particular plan for what I hope to accomplish in this role, other than reaching out to the community and finding ways to bring us together.  I have much to learn and welcome any guidance others can offer.  

One more point: I was born in Denver and raised in Colorado. I love the idea of serving an organization that begins with “Rocky Mountain.” 

Treasurer:Elizabeth Kleinfeld, Metropolitan State University of Denver

I have been involved with writing centers since 1995, as a tutor, director, researcher, and evangelist. Although words are my first love, I am comfortable with numbers, math, and spreadsheets, and I have the patience to read through IRS publications. As treasurer, I would like to tighten up oversight of our finances, including ensuring that RMWCA is in compliance with all IRS rules about non-profit organizations. I will also explore options for funding research grants and achievement awards to members. 

Secretary: Joyce Adams, Brigham Young University
When I was hired to create a writing center for social science students, I didn’t even know that RMWCA existed.  I could have benefited greatly from the help of this organization.  I would like to assist in making these resources available to more writing center directors in our region.  I believe a personal contact and invitation to writing directors in each school in the region would provide a welcoming environment. In addition to university [and high school] writing centers, some schools have discipline-specific writing centers and I would like to identify and serve these directors, as well.  I believe that we have much more to offer each other as members and I would like to assist in creating an electronic newsletter to better address needs, interests, and questions of those affiliated with writing centers in our region.

STATE REPRESENTATIVES

Arizona: Leslie Chilton, Arizona State University, Downtown Phoenix
I am interested in running for this position because my university, Arizona State University, Downtown Phoenix campus, needs to become more actively involved in state and regional events. As coordinator of a relatively new program of our university establishing a writing center at a local high school, I need to become more involved with the status of tutoring and current issues, as well as establishing connections.

Colorado: Traci Freeman, University of Colorado-Colorado Springs
As state representative for Colorado in the RMWCA, I would like to continue to cultivate the relationship between the writing centers in Colorado and the rest of the region. I am currently President/Conference Chair for the Colorado/Wyoming Writing Tutors Conference (CWWTC), a loose group of Writing Centers along the Front Range, who gather for an annual conference and several less formal meetings. The CWWTC has collaborated in the past with the RMWCA to present a joint conference, and I would work to encourage more dialogue between our organizations and, perhaps, more joint efforts.

Idaho: Melissa Keith, Boise State University
One of the greatest strengths (and joys) of writing center work is our sense of community.  Attending IWCA and NCPTW, and also coordinating the IWCA Summer Institute for two years, I experienced that sense of community in real time, forming lasting friendships and fruitful professional relationships.  I hope to:  1) create a network of Idaho writing centers (both college and high school), and 2) forge connections between Idaho writing centers and regional and national organizations.  By sharing our expertise and participating in regional and national conversations, we can be a rich resource to each other.

Montana: Kelly Webster, University of Montana

I Want to continue serving as the Montana rep in addition to serving as President-elect for the Rocky Mountain Writing Centers Association. RMWCA has been an important resource for me, and volunteering for this role reflects my belief that each of us has a responsibility to help sustain the RMWCA community. I have acted as the Director of the University of Montana’s Writing Center since 2008. In addition to my role as Director, I co-administer UM’s University-wide Program-level Writing Assessment and coordinate a number of writing in the disciplines and writing across the curriculum initiatives. While I enjoy working with faculty and teaching workshops across the disciplines, I still am most satisfied when talking with student writers in the Writing Center—I always will delight in the ethical and necessary work of writing tutoring. Before directing the UM Writing Center, I co-directed the Chemeketa Community College Writing Center in Oregon. Prior to my time in Oregon, I taught as a teaching fellow in the Writing Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz. I always have loved the West, but I love the Rocky Mountain West (and its writers) best. I am eager to work with the current Executive Board members to ensure RMWCA’s visibility and to cultivate support for the good writing center folks in our region.

Nevada: Robyn Rohde,College of Southern Nevada 

New Mexico: Steve Simpson, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology
I direct the Writing Center at New Mexico Tech, and I am interested in serving as the New Mexico state representative for the Rocky Mountain Writing Centers Association for a number of reasons. Before taking a position at New Mexico Tech, I worked with the Robert J. Connors Writing Center at the University of New Hampshire, which was heavily involved with the Northeast Writing Centers Association (NEWCA). Our writing center benefited greatly from being networked with nearby writing centers. Our undergraduate tutors even had ample opportunities to share their own experiences at the annual NEWCA conference and to network with their undergraduate peers at other institutions. Given the sheer size of New Mexico as compared to New England, networking in this way tends to be considerably more difficult, and writing center practitioners tend to feel a little more isolated. As state representative, I hope to reenergize lines of communication among writing centers in New Mexico so that we can benefit from each other’s ideas and share strategies for meeting the needs of our state’s diverse and multi/trans-lingual population.

Moreover, I understand that these times have been complex politically for writing centers—and higher education—in our state. Between state-wide hiring freezes and a new state governor with a mixed record on education, funding for writing center work has been hard to come by. Conversely, many of our institutions have been eligible for a variety of government grants for Hispanic-serving institutions. Writing centers are potentially critical resources for under-represented populations in our states, and writing centers that are able to make this case have benefited from these grants and have better established themselves as an indispensable part of their institutions. (Our own writing center at New Mexico Tech has received substantial funding from a Department of Education Title V grant for graduate students). Thus, writing center directors require—perhaps even more than usual—a certain degree of political savvy. In this vein, our centers would benefit greatly from being better connected with each other and with a larger organization with colleagues to advise us on such political matters. As state representative, I hope to open these lines of communication, as well, as doing so not only helps us strategize within New Mexico, but allows others from neighboring states to benefit from the exciting writing center work going on down in the Land of Enchantment.

Utah: Leigh Ann Copas, Utah Valley University
As the Utah state representative for RMWCA, I hope to become better acquainted with the local writing center directors and their programs. I would like to assist in unifying our expertise and resources, and to develop a solid network among programs. Recently, I attended the IWCA Summer Institute, and I’ve been involved with NCLCA and attended the state and national CRLA conferences. I’ve enjoyed the sense of community and the continuing dialogues and friendships, and hope to share similar experiences in Utah and throughout the Rocky Mountain region.  

Wyoming: Julia Whyde, Casper College
I would like to serve as the Wyoming state representative for the RMWCA in order to learn from other writing centers across the region and better advocate for writing centers in the state.  As state representative for Wyoming, I hope to gain access to current discussions regarding writing and its place in secondary and higher education, both at the community college and four-year level, in order to better participate in statewide discussions regarding allocation of funds, curriculum requirement
s, and assessment.

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Star Coulbrooke,
Mar 19, 2012, 4:20 PM