Faculty & Staff

The faculty in the Sociology Department are teacher-scholars who are highly engaged in their field. In recent years, members of the department have published more than a dozen books, with more on the way, as well as numerous scholarly articles, conference presentations and other research reports. Faculty members have also been honored for excellence in teaching by the Panhellenic Association and selected to receive the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching and the SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Scholarship & Creative Activities.

Lisa Curch

Office: 14-L Schumacher
Email: Lisa.Curch@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3380

Lisa Curch received her M.A. in 1997 from the University of South Florida in Tampa, FL and her Ph.D. in 2002 from the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY. Dr. Curch teaches courses in aging, medical sociology, social policy, social psychology, and sociology of food and eating. She is also the coordinator for the Gerontology Studies major. Her research interests involve social aspects of aging and health (particularly related to food and eating), residential/spatial issues of aging, and media and aging. She currently is working on research in representations of aging and older adults in television animation. Dr. Curch is the author of Food and Eating Experiences of Older Women in a Retirement Community: A Sociological Analysis (2006), in addition to several articles and presentations.

Ho Hon Leung

Office: 14-A Schumacher
Email: leungh@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-2239

Ho Hon Leung received his Ph.D. in Sociology from McGill University, Canada. His main research areas include ethnic studies, immigration and immigrants, comparative ethnic aging. He recently develops a research interest in ethnic identity and architecture. Collaborated with Raymond Lau, an architect in London, UK, he has research projects in Canada, US, Hong Kong, Greece, China, and Macau. He is the co-editor of a book entitled Investigating Diversity: Race, Ethnicity, and Beyond (Linton Atlantic Books, Ltd, 2008) He is also the chair of steering committee of Center for Social Science Research, which encourages multi- and inter- disciplinary studies on a wide range of topics.

Brian Lowe

Office:14-E Schumacher
Email: lowebm@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3046

Brian M. Lowe received his BAH and Master’s in Sociology from Queen’s University at Kingston, Ontario and his Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Virginia. Dr. Lowe’s research and teaching interests include sociological theories, animal and society, cultural and comparative-historical sociology and spectacular conflicts. He is the author of Emerging Moral Vocabularies: The Creation and Establishment of New Forms of Moral and Ethical Meanings ( Lexington books, 2006) and several articles. In 2008 Lowe became Chair of the Animals and Society section of the American Sociological Association.

Fida Mohammad

Office: 14-G Schumacher
Email: mohammf@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-2166

Dr. Fida Mohammad received his Ph.D. from the University of Oregon. Dr. Mohammad was born in Hangu KPK Pakistan, and is ethnically Pashtun from Shinwari tribe, and came to the United States in 1986. Hangu hosts the headquarters of the Orakzai agency of FATA (Federally Administered Tribal Area). He teaches courses in Criminal Justice and Sociology, such as Societal Deviance, Criminology, Terrorism, Risk & Society, Sociology of Knowledge, Disaster, Risk & Society and Sociology of Islam. He has given lectures to professional and public audiences, as well written for professional and popular media outlets, about the dynamics of Afghan and Pakistan crises; topics include terrorism, suicide bombing, corruption and martyrdom.

Alexander R. Thomas

Department Chair & Professor
Office: 14-C Schumacher
Email: thomasa@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3113

Alex Thomas received his Ph.D. in 1998 from Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts. Dr. Thomas has interests in historical-comparative sociology, particularly related to urban-rural relations, and deviant behavior. His current research focuses on the development of cities and their relationship to the hinterland in the Ancient Near East and the lessons to be learned for modern cities. He is the author of In Gotham's Shadow (2003) and Gilboa (2005) and the co-author of Spotlight on Social Research (2003) and Upstate Down (2009); as well as several articles and presentations.

Gregory Fulkerson

Associate Professor
Office: 14-B Schumacher
Email: fulkergm@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-2834

Gregory Fulkerson received his M.A in Sociology from Western Michigan University in 2000, taught 2 years at Lansing Community College, and earned his Ph.D. in Sociology from North Carolina State University in 2006. He is interested in issues related to globalization, rurality, community, agriculture, and the environment. His current research investigates the local and global processes leading to environmental degradation and the social response to these problems, particularly in relation to urban-rural processes. He is the author of several conference presentations, journal articles, book chapters, and book, Critical Rural Theory (co-authored)). He recently co-edited a volume, Studies in Urbanormativity, and served as the program chair for the Rural Sociological Society.

Elizabeth Seale

Associate Professor
Office: 14-I Schumacher
Email: sealeek@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3560

Elizabeth Seale received her Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in 2010. Her interests include race, class, and gender; health and the human body; poverty and social welfare; and global inequality.

Melissa Lavin

Assistant Professor
Office: 14P Schumacher
Email: Melissa.Lavin@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3527

Melissa Lavin received her B.A. in 2003 from University of Colorado at Boulder, her M.S. in 2006 from Southern Connecticut State University, and her Ph.D. in 2011 from University of Connecticut. Dr. Lavin teaches diverse courses in sociology and criminal justice, including police and society, criminology, drugs and society, and race, crime and justice. She is also adviser to the criminal justice club, and is affiliated faculty with women and gender studies. Her research interests include crime and deviance, gender and sexuality, sociological psychology and symbolic interaction, inequalities, and qualitative methods. Her work appears in the Journal of Deviant Behavior.

Jessica Finkeldey

Assistant Professor
Office: 14N Schumacher
Email: jessica.finkeldey@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3524

Jessica Finkeldey received her Ph.D. in 2017 from Bowling Green State University. Dr. Finkeldey's teaching interests include areas of criminology, corrections, social problems, minority groups, and social research methods. Her research focuses on racial/ethnic disparities within and between social institutions, the individual, familial, and societal consequences of mass incarceration, as well as the intersection of race/ethnicity, class, gender, and self-identities on antisocial behavior.

Tyler Dupont

Assistant Professor
Office: 14M Schumacher
Email: tyler.dupont@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3523

Dr. Dupont received his Ph.D. from the University of Buffalo in 2017 and joined the department in 2016. His research interest is on subcultures, with an emphasis on the skateboarding subculture. His research has been presented at professional conferences and published in academic journals in the U.S. and in Finland, where he engaged in international study.

Beniam Awash

Office: n/a
Email: beniam.awash@oneonta.edu
Phone: n/a

Professor Awash is earning his Ph.D. from Binghamton University. He joined the sociology department in 2016, and teaches a range of courses, from the introduction to sociology to upper division and special topics courses. His research interest is on the environment and other issues of national and international security.

Adjunct Faculty

Stephen Koonz

Lecturer of Sociology
Office: 14-N Schumacher
Email: koonzsj@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3512

Stephen Koonz teaches sociology and criminal justice courses.

AnnMarie Mills

Lecturer of Sociology and Internship Coordinator
Office: N/A
Email: millsam@oneonta.edu
Phone: 436-3512

AnnMarie Mills teaches courses in the sociology department and coordinates internships for the Human Services Pre-Professional Track of the Sociology Major.

Faculty Emeriti

Marilyn Helterline | Ph.D., the University of Notre Dame, Professor Emeritus of Sociology.

Donald Nielsen | Ph.D., the University of New School for Social Research, Professor Emeritus of Sociology.

Eugene Obindinski | Ph.D., SUNY Buffalo, Professor Emeritus of Sociology.

Martin Spencer | Ph.D., the University of New School for Social Research, Professor Emeritus of Sociology.

Edward Wesnofske | MA., the University of New School for Social.


Michele Myers-Platt

Department Secretary
Office: Main Office Schumacher
Email: myersmf@oneonta.edu
Phone: 607-436-3512

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