Carla Klausner, Curators’ Teaching Professor of History, Rebecca Roberts, Lecturer in Mathematics, Yanching (Jerry) Jean, Curators’ Professor of Chemistry, Robert Evanson, Associate Professor of Political Science and Wayne Lucas, Professor of Criminal Justice and Criminology will be joining the ranks of the retired by summer’s end. We thank them for their service to the College and UMKC and wish them well in their retirement. Each was asked to reflect on their days at UMKC. The replies that have arrived are printed below.
Y.C. (Jerry) Jean (Chemistry) will become Curators’ Professor Emeritus as of September 1, 2012 after an academic career at UMKC of 32 years. The first 8 years were in Physics and the remaining 24 years were in Chemistry. He also served as Chair of Chemistry between 1994 and 2006. His research is in the areas of physical chemistry and materials science. It has been recognized numerous times when he was named the UMKC Trustees’ Fellow and received the N.T. Veatch Distinguished Research Award. He has been a Fellow of American Physical Society since 1994. He has published over 340 scientific articles and 8 books while at UMKC and mentored over 50 M.S. and Ph.D. students in addition to some others doing postdoctoral work . He will continue to serve as Senior Pastor at Emmanuel Chinese Baptist Church in Lenexa and continue his scientific research at UMKC after his retirement.
Robert K. Evanson (Political Science) came to UMKC in 1980 as an Assistant Professor teaching comparative and international politics. His research interests have been focused on east-central Europe, Soviet and post-Soviet Russia, and international relations theory. In 1989 he was invited by then Dean Max Skidmore to serve as an associate dean in the College of Arts and Sciences, after which he worked as a faculty intern in the office of the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, Marvin Querry, and as chair of his department. For many years he was principal advisor in the Master of Arts program in Political Science. He greatly enjoyed these various experiences and is grateful to the colleagues who made them possible. He most enjoyed, however, his time spent with his undergraduate and graduate students, and the pleasure of working with so many congenial colleagues, including those in his own department. Bob has been nominated for emeritus status and has been appointed a James C. Olson professor.
He and his wife Nan are relocating to the Seattle area, where Nan’s daughter and family live. They will spend their summers at Bob’s family cottage in Wisconsin. Bob will be finishing a book this summer which he is co-editing and to which he is contributing two chapters. He looks forward to completing other writing projects and enjoying the great outdoors in both Washington and Wisconsin through hiking, birding, and golf, as well as spending time with family and friends.
Carla Klausner (History) received her doctorate from Harvard University in History and Middle East studies in 1963, in the first year that Harvard granted the Ph.D. to women. She began her teaching career at UMKC with a part-time appointment in 1964 and received a tenure track position in 1966. In her years at UMKC, she taught a variety of undergraduate and graduate courses in Medieval European, Islamic, Ottoman, Middle East, Jewish and Holocaust history. She also enjoyed participating in the NEH grant that established the Cluster Course program and teaching the “Courts and Culture in the High Middle Ages” course with emerita professor Linda Voigts. Carla received the Shelby Storck award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, the Interfraternity Council Good Teaching Award, was a Mortarboard Honoree, received the UMKC Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Faculty Award from the Doctoral Student Association, and in 2004 was named Curators Distinguished Teaching Professor. As the only full-time female faculty member in the History department for at least twenty years, and among the handful of women on the faculty in those early days, she also was tapped for service on countless College and University committees. She is gratified and thankful that there are now so many wonderful and accomplished female colleagues in the department and throughout the system. For many years, she served as the History MA advisor and IPhD coordinator. Her expertise on the Middle East led to countless lectures to academic and community audiences on various aspects of the history, culture and politics of the region, as well as numerous media appearances. Her textbook with Ian Bickerton on the Arab-Israeli conflict (Prentice Hall) is now in a sixth edition, and she is working on a seventh edition as well as on a sourcebook on the modern Middle East for Oxford University Press. She loved being in the classroom and now, in her emerita status, looks forward to teaching part-time for the next three years as an Olson professor.
Wayne Lucas (Criminal Justice & Criminology) will retire and become Professor Emeritus as of September 1, 2012. He has also been appointed as a James C. Olson Professor. He came to UMKC in 1976 as an Assistant Professor, and was the first faculty member hired by the first department Chair, Abraham Blumberg, in the newly established “Administration of Justice” program. The program name was changed in 1999 to “Criminal Justice & Criminology.” Over the 36 years at UMKC, Wayne rose through the ranks to Full Professor, and taught a number of courses from the CJC curriculum. Recently he focused on courses in research methods, criminal behavior systems, and a course reflecting his research emphasis in drug use and control policies. Wayne received the College of Arts & Sciences Alumni Teaching Award, and the first Annual Teaching Award presented by the combined Sociology-Criminal Justice & Criminology department, in 2000. His research has been published in several journals devoted to the drug abuse area, and he worked extensively with the National Institute on Drug Abuse, and local forums such as the Jackson County ComBAT Program, in the development of effective drug abuse treatment and prevention programs. Under the Olson Professor program he plans to continue offering his drug use and control policies course, as well as work in further developing links between the CJC department and local community.