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Blackboard Catalyst Awards

Meet the Exemplary Course Program Directors

Torria Bond

Torria Bond

Dr. Torria Bond is an accomplished educator with expertise in the areas of curriculum and course design for today’s multi-generational adult learning audience. A published writer, researcher, presenter, and award winning course designer, Tori shares her 20+ years of experience in elementary, secondary, and post-secondary education, her understanding of course management systems, learning theories, and instructional design principles, to mentor university professors in their efforts to infuse technology and create interactive and engaging online courses for adult learners. Her scholarship can be read in peer reviewed journals such as The Journal for Childhood Education published by the Association for Childhood Education International; Teachers College Record; The Journal for Educational Considerations published by the College of Education at Kansas State University, as well as an chapter entitled “The Good Teacher” published in Kidd and Chen’s edited textbook, “Ubiquitous Learning: Strategies for Pedagogy, Course Design and Technology. Her understanding of the intersection between learning theories and instructional technologies is expressed regularly on her site at TorriaBond.com. She earned her Ph.D. in Education at Claremont Graduate University and currently serves as an Instructional Designer for the Online and Professional Studies Division of California Baptist University in Riverside, CA.

Deborah Everhart

Deborah Everhart

Dr. Deborah Everhart is a Product Manager and Strategist at Blackboard, where she provides architectural strategy and guidance throughout product planning and development processes. Her responsibilities include researching, analyzing, and designing features and functionality for Blackboard products. She teaches as an Adjunct Assistant Professor in Georgetown University’s Medieval Studies program. She received her Ph.D. in English from the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Everhart has written numerous articles and presented papers and seminars on medieval literature, emerging technologies, and the future of teaching and learning.

David Graf

David Graf

Dr. David Graf has been an instructional technologist and educator for over forty years. During his academic travels he has worn such hats as instructional designer, instructional developer, academic department chair, graduate program director, faculty development director, and technology support director. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Association for Educational Communications & Technology (AECT), the Wisconsin Educational Media Association (WEMA), and the Professional and Organizational Development Network (POD Network). During his tenure at Iowa State University, David provided professional development training for faculty who were involved in distance learning. And, at Valdosta State University, he was instrumental in initiating a training program for faculty starting to work on course development using WebCT. David was the lead for the Blackboard Implementation Team for the Fischler School of Education at Nova Southeastern University when the institution migrated to Blackboard in 2010. He recently chaired a task force that developed online course guidelines based on the Exemplary Course Program and Quality Matters rubrics. In his role as a Director of Academic and Faculty Support he is currently chairing a major curriculum review of a doctoral program.

Kathy Keairns

Kathy Keairns

Kathy Keairns is the Director of Web-Based Learning at the University of Denver (DU). She holds a B.A. in Sociology and a Masters in Digital Media Studies from the University of Denver. Kathy is the Co-Chair of the eLearning Consortium of Colorado and a certified Quality Matters Peer Reviewer as well as her university’s QM institutional representative. She designs and facilitates an intensive Teaching Online Workshop (TOW) for University of Denver instructors new to online teaching. Kathy and her colleague, Dr. Bridget Arend, were Professional and Organizational Development (POD) Award Finalist’s in recognition of innovation in faculty development and instructional development for their online New Faculty Workshop Blackboard course in 2012. That same year, Kathy and Bridget were one of the recipients of a Blackboard Catalyst Staff Development Award for Excellence in Online Professional Development. Kathy received her Sloan-C Certificate in Online Teaching in October 2011 and she is the former Co-Chair of the Colorado Rocky Mountain Blackboard Users Group. She has been a Blackboard ECP reviewer for the past several years and is looking forward to joining the ECP team.

Shirley Waterhouse

Shirley Waterhouse

Dr. Shirley Waterhouse is the Executive Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning Excellence at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Daytona Beach Campus, the world's leading institution of higher education in aviation and aerospace. While a fulltime professor in the ERAU Department of Computer Science, Dr. Waterhouse won the outstanding teaching award, bestowed by graduating seniors, eleven out of fourteen semesters. Dr. Waterhouse is also President of eLearnGlobal, a small consulting practice focusing on faculty elearning development and elearning strategic planning. Dr. Waterhouse has authored six books; and the most recent is The Power of eLearning: The Essential Guide for Teaching in the Digital Age, an Allyn & Bacon (Pearson) publication, 2005. She has been a director in the Blackboard Exemplary Course Program since its inception. For more information on Shirley, visit http://shirleywaterhouse.com.

Susan Zvacek

Susan Zvacek

Dr. Susan M. Zvacek is the Senior Director of Teaching Excellence and Learning Technologies at Fort Hays State University. Susan holds a B.A. in Speech from Iowa State University, a Masters in Education from the University of Utah, and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instructional Technology, also from Iowa State University. She was a faculty member at the University of Northern Colorado from 1989 to 1994, where she taught undergraduate teacher education courses and graduate courses in educational technology. She also developed and taught graduate courses at Old Dominion University, where she was the Director of the Center for Learning Technologies, and at Nova Southeastern University, where she is an adjunct faculty member of the Instructional Technology and Distance Education department. Her scholarly work has been primarily in the field of educational technology, with publications and presentations at national and international conferences on topics such as faculty development, assessing learning with online tools, and promoting higher order thinking. Susan was a Fulbright Scholar to the Czech Republic where she taught at Charles University in Prague and is a co-author of Teaching and Learning at a Distance, now in its 5th edition.

 

Important Dates

  • December 1, 2013: Submissions are accepted for all categories.
  • February 17, 2014: Submissions due for all categories.
  • Early May 2014: Winners selected and notified for all categories.
  • July 2014: Winners recognized at BbWorld 2014 in Las Vegas.