The UTC Faculty Senate and the entire campus community honors four retiring faculty members for their outstanding service to the University:

Dr. Charles H. Lippy, philosophy and religion
Dr. Jane D. Reagor, interior design
Dr. Jeanette Stepanske, Teacher Preparation Academy
Dr. Judith H. Wakim, nursing

Dr. Charles H. Lippy, LeRoy A. Martin Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies, joined the UTC faculty in 1994.

Lippy began his career in education as Assistant Professor of Religion at Oberlin College in 1972. Since then, he has taught at several colleges, including: Visiting Assistant Professor of Religion and American Studies at Miami University, Assistant Professor of Bible and Religion at West Virginia Wesleyan College, and Assistant Professor, Associate Professor and Professor of Religion at Clemson University.

He has also served as a visiting scholar for the Department of History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and as a visiting professor for the Department of Religion and Institute for the Liberal Arts at Emory University.

Lippy graduated Magna Cum Laude from Dickinson College, where he received his Bachelor of Arts, and also from Union Theological Seminary, from which he earned his Master of Divinity. He then attended Princeton University, where he acquired a Master of Arts and a Ph.D.

Among his many accomplishments, Lippy has authored/edited 21 books (most recently a three-volume book on Faith in America published in 2006), written 136 articles/essays that have been published in professional journals, books, and encyclopedias, and he has presented 116 papers at numerous conferences through the spring of 2008.

He is the recipient of several grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the 1988 Fulbright Scholar in India award. In March 2007, he was honored by the Southeastern Commission on the Study of Religion with a retrospective panel on his career. Most recently, he has been elected President-Elect of the American Society of Church History.

He has served seven years on the board of Chattanooga Cares, two of which he was chair. He was co-chair of the Southeast Tennessee Council for HIV/AIDS Care Prevention for six years; and has been guest organist at 10 different churches/synagogues in the Chattanooga area.

Dr. Jane D. Reagor, Professor of Interior Design, joined the UTC faculty in 1999. Throughout her nine years at the University, one of her proudest achievements in the department of Interior Design has been the initiation of AutoCAD, a computer aided drafting program.

Reagor has also designed three CAD courses taught at UTC. She uses her expertise to work with the department’s student interns to create digital portfolios. Students then post the portfolios on their career-based websites for future development and employment opportunities.

Reagor began her career as a designer of model and showcase homes. She taught in the high school system before advancing to a collegiate career. She served for 11 years at Georgia Southern College, and another ten years at Tennessee Technological University.

Her professional honors include the 2007 National Leader Award from the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences and the 2006 State Leader Award from the Tennessee Association of Family and Consumer Sciences. She has also been named the 2005 Educator of the Year by the Tennessee Affiliate of the American Society of Interior Designers. In 2003, she was awarded the National Advisor of the Year from the Construction Specifications Institute and Regional Advisor of the Year by the Gulf States Region of Construction Specifications Institute.

At Memphis State University, Reagor earned dual Bachelor degrees (Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Bachelor in Home Economics Education). Reagor received a Master of Science in Housing and Interior Design from Oklahoma State University and later her Ph.D. in Interior Design and Management from Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University.

Dr. Jeanette Stepanske, Associate Professor, Teacher Preparation Academy, came to UTC in fall of 1996 as a member of the faculty.

She began laying the foundations of her career as an elementary teacher in both public and private schools. In 1980, she joined the faculty at Southern University (SU) in Collegedale, Tennessee, where she specialized in multi-grade curriculum, instruction and social studies.

In 1996, Stepanske came to UTC as an associate professor in the Teacher Preparation Academy’s Professional Development Program where she works with pre-service and classroom teachers in urban settings, writes grants, develops presentations, and provides community services with a focus on professional development for urban teachers and pre-service teachers.

Stepanske earned a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education from Andrews University in Berrien Spring, Michigan. She received a Master of Arts in Educational Administration from Ohio State, and a Doctor of Education degree in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.

She has been awarded the Excellence in Teaching Award from SU; Outstanding Social Studies Teacher of the Year from Tennessee Council for the Social Studies; Outstanding Service to the Social Studies Profession from the National Council for the Social Studies, and recognition for grant writing from UTC.

Stepanske serves as chair of the K-12 School Board for the Collegedale School System and Board of Directors for the Tennessee Council for the Social Studies. She is also a member of the K-12 Board of Education for Georgia-Cumberland and the Southern Union Conference, the AAA Board of Education, and the National Council for the Social Studies Early Childhood and Resolutions Committees.

In addition to her participation on the above scholastic boards and committees, Stepanske is on the Board of Trustees for Southern University, and is a member of both the Hampton Creek Book Club and the Ooltewah/Collegedale Garden Club.

Dr. Judith H. Wakim, C.N.E., R.N., joined the UTC faculty in August 1999. She earned her Bachelor of Science in nursing from College of Mount Saint Joseph on-the-Ohio. Wakim then attended Indiana University, where she received both her Master of Science in Nursing Education and her Doctor of Education.

Wakim’s career spans from in-field practices, as charge nurse at Bloomington Hospital and charge nurse and relief supervisor at Obion County General Hospital, to her numerous educational appointments. She has served in various capacities at DePauw University, The University of Tennessee at Martin (UTM), Austin Peay State University (APSU), and Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU).

As an educator in the state of Tennessee for forty years, Wakim has used knowledgeable relationships to plan and implement an associate degree nursing program and an upper division BSN program at UTM, as well as BSN programs at both APSU and MTSU.

Currently, Wakim is working with the School of Nursing faculty in planning a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) degree.

She has been honored as the recipient of The University of Tennessee National Alumni Association Outstanding Teacher Award and the Merit Award for Outstanding Performance from MTSU. She is also the recipient of the Membership Service Award and the Dean Ruth Neil Murray Award for Nursing Education from the Tennessee Nurses Association.

Wakim holds membership in several honor societies, including Kappa Gamma Pi, National Honor Society for Women in Liberal Arts; Sigma Theta Tau International, Honor Society for Nursing; Pi Lambda Theta, National Honor Society for Women in Education; and the National Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi.

photo of retirees
From left: Dr. Judith H. Wakim, Dr. Jeanette Stepanske, Dr. Jane D. Reagor, Dr. Charles H. Lippy


Media Relations Contacts: Email Shawn Ryan or call (423) 425-4363.
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