• Honoring some familiar Baylor faces retiring this year

    Headshots of Tommye Lou Davis, Dr. Joel Gregory and Dr. Kenneth Van Treuren

    Every spring, the Baylor Family bids happy retirement to professors and staff who have dedicated their professional lives to the university and its students. It’s always a bittersweet mix — sadness in seeing them go, happiness for a well-deserved next step — but we wish them all well in the next phase of their lives.

    Here, we honor some of the longest-serving and most recognizable professors who are retiring this year — men and women whose faces will be missed, but whose impact will not be forgotten:

    Since arriving at Baylor as a student in 1962, Tommye Lou Davis (BA ’66, MS ’68) has served in countless roles: Latin professor, associate dean, vice president, president’s chief of staff, acting department chair, Kappa Kappa Gamma advisor, and more. She was named a Master Teacher (one of Baylor’s highest honors for faculty) in 1993, and retires after 55 years of full-time service.

    Dr. Joel Gregory (BA ’70, PhD ’83) brought his tremendous oratorical style — “a voice like God’s, only deeper” — to the Truett Seminary faculty in 2005. Pulling from a quarter-century of ministry, Gregory serves as the George W. Truett Endowed Chair of Preaching and Evangelism and director of Truett Seminary’s Kyle Lake Center for Effective Preaching. In 2018, he was named one of the “12 Most Effective Preachers in the English Language” by a poll of 500+ American preaching professors.

    Dr. Maurice Hunt is retiring after 43 years in Baylor’s English department, including more than a decade (1996-2007) as department chair. An expert on Shakespeare, Hunt has written and/or edited multiple volumes (and more than 100 articles) on famed playwright. In 1996, he was honored as Baylor’s Centennial Professor for his work on Shakespeare.

    Dr. Doug Rogers (BSED ’78) returned to his alma mater as a professor in the School of Education in 1987, and has been a vital part of the SOE ever since. From 2004-16 he served as associate dean, and in 2006-07 led the school as interim dean. He was also elected president of the National Association for Professional Development Schools in 2017, and has spent years on a variety of industry boards.

    Another of Baylor’s Master Teachers, Dr. Alden Smith has served Baylor students for 30 years. That includes 15 years as chair or interim chair of the Department of Classics, 16 years as associate dean of the Honors College, and 15 years as director of the University Scholars program. A scholar of Virgil and Augustan poetry, Smith was honored as a Master Teacher in 2004 and as Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year in 2017.

    A widely published specialist in global health, Dr. Lori Spies serves as both associate professor and missions coordinator in Baylor’s Louise Herrington School of Nursing. Over the years, she has facilitated Baylor nursing experiences in countries ranging from China to Ethiopia to Uganda. In 2017-18, a Fulbright Global Scholar Award allowed her to spend more than a year traveling across the globe researching and training nurses on noncommunicable diseases.

    Dr. Kenneth Van Treuren served 10 years as a U.S. Air Force pilot, then taught at the Air Force Academy before coming to Baylor in 1998 as a mechanical engineering professor and associate dean of research. He has been a pioneer at Baylor in sponsoring undergraduate research, and his efforts in the classroom have earned him multiple awards (including being named the Cornelia Marschall Smith Professor of the Year in 2022).

    These aren’t the only Baylor faculty retiring this semester… Others with 25+ years of experience at Baylor include: Dr. Dean Young (MS ’74, MS ’75) (statistical science, 43 years); Carolyn Hulme Turner (BBA ’82, MBA ’83) (business, 41); Dr. Van Dyke Gray (business, 38); Dr. Stephen Gipson (BS ’81) (chemistry, 38); Dr. Kevin Gutzwiller (biology, 38); Denyse Rodgers (libraries, 37); Dr. Michael Beaty (MA ’75) (philosophy, 36); Dr. Carlos Manzanares (chemistry, 35); Marie Level (French, 34); Dr. Charles Davis (business, 33); Dr. Brian Marks (music, 32); Janice Stewart (BA ’71, MS ’72) (CSD, 31); Dr. Clark Baker (journalism 31); Dr. Kathryn Steely (music, 30); Dr. Glenn Miller (HHPR, 30); Dr. Diana Kendall (sociology, 27); and Dr. Joseph White (biology, 25).

    Sic ’em, Baylor retirees!