Senate Officer-elects Election 2023
Candidate Statements and Bios

For Chair-Elect

Lori G Eckhardt

Candidate Statement

I am honored to be considered for Chair-Elect of the Auburn University Faculty Senate. I value service and believe it is important to give back to the community that continues to inspire me and my career. My position at Auburn University has evolved from that of a non-tenure-track research faculty member to a tenure-track faculty research and teaching appointment. During this time, I have served on a multitude of college and university committees. These experiences have allowed me to build many relationships across the university and have also prepared me to represent the diversity of faculty that exist at Auburn University. If elected, I would continue to advocate for and support our strong commitment to transparent and open dialogue, embracing a variety of viewpoints, and building trust between the faculty and administration. Additionally, if elected, I would:

I have served the campus in many ways, and I value shared governance in shaping the direction of the campus and policies affecting faculty, staff, and students. If elected, I promise to serve you to the best of my ability. I believe in Auburn and will work diligently with the faculty and administration to keep moving Auburn forward.

Short Bio, focus on College and University Service

Lori G Eckhardt is a professor in the College of Forestry, Wildlife and Environment, and director of the Forest Health Cooperative. Her research, teaching, and outreach focus on forest pathology, forest entomology, insect-disease interactions, and forest health protection. She started her career at Auburn University in 2005 as an Assistant Research Professor, serving 7 years as a non-tenure-track faculty member and 10 years as a tenure-track faculty member. During this time, she served on a multitude of college and university committees, occasionally as chair, which has prepared her for service on the Senate Executive Committee. In the School and then College she served on the Graduate Policy and Procedures Committee from 2008-2017 (chair from 2010-2017), the Research Committee from 2006-2015 and 2021-present, the Scholarship Committee from 2006-2015 (co-chair from 2009-2015), the Forest Ecology Preserve Steering Committee from 2007-2008 and the Seminar Committee from 2005-2010 (chair from 2010-2020).  Her University level service began in her second year at Auburn on the Graduate School Fellowship Committee (2006-2009). She has also served on the Senate Graduate Council Committee (2008-2011, 2020-2023), the Undergraduate Research and Creative Scholarship Committee (2009-2012), the Women in Science and Engineering Institute Steering Committee (2009-present; chair from 2017-present), the Energy and Environment Task Force (2010-2013), the Senate Faculty Research Committee (2011-2012), the Council for Energy Environment Economic Research (2012-2014), the Budget Committee (2013-2015), the Faculty Handbook Review Committee (2019-2022), the Commission on Gender Equity Committee (2020-2022), the Administrator Review Committee (2020-2023), Faculty Dismissal Hearing Committee (2020-2023) and the Women’s Initiative and Gender Equity Council (2022-present). She was also involved in the “Pathways to Full Professor and Beyond” from 2015-2017.


For Chair-Elect

J. Brian Anderson

Candidate Statement

When I was asked about nomination for Senate chair, I put a great deal of thought into my interest and motivation for serving. I have strong feelings about shared governance. To share in governance, you must participatein governance. By definition, a senate is a legislative body.
I’ve been the senator for my department since my election in 2018. I have served on the Rules Committee from 2019–2021 and currently co-chair an ad hoc committee on Faculty Harassment. Like many of you, I’ve been a senator through a challenging period at Auburn, seeing three university presidents and a global pandemic in a short period of time.
I am a professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering with thirteen years of service on the faculty at Auburn after seven and one-half years at a previous institution. Being from the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering, I have an established working relationship with President Roberts, and would look forward to working with him in this new role.
Historically, exchange between administrators and faculty represents a significant portion of the minutes allotted for senate meetings. It’s important to manage that exchange constructively in the best interest of shared governance, while respecting free speech. There are existing and quickly emerging issues affecting faculty where the Senate needs to speak and legislate. The Senate should strike a balance between in person and virtual and must shake off recent history and continue to move forward constructively and collaboratively – in the spirit of shared governance.

Particular issues I want to tackle as part of the leadership are:

As Senate chair, I pledge the following:

Short Bio, focus on College and University Service

My career spans over 21 years of faculty service, most recently at Auburn as Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, effective Fall Semester 2023. My Master of Engineering and Ph.D. degrees in Civil Engineering are from the University of Florida. I earned a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from North Carolina State University and am a North Carolina native where I am also a registered professional civil engineer.

I consider myself an engineer first, and a scientist second. My strength is acquiring resources to develop strategic solutions to engineering problems, and I have been prolific in securing funding from state agencies and those that tend to support applied research. In recent years, I have been a key player on several interdisciplinary teams where my background in instrumentation is an asset. I have also partnered with many faculty to help them make relationships to springboard their careers or extend into new funding areas. As well, I have attracted many talented students into my research program. We have worked shoulder to shoulder in the field and I have challenged them to publish their work.

I am a geo-structural engineer who conducts research within the broad themes of foundation engineering, earth retention, soil properties, pavement geotechincs, infrastructure monitoring, soil erosion, and public policy. My research has generated over $9 million dollars of external funding resulting in the publication of over 40 peer reviewed journal and conference publications and numerous engineering reports.

Since my arrival at Auburn University in 2010, I have carried a heavy slate of courses and credit hours. I have delivered 42 course sections generating 3000 course credit hours from 2010 through 2022. My teaching effectiveness is always at or above the department and college average. My personal teaching goals are simple: prepare engineers and support the department mission. I truly believe I have made an impact by producing students who are successful in their engineering careers and advancing the profession. I am seeing more and more of my former students become licensed professional engineers.

Much of my professional service has been with the American Society of Civil Engineers GeoInstitute through the technical committee on Deep Foundations. This opened the door for more than a decade of work where I progressed from secretary all the way to consecutive terms as committee chair. Through the GeoInstitute I have reviewed journal articles and conference papers, taught short courses, and co-chaired international GeoCongresses in 2009 and 2015. In addition, I co-chaired the Second International Conference on the Flat Dilatometer in 2006 in Washington, DC and for many years taught at the Professor’s Driven Pile Institute at Utah State University. Most recently, I organized and taught at the inaugural Insitu Soil Testing Short Course hosted by the Virginia Geo Institute in 2022.

On campus, I have volunteered at the university, college, and department level. I’ve been a senator since 2018, served on Rules for a full term, and am co-chair of an ad hoc committee on external harassment. I recently volunteered for the Master Plan committee. In the Samuel Ginn College or Engineering I am engaged with the Safety Council and served as the Interim Director of the new Advanced Structural Engineering Laboratory from 2021-2022. In my department, I have chaired or served on eight faculty searches since 2015. I have long served on our department leadership advisory council. I represent the Auburn CEE faculty on the Highway Research Center Advisory Committee and am the faculty advisor for Chi Epsilon, the Civil Engineering Honor Society.



For Secretary-Elect

Jung Won Hur

Candidate Statement
I am honored to serve the Auburn community as Auburn University Senate Secretary-Elect (and Secretary). My service is motivated by my commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. During this transition time at Auburn University, I understand the importance of providing all faculty members with the opportunity to share their opinions and concerns about university policy and other matters, including budget, curriculum, faculty development, and faculty welfare. I believe that the Senate officers have a significant responsibility to help faculty get involved in faculty governance and make their voices heard. I am excited about taking on this important responsibility.
As an Auburn Faculty member for over 15 years, I have had the privilege to serve the university and professional organizations in various ways. I was my department’s Senate representative from 2015–2018. I was elected to serve on the Senate Rules Committee from 2017-2019. I also served on Senate Steering Committee (2018-2020), Administrative Review Committee (2018-2021), Auburn University Board of Trustees Student Affairs Committee Faculty Representative (2018-2019), and Senate Nomination Committee (2021). Currently, I am serving on Calendar and Schedules Committee. At the College level, I am currently serving on the College of Education Curriculum Committee, Awards Committee, and Tenure and Promotion Taskforce. At the Professional level, I was elected to be the Vice President of the Korean-American Educational Researchers Association in 2019 and serve the organization as the President in 2020.
I understand that the primary responsibilities of the Senate Secretary are to keep the official minutes of meetings while distributing official calls for meetings and charring Rules Committee. Keeping in mind the required tasks, if elected, I aim to:
- Communicate effectively and promptly to help faculty be informed about various events related to University Senate;
- Promote the university through shared governance;
- Support the mission of Auburn University;
- Advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Short Bio, focus on College and University Service

Jung Won Hur is a Professor of Educational Media at Auburn University College of Education. She earned her doctorate at Indiana University in 2007 and received her M.Ed and B.S. from Seoul National University of Education, South Korea. Before coming to the U.S., she worked as an elementary school teacher in South Korea for six years. Her research interests focus on emerging technology integration into classrooms, K-12 computer science education, diversity and equity in STEM, and global education. She is committed to promoting diversity at all levels. Since 2014, she has provided local teachers and administrators with an opportunity to learn about Korean education systems and cultures by visiting South Korea for 10 days. Under her leadership, a total of 56 K-12 educators visited South Korea, and another group of 8 educators is scheduled to visit South Korea in June this year. Her interest in promoting diversity and equity in the STEM fields encouraged her to work very closely with the computer science faculty at Tuskegee University (TU). In collaboration with TU faculty, she is currently involved in two NSF grant projects promoting interest and awareness of computer science among minority high school and college students from low-income families.

For Secretary-Elect

Jaena Alabi

Candidate Statement
I am honored to be nominated for Secretary-Elect/Secretary of the University Senate. In my role as a research and instruction librarian, I am focused on information literacy, or the ability to find, access, and use information effectively. This means approaching most situations with a bit of skepticism and asking how information has been generated, for what purpose, and by whom, as well as what information has been preserved and what has not.  Knowing where and how to access various forms of information and using that information to shape decisions or achieve goals is also a part of this information literacy lens.  In viewing shared governance through this lens, it is important to be clear about which discussions are captured and which are not, why certain details are included or excluded, how information from these conversations is communicated to the faculty, and how faculty can use this information to productively engage in institutional processes. As the person responsible for documenting and conveying important information to the faculty at large, the Secretary’s commitment to transparency and clear communication is crucial in shared governance.

Over my 12 years here at Auburn, I have been active on several university committees, including the Teaching Effectiveness Committee, Academic Honesty Committee, and most recently the University Promotion and Tenure Committee. I have enjoyed the opportunity each of these committees has provided to meet colleagues across campus, be exposed to diverse perspectives and ways of thinking through issues, and gain a better understanding of how the different units of the university work together.  I would welcome the opportunity to learn more about the university’s operations that the role of Secretary-Elect/Secretary would bring, while contributing to the shared governance work of the Senate.  I would strive to be as transparent as possible and committed to clear, concise communication that would enable faculty across campus to remain informed and to meaningfully participate in the shared governance process. 

Short Bio, focus on College and University Service

Jaena Alabi, MA, MLIS is a Professor and librarian for English, Psychological Sciences, and African American and Africana Studies at Auburn University’s Ralph Brown Draughon Library.  Prior to joining Auburn in 2011, she served as the English librarian at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.  Jaena is a 2006 graduate of the University of Alabama’s School of Library and Information Studies and holds a Master of Arts in English, also from the University of Alabama.  In addition to serving as a Research and Instruction Services librarian, Jaena is the Coordinator of the RBD Help Desk, where almost 2000 research questions were answered last year.  Her research investigates racial microaggression, or subtle, everyday expressions of racism, specifically as they occur in the library and information science field.  In addition to documenting these experiences, her research explores the possible consequences for the professionals who experience racial microaggressions.  Her scholarship has been published in the Journal of Academic Librarianship and portal: Libraries and the Academy and she has been invited to share her research with librarians at the state, national, and international level.

Professor Alabi’s service to the university began in 2011 with an appointment to the Senate Teaching Effectiveness Committee. In addition to participating in the committee’s ongoing conversations about student evaluations of teaching, she reviewed proposals for the Daniel F. Breeden Grant Program and contributed to the development of the Departmental Award for Excellence in Education. In 2020, she began an appointment to the Academic Honesty Committee, which included facilitating meetings between faculty and students about potential violations of the university’s academic honesty code, as well as serving as a faculty representative in academic honesty hearings. Her service has also included appointments to the Faculty Dismissal Hearing Committee, Graduate Council, Post-tenure Review Committee, and Academic Program Review Committee. In Fall 2022, she began serving on the University Promotion and Tenure Committee.  She has also served for three years as a senior mentor in the Biggio Center’s Colleague Circle mentoring program. In each of these settings, Jaena has sought to be an active, productive contributor, a trait that will serve her well as a member of the Senate Steering Committee.