Faculty & Staff

Mark Barsoum

Mark Barsoum
Ph.D. University of California, San Diegio

I am a cellular physiologist and neuroscientist, currently specializing in biology education research and the scholarship of teaching and learning. I teach human physiology and the introductory biology sequence, and I also direct the math, science, and economics arms of our Center for Teaching and Learning.

Karen Bernd

Karen Bernd
Ph.D. Princeton University

My classes revolve around the ways that foundational cell biology content allows us to understand and explain human disease and the way that environmental components affect cellular function. Within my courses, from the introductory level through senior honors research, we discuss how we know what we know and perform and analyze experiments focused on pushing the frontiers of scientific knowledge.

Malcolm Campbell

Malcolm Campbell
Ph.D. Johns Hopkins University

My areas of expertise include genomics and effective teaching methods. I teach two courses in genomics; one surveys recently published research findings and the other engages students in genuine research using next generation sequencing methods. My research is in synthetic biology where I have mentored about 150 students.

Verna Case

Verna Case
Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University

As a professor and administrator, I revel in being an advocate for science education at Davidson. I teach courses in reproductive medicine, and in the study and treatment of human disease in Zambia, which is connected to the Davidson in Mwandi program.

Mike Dorcus

Michael Dorcas
Ph.D. Idaho State University

My expertise is the ecology, physiology, and conservation of amphibians and reptiles. I teach courses that require extensive student involvement with the goal of developing students into scientists.

Rachid El Bejjani

Rachid El Bejjani
Ph.D. University of Arizona

I am a geneticist and neuroscientist with a diverse background in cell and molecular biology. I use the microscopic, transparent nematode worm, C. elegans, to study the molecular mechanisms of nervous system degeneration and regeneration.

Karen Hales

Karen Hales
Ph.D. Stanford University

I am a geneticist and cell biologist who uses the fruit fly Drosophila to explore questions of internal shaping of cells. I teach courses in genetics and cell/molecular biology, and I mentor independent research students in my laboratory.

Barbara Lom

Barbara Lom (Chair)
Ph.D. Northwestern University

I teach courses in neuroscience, developmental biology, and microscopy. My research lab examines a variety of questions that all center on understanding how developing vertebrate neurons wire themselves together to form a functional nervous system.

Linda McNally

Linda McNally
M.S. University of North Carolina, Charlotte

I teach courses for non-science majors that focus on human biology, microbiology, and infectious disease.

Chris Paradis

Christopher Paradise
Ph.D. Pennsylvania State University

I am a teacher and ecologist and have been teaching undergraduates and studying insects for more than 20 years. I want my students to understand the process of doing science, to appreciate the main concepts in biology, and to make connections between all different levels of biology. My research projects are in a variety of areas of insect ecology, from the individual to the ecosystem levels.

Patricia Peroni

Patricia Peroni
Ph.D. Duke University

I teach introductory biology, ecology, evolutionary biology, biostatistics and experimental design, dendrology (taxonomy of woody plants), environmental science, and ecology of disease. All courses require independent library and/or laboratory/field projects and are writing intensive.

Shannon Pittman

Shannon Pittman
Ph.D. University of Missouri

I am a National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow in biology, and conduct research associated with my fellowship as well as mentor undergraduate students. I also teach the Biostatistics for Life Scientists course at Davidson.

Jeremiah Putnam

Jeremiah Putnam
Ph.D. Texas A&M

My areas of expertise include anatomical and physiological changes in land transitional organisms, particular heart structure, microanatomy of vertebrates with focus on the four tissues of the vertebrate body (histology), literature studies on the development of evolutionary thought and selected sociological and psychological ramifications, and health professions advising.

Wendy Raymond

Wendy Raymond
Professor of Biology
Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of Faculty
Chambers 1283
704-894-2204
weraymond@davidson.edu

Sophia Sarafova

Sophia Sarafova
Ph.D. Columbia University

I have taught and involved students in original immunology and genetics research at Davidson College since 2006. My goals as a teacher are to foster a scholarly atmosphere of questioning the current knowledge of biology in my classroom and to support the development of every student into a critical, independent thinker and problem solver.

Kevin Smith

Kevin Smith
Ph.D. University of Tennessee

An ecologist by training, I specialize in conservation biology and biodiversity analysis. My research investigates patterns of biodiversity and biodiversity loss, with a particular focus on understanding why species go extinct and the identification of traits that predispose species to extinction.

Mark Stanback

Mark Stanback
Ph.D. University of California, Berkley

As a behavioral ecologist, I bring my fascination with evolutionary biology, animal behavior, and ecology to my students in both classroom and field settings. Although I maintain a research program in Africa, my local research focuses on nest site competition, brood parasitism, nest site selection, and behavioral plasticity in bluebirds, nuthatches, and chickadees.

Heather Ward

Heather Ward
Ph.D. University of California, Los Angeles 

I teach biochemistry as well as a non-majors human biology laboratory course that focuses on integrating lessons in organ systems biology, disease, and modern-day issues in health and medicine. My research interests are in models of human immunity and infectious disease.

Dave Wessner

David Wessner
Ph.D. Harvard University

I teach an introductory biology course and upper level courses in microbiology and HIV/AIDS.  My research involves viral pathogenesis, HIV/AIDS outreach, and education.

Staff

Paul Brantley

Paul Brantley
M.B.A. Boston University

My role at Davidson is to assist faculty in the development and use of technology to enhance instruction and achieve the pedagogical goals of their teaching responsibilities.

Bryan Hauser

Bryan Hauser
Ph.D. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

As the laboratory manager for the upper-level laboratories, I support faculty and students in many areas of study, including genetics, cell and molecular neuroscience, immunology, microbiology and biochemistry, among others.

Jenny Ingraham

Jenny Ingraham
B.P.S. The Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park

I am the administrative assistant for Biology. My responsibilities include coordinating guest speaker details, the department newsletter, maintaining departmental databases, managing the budget, and promoting Biology using social media.

Ben Jepson

Ben Jepson
B.S. University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

I joined the Biology Department in 2015 as the Hales Laboratory technician, responsible for ordering supplies, maintaining our Drosophila stocks, and assisting the student researchers with their individual projects.

Sejiro Littleton

Sejiro Littleton
B.S. Davidson College

I work in Professor Sarafova's immunology lab studying the development of T cells.

Jessica Spillman

Jessica Spillman
M.S. University of Illinois, Springfield

As laboratory manager for Environmental Studies and Biology field and non-majors courses, I order supplies, test lab methods, and set out equipment. I also manage part of the Environmental Studies budget.

Meagan Thomas

Meagan Thomas
M.S. Eastern Illinois University

As the research manager for the Herpetology Lab, I am responsible for managing the day-to-day activities of the Herpetology Lab and its animals, as well as planning, conducting, and analyzing various ongoing research projects.

Chris van Rooyen

Chris Van Rooyen
N4 Diploma, Congella Technical College

I design and build a variety of electronic and mechanical devices for use in classrooms, research labs, and in the field. I regularly assist faculty, staff, and students, training them in proper operation and safety.

Lauren Woods

Lauren Woods
Ph.D. Washington University

I joined Biology in 2014 as a postdoctoral researcher in Professor Kevin Smith's lab. I study how disturbances impact freshwater biodiversity, and whether biodiversity can recover following these disturbances.

Faculty Emeriti

Don Kimmel, Ph.D.
David Grant, Ph.D.
Pam Hay, Ph.D.
John Williamson, Ph.D.