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Retiring professors honored for service to the University

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

  • David Cundiff, Professor and Head of Exercise Science, Health, and Leisure Studies
  • Linda Cundiff, Associate Professor and Head of Human Ecology
  • Tony D’Andrea, Professor of Music and Director of Bands
  • Peter Gerschefski, Professor of Music
  • Peter Pringle, Professor of Communication
  • Gene Van Horn, Professor of Biological and Environmental Sciences
  • Ken Venters, Professor of Criminal Justice
  • Barbara Walton, Professor of Biological and Environmental Sciences
  • Mike Whittle, Professor of Physical Therapy and Cline Chair of Excellence in Rehabilitation Technology

Dr. David E. Cundiff earned his B.S. in Health and Physical Education from Union University. With a concentration in Adult Fitness and Exercise Physiology, he received the M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. Cundiff is a Certified Preventive and Rehabilitative Exercise Program Director and Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine. He is a Charter Fellow of the Association of Worksite Health Promotion and served as national vice president. He joined UTC as Department Head of Exercise Science, Health and Leisure Studies in 1998. With Cundiff’s leadership, the EHLS Department reorganized the curriculum and completed a successful five-year undergraduate THEC program review.

Dr. Linda B. Cundiff earned her B.S. in Health and Physical Education in 1961 from Union University. Her graduate degrees are from the University of Illinois (Master’s-1966) and University of Southern Mississippi (Ed. D. - 1987). Dr. Cundiff, arriving at UTC in 1999, has led the Human Ecology Department in growth from 297 majors to a department with almost 700 majors. She led the initial Foundation of Interior Design for Educational Research (FIDER) accreditation for the Interior Design program; she completed the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) accreditation proposal report assisting the Art Department to gain its full accreditation and assisted with the American Dietetics Association initial on-site accreditation.

Tony D’Andrea, Professor Emeritus of Music, was Director of Bands at UTC from 1982 through 2004. A native of Stratford, Connecticut, D’Andrea holds a B.S. and M.S. in Music Education from the University of Tennessee Knoxville. D’Andrea toured professionally with The Tony Pastor Band, The Billy May Band, The Charlie Spivak Band and various rock/pop stars including Paul Anka, James Brown, Bobby Darin, Buddy Holly, Patti Page, Pat Boone, Glenn Campbell, The Everly Brothers, and Liberace. In the mid-1990s, D’Andrea built the UTC Marching Band to more than 150 students. As its reputation grew, the organization drew students to UTC from across the Southeast. D’Andrea maintains numerous professional affiliations.

Dr. Peter Gerschefski came to UTC in 1971 as Department Head, Cadek Department of Music. In 1973, he was appointed Director of Cadek Conservatory. In 1981, he was awarded an Alumni Distinguished Service Professorship. Gerschefski relinquished the headship in 1988, but continued to serve Cadek Conservatory in one administrative capacity or another until 2002, when he returned to full-time teaching. In Gerschefski’s early years of UTC administration, the number of full-time music faculty more than doubled, while student enrollment continued to climb. In 1978, the department received University approval to offer graduate degrees in music. Cadek Conservatory also continued to grow, achieving full membership status in the National Association of Schools of Music in 1978 and certified membership in the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts in 1986.

Dr. Peter Pringle joined the UTC faculty in 1981 A native of England, he received a B.A. Honors degree in French language and literature from the University of London. He came to the United States in 1964 as a Rotary Foundation Fellow for International Understanding. Subsequently, he completed a master’s degree in journalism and communications at the University of Florida and a Ph.D. in mass communication at Ohio University. His initial appointments at UTC were as coordinator of the communications program and director of radio and television services. In 1984, he was named head of the newly-established Communication Department and remained in that position until 1991. He was named Luther Masingill Professor in 1994. Among his other awards are the Frank Stanton Fellowship of the International Radio and Television Society, the Chattanooga Advertising Federation’s Silver Medal for Professional and Community Service, and the George Washington Honor Medal for Excellence in Public Address presented by Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge.

Dr. Gene Van Horn came to Chattanooga in fall 1971. He graduated from Humboldt State University with a B.A in biology and from the University of California at Berkeley with a Ph.D. in botany. He served on fourteen different committees at UTC, some more than once, and chaired three of them. He was also chairman of the Library and Instructional Support Subcommittee for the SACS Committee. Gene's teaching awards include the UT National Alumni Outstanding Teacher Award, Student Government Association Outstanding Professor (three times), Outstanding Teacher for the College of Arts and Sciences, Who’s Who Among Americ’s Teachers, Mortar Board Distinguished Professor, and being named the Robert L. Wilson Distinguished Teaching Professor.

Dr. Kenneth R. Venters has been an educator with the University for more than 30 years, holding academic positions ranging from Criminal Justice Department Head to the Dean of the School of Human Services. He earned his undergraduate degree in psychology at Manhattan College. Following graduate and post graduate work in criminology and corrections and sociology, he received the M.S. and the Ph.D from Florida State University. As a faculty member of UTC, Venters’ advising and teaching awards included the University of Chattanooga Foundation Distinguished Teaching Professor Award, various community service awards, and volunteer service awards. He served as past president of the Tennessee Criminal Justice Association and the Southern Criminal Justice Association. Venters developed and initiated the B.S. degree in Criminal Justice and the M.S. degree in Criminal Justice.

Dr. Barbara Walton earned her undergraduate degree from Indiana University of Pennsylvania (1962) and both her M.N.S. (1966) and Ph.D. (1970) in zoology from the University of Oklahoma. Her research emphasis was in developmental vertebrate embryology. She was the coordinator of the Environmental Science Program during the1981-82 school year and acting head of the Biological and Environmental Sciences Department during the Fall of 1992. Dr. Walton has been a preprofessional advisor for a large number of students that entered the health fields and has written a health career guide to aid in this process. For over 30 years, she was one of the advisors of Beta Beta Beta Honorary Biological Society. Dr. Walton received the UTNAA Outstanding Teacher Award (2002) and the UTC Advising Award (2004).

Dr. Mike Whittle attended London University. There he received a bachelor’s degree in physiology, and qualified as a doctor at St. George’s Hospital Medical School. After receiving a Master’s degree in biomechanics from the University of Surrey, Whittle was recruited into the Royal Air Force, Institute of Aviation Medicine. He was loaned to NASA to supervise six medical experiments on the Skylab space station. Whittle extended his RAF commission and received the Ph.D. in Space Medicine. Upon leaving the RAF, with the rank of Squadron Leader, Whittle joined the faculty of the University of Oxford. Whittle helped to develop the first fully three-dimensional television/computer gait analysis system, a precursor of the commercial Vicon system now used by the medical community and the movie industry. In 1989, Whittle accepted the position of Cline Chair of Excellence in Rehabilitation Technology at UTC, joining the faculty of the fledgling Physical Therapy Department. Additionally, he taught residents in the orthopaedic and physical medicine programs at Erlanger and Siskin Hospitals. Initially in collaboration with Siskin Hospital, he set up the H. Carey Hanlin Motion Analysis Laboratory, where he assesses patients and conducts research.

April 15, 2005

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