Dalton State Welcomes New Faculty


Dalton State welcomes 14 new faculty members to campus this fall.

Three join the School of Business.

Dr. Heather Bisalski, instructor of business communications, earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration degree in organization and management from Ashford University. She was formerly a part-time faculty member of Dalton State, and is an alumna of the College. She previously served on the faculty at Massey University in New Zealand.

Bob Havarland, an instructor of accounting, has taught part-time at Dalton State. His master’s in business administration is from New Mexico Highlands University, and he is a certified public accountant. Dr. Rosa Opengart, an associate professor of management, has her doctorate in human resources and organizational development from the University of Georgia. She was previously with Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University Worldwide.

Joining the School of Education are Anna Hart and Dr. Andrea Ridley, both lecturers in education. Hart, an alumna of Dalton State, holds her education specialist and master’s degrees in teaching and learning from Nova Southeastern University. She previously taught at Park Creek School in Dalton. Ridley earned her educational doctorate in leadership from Kennesaw State and previously served as an assistant principal at Northwest Elementary School in Chatsworth.

Three new faculty members join the School of Health Professions.

Irma Acevedo, a lecturer in practical nursing, holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Antillean University in Puerto Rico. She served as a nurse at Gordon Hospital. Julia Madaris, who earned her master’s in nursing from Western Governor’s University, is an assistant professor of nursing and previously worked at Hutcheson Medical Center.

Jodi Pack, an assistant professor of social work, is an alumna of Dalton State. She earned her master’s degree in social work from Valdosta State and served as case manager for the Conasauga Drug Court.

The School of Liberal Arts welcomes three new faculty members.

Dr. Catherine Clinard, who earned a doctorate in experimental psychology from the University of Tennessee, joins the faculty as an assistant professor in psychology. She previously served at UT as a teaching assistant. Amy Mendes, a lecturer in communication, was previously at Georgia Highlands. She has her master’s degree in communication studies from West Chester University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Marjorie Yambor, an associate professor of communications, earned her doctorate in mass media from Michigan State University and previously taught at Western Kentucky University.

Joining the School of Science, Technology and Mathematics are Dr. Ali Akdeniz, Dr. John Shim, and Dr. Sandi Xhumari. Akdeniz, an assistant professor in chemistry, earned his doctorate in photochemical sciences from Bowling Green State University, where he was also a teaching assistant. Shim, who earned a doctorate in organic chemistry from the University of Georgia, is a lecturer in chemistry. Xhumari, an assistant professor of mathematics, received his doctorate and master’s degree in mathematics from the University of Connecticut.