Experts

MSU A&S Experts

These experts from the College of Arts & Sciences can comment on breaking news, ongoing developments and trends in their areas of expertise. If you need help arranging interviews, email the college's Communications team.

Russia-Ukraine War

Stephen Brain

Dr. Stephen Brain is an associate professor in the Department of History and a co-editor of Environmental History, the journal of the American Society for Environmental History and the Forest History Society. His research focuses on Soviet/Russian history, environmental history, and forest history as well as war, power, and international affairs. He is available to comment on the Russian-Ukraine War as well as related topics.

destructive weather

Mike Brown

Dr. Mike Brown is the state climatologist for Mississippi and a professor of meteorology/climatology in the Department of Geosciences. His research interests include severe local storms, public perception of warnings, tornado damage paths, and lightning probabilities at NCAA stadiums. He is available for commentary and analysis on these and related topics.

personality and disorders

Hilary DeShong

Dr. DeShong an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology. Her research focuses on using the five-factor model of general personality to conceptualize, distinguish, and better understand personality disorders and personality constructs like psychopathy and Machiavellianism. She also investigates how personality can influence engagement in adaptive and maladaptive behaviors and thinking styles, such as substance use, suicidal behavior, and rumination. Dr. DeShong is available for…

Nanoscience and Biomaterials

Nick Fitzkee

Dr. Nick Fitzkee is a professor in the Department of Chemistry whose research focuses on using a combination of physical chemistry, molecular biology, modeling, and NMR spectroscopy to understand the relationship between protein structure and function. Currently, our research is centered around three main projects: bacterial biofilms, protein-nanoparticle interactions, and structure and properties of disordered proteins. He is available for comments on these and related topics.

plant diversification

Ryan Folk

Dr. Ryan Folk is an assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences and is the university's herbarium curator. In addition to his research into documenting the origins of plant diversity from evolutionary and ecological perspectives, he leads the state's efforts to digitize herbarium collections across the state in order to make them more accessible to all.  He is available to comment on these and similar topics.

Forensics

Jesse Goliath

Dr. Jesse R. Goliath is an assistant professor of Biological Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology and Middle Eastern Cultures. He is an expert in Forensic Anthropology with extensive forensic casework experience from city, state, and federal agencies. He is Founding Director of the Mississippi Repository for Missing and Unidentified Persons Project and serves as a consulting Forensic Anthropologist for the state of Mississippi.

white privilege and racism

Margaret Hagerman

Dr. Margaret Hagerman is the author of the award-winning book, White Kids: Growing Up with Privilege in a Racially Divided America (NYU Press 2018), and she is a nationally recognized expert on white racial socialization processes. She is available for comments and analysis on how children and youth learn about racism, racial inequality, and racial privilege in their everyday lives.

Theatre, the humanities

Tonya Hays

Tonya Hays is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication teaching acting, playwriting, directing, theatre for young audiences and theatre for change. Her recent Theatre MSU productions include Banner: a Sea Turtle Saga which engaged audience members in the fate of sea life in climate change and challenged them to take action. This production garnered international attention. The production of Anne and Emmett invited social discourse on injustice and genocide through the lives…

mental health and therapy

Michael Nadorff

Dr. Michael Nadorff is a professor of psychology and also directs the clinical psychology PhD program. His research focuses on the association between sleep difficulties, nightmares, and suicidal behavior. He is available for commentary and analysis on these and related topics.

Public Service Announcements

Holli Seitz

Dr. Holli Seitz is an associate professor in the Department of Communication and director of the Message Laboratory at the MSU Social Science Research Center. Seitz's research focuses on health communication, message effects, media effects and health equity. She is an applied communication scientist, using her knowledge to help organizations craft better messages so that audiences will pay better attention.

Space and Stars

Angelle Tanner

Dr. Angelle Tanner is an Associate Professor in the Department of Physics & Astronomy at Mississippi State University. She has been interested in finding habitable planets outside our solar system since she was young. Her research is focused on multiple methods of extrasolar planet detection including using radial velocities, astrometry and direct imaging. She is also involved in research programs devoted to understanding the properties of the stars around which we are looking for planets.