Best wishes to retiring faculty and staff

The VCU School of Education extends best wishes to faculty and staff who retired from our Ram family during the spring 2018 semester. Congratulations to all and thank you for your years of service and inspiration!

Headshot of Kathleen Cauley, Ph.D.

Kathleen M. Cauley, Ph.D.

Dr. Kathleen M. Cauley
Associate Professor
Foundations of Education

Dr. Cauley retired after 33 years with the school. She taught a range of courses, including EDUS 301 Human Development and Learning for pre-service teachers, EDUS 620 Human Development and Education and EDUS 720 Seminar in Cognition and School Learning for doctoral students. She welcomed working with doctoral students on projects related to pre-service teaching and college student success.

Headshot of Leila Christenbury, Ed.D.

Leila Christenbury, Ed.D.

Dr. Leila Christenbury
Commonwealth Professor of English Education
Teaching and Learning

Dr. Christenbury served the school for 32 years. She authored numerous chapters and articles on the teaching of English as well as 10 books, including Handbook on Adolescent Literacy Research, winner of the National Reading Conference Edward B. Fry Book Award. A past president of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE), she is the recipient of NCTE’s Distinguished Service Award. Dr. Christenbury also served as interim dean of the School of Education.

Headshot of Mary Ellen Huennekens, Ph.D.

Mary Ellen Huennekens, Ph.D.

Dr. Mary Ellen Huennekens
Assistant Professor
Special Education and Disability Policy

Dr. Huennekens joined SOE in 2013. She was coordinator of the Department of Special Education and Disability Policy’s early childhood special education concentration, where she taught, advised students and assisted in the development of curriculum for the ECSE program. She received the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU (CHoR) Spirit of Advocacy Award in 2015.

Headshot of Susan Murdock, Ph.D.

Susan J. Murdock, Ph.D.

Dr. Susan J. Murdock
Program Evaluator
Partnership for People with Disabilities

Dr. Murdock retired from the Partnership for People with Disabilities in April 2018 after almost 14 years at VCU. Sue served as a program evaluator for Partnership projects providing analytic support and technical assistance on program improvement. She was instrumental in developing evaluation plans, including logic models, for several federal grant proposals. In her work at the Partnership, Sue demonstrated incredible attention to detail and was a valued member of project teams.

Headshot of Deborah Speece, Ph.D.

Deborah L. Speece, Ph.D.

Dr. Deborah L. Speece
Associate Dean of Research and Faculty Development
Counseling and Special Education

Dr. Speece came to VCU in 2013. As associate dean of research and faculty development, she promoted the scholarly agenda of the school through education and awareness of research opportunities, individual work with faculty and grant development. Her work was regularly published in leading journals for special education and educational psychology. She is a Fellow of the International Academy of Research on Learning Disabilities.

Headshot of Beth Tolley

Beth Tolley

Beth Tolley
Early Intervention Team Leader, State Part C (Early Intervention) Office
Partnership for People with Disabilities

Ms. Tolley retired in March 2018 after 19 years as an administrator in Virginia's early intervention system, serving infants and toddlers with disabilities and developmental delays, as well as their families. From her experience as a physical therapist, she provided technical assistance to local systems and, for the past six years, served as the early intervention team leader at the State Part C (Early Intervention) Office. She provided leadership for the state's monitoring and supervision system and was passionate about ensuring that the social and emotional needs of young children and their families were met.