- Appalachian History
- Appalachian Culture
- Appalachian Literature
- Coal in Appalachia
- Coal Mining Culture
- Interim Director, Undergraduate Research Institute
- Founding Principal, Honors Residential College
- German Studies Association
- American Historical Association
- Ph.D. in American Literature, University of Kentucky
- B.A. in English and History, University of Virginia at Wise
Awards and Honors
Recipient, Joyce Gentry Smoot Award for Outstanding Teaching by a Full-Time Instructor, 2002-2003.
Co-Author, “The Literature of Appalachia.” A Handbook to Appalachia. Knoxville: U of Tennessee P, 2006.
"Alternative Country Movement," "Appalachian Coal Mining and Protest Music," "Images and Icons of Appalachian Landscape and Place," "The Language of Appalachian Coal Miners and Mining." The Encyclopedia of Appalachia. Knoxville: U of Tennessee P, 2006.
- “Co-Author, “Faith In Ourselves, Faith In Our Future.” Roundtable Discussion: A Conversation about Teaching Appalachian Studies. Appalachian Journal, Summer 2002.
- "`Beyond Measure': An Appreciation of Denise Giardina's Storming Heaven and The Unquiet Earth," The Iron Mountain Review 15 (1999).
- "Gurney Norman and James Joyce: Some General and Introductory Connections," Journal of Kentucky Studies, Fall 1995.
- "Harriette Arnow's The Dollmaker: Agrarian Tragedy," Appalachian Journal, Fall 1991.
Mountain Voices: The Socio-Cultural Ramifications of Severe Declines in Coal Mining Employment and Production in the Southwestern Virginia Coalfields, Report No. 98-02, Virginia Center for Coal and Energy Research, August 1998.