Full-time faculty





D. Mark Austin
Associate Professor
852-3569123 Lutz Hall

James. K. Beggan

james.beggan@louisville.edu852-6069128 Lutz Hall

Latrice E. Best
Associate Professor
latrica.best@louisville.edu852-5123435 Strickler Hall
Derrick R. Brooms
Assistant Professor
dr.brooms@louisville.edu852-8026118 Lutz Hall
John A. Busch
Associate Professor
john.busch@louisville.edu852-8015117 Lutz Hall
Robert M. Carini
Associate Professor
bob.carini@louisville.edu852-8030129 Lutz Hall
Karen Christopher
Associate Professor
k.christopher@louisville.edu852-0591Stevenson Hall
Patricia Gagné
gagne@louisville.edu852-8014112 Lutz Hall
Lauren Heberle
Associate Professor
lauren.heberle@louisville.edu852-4749108 Lutz Hall
Robin S. Högnäs
Assistant Professor
robin.hognas@louisville.edu852-8022105 Lutz Hall
Kimberly Kempf-Leonard
Professor, Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences
Andrea Koven
Visiting Lecturer
andrea.koven@louisville.edu852-2089107 Lutz Hall
Gul Marshall
Associate Professor & Director of Graduate Studies
gul.marshall@louisville.edu852-8027126 Lutz Hall
Cynthia Negrey
Professor & Chair
cynthia.negrey@louisville.edu852-8023125 Lutz Hall
Deborah Potter
Assistant Professor
deborah.potter@louisville.edu852-7983104 Lutz Hall
Jon H. Rieger
jhrieger@louisville.edu852-8029127 Lutz Hall
David Roelfs
Assistant Professor
djroel01@louisville.edu852-8038130 Lutz Hall
Ryan Schroeder
Associate Professor
rdschr01@louisville.edu852-8010110 Lutz Hall
Hiromi Taniguchi
Associate Professor
hiromi.taniguchi@louisville.edu852-8005109 Lutz Hall
Wayne M. Usui
Professor Emeritus
Deborah Warnock
Assistant Professor
d.warnock@louisville.edu852-8011111 Lutz Hall

D. Mark Austin, PhD 
Dr. Austin is an associate professor of sociology and also serves on the program faculty of the Urban and Public Affairs PhD program. A good deal of his past and current research has focused on issues related to community and urban sociology examining matters such as perceptions of safety, attitudes about growth and the environment, reactions to crime, and factors related to neighborhood satisfaction. While much of his past research has focused on geographically stable communities, in more recent work he has examined issues related to geographically mobile communities with some of his research dealing with community, historical, and subcultural issues involving motorcyclists in American culture.  This has also lead to an interest in edgework, the sociology of risk-taking.  Additionally, some of his work has combined the use of photography and survey research.

Some of his more recent publications include  "Community in a Mobile Subculture: The World of the Touring Motorcyclist" with Patricia Gagne', "Ritual and Boundary Distinction in a Recreational Community: A Case Study of Motorcycle Rallies and Riders,” and  "Fear of Criminal Victimization on a College Campus:  A Visual and Survey Analysis of Location and Demographic Factors" with former graduate student Nancy Steinmetz.

Areas of research/expertise:  community sociology, urban sociology, fear of crime, edgework   Link to CV

James K. Beggan, PhD  
Dr. Beggan is a professor of sociology. He was born in Buffalo, New York. He attended the State University of New York at Buffalo for his undergraduate work and earned a Ph.D. in psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Over the years, he has taught courses on a wide range of topics including consumer behavior, industrial psychology, gender, human sexuality, quantitative research methods, statistics, and the self and society.

He has published research on the psychology of ownership and the sexual self-concept, including how people overestimate their abilities to resist temptation. His current research interests include the representation of gender in mass media and the social construction of pornography. In these areas, he has published articles on Playboy, feminist-oriented pornography, and women's magazines. He has recently published an article on the way women subvert the inherent sexism in social dancing. He is on the editorial board of the Journal of Psycholology.

He has performed open mic stand-up comedy. He enjoys various types of ballroom dances, especially foxtrot and cha cha. He especially enjoys vintage swing dancing, such as Lindy Hop, and often teaches classes on Lindy Hop and East Coast Swing.

His current research projects involve (1) understanding verbal and non-verbal communication in the context of social dances, (2) the stigma associated with being sexually attractive, and (3) body ornamentation as presented in mass media.

Areas of research/expertise:  gender and sexuality   Link to CV

Latrica E. Best, PhD   
Dr. Best is an assistant professor of sociology and also holds a joint appointment with the Pan-African Studies Department at UofL.  Dr. Best’s expertise is in the area of race and gender differences in population health across the life course.  Her recent work explores the impact of psychosocial factors in late-life chronic disease experience in both the United States and in Ghana. She also conducts research examining possible methodological issues in studying biological markers in social science surveys.  Dr. Best received a BA in biology and sociology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and both an MA and PhD in sociology and demography, with a minor in gerontology, from The Pennsylvania State University.  Prior to her arrival in Louisville, Dr. Best was a National Institute on Aging Postdoctoral Fellow at the Andrus Gerontology Center at the University of Southern California’s Davis School of Gerontology.  She teaches courses in The Black Family, Social Contexts of Aging, and Research Methods.

Areas of research/expertise:  aging and the life course, health, race/ethnicity   Link to CV

Derrick R. Brooms, PhD  
Dr. Brooms is an assistant professor of sociology. He received his Ph.D. from Loyola University Chicago specializing in race relations, identity, representation, and culture and he earned his bachelor’s degree in African and African American Studies from the University of Chicago. He teaches courses on Race in the United States and Social Theory.

Dr. Brooms’ research interests investigate representations of African American identity and culture within the media. Much of this research focuses on museums and explores contemporary exhibits about African American history and culture. In his museum research, he explores issues of racial representation, collective memory, and collective identity; additionally, he investigates the role museum sites and exhibits play in creating and maintaining narratives  of people, places, and events—and counter-narratives as well. Dr. Brooms’ research also focuses on African American men and boys by examining their educational experiences in both secondary and post-secondary institutions. At the secondary level, his work examines the impact of school culture on academic aspirations, resilience, motivation, and sense of self. At the collegiate levels, he investigates the impact of campus climate, mentoring, and involvement on the academic performances and educational experiences of African American men.

Areas of research/expertise:  race/ethnicity, masculinity and identity  Link to CV

John A. Busch, PhD   
Dr. Busch is as an associate professor of sociology and has investigated general systems theory and sociocybernetics as a philosophical basis for sociological theory. Upon that systems framework he is engaged in developing theoretical approaches to the understanding of social systems in general. This has necessitated investigations into the social construction of reality, political economy, inequality, and the reciprocal influences of self and society. In particular these have led to the investigation of authoritarian disposition, cults and the dynamics of religiosity, racial and gender inequality, formal organizations, information societies and globalization, and the overall dynamics of inequality in the U.S. as an outlier among all post-industrial nations.

Areas of research/expertise:  theoretical sociology, political economy  Link to CV

Robert M. Carini, PhD   
Dr. Carini is an associate professor of sociology, and his research examines the sociologies of leisure, sport, family, and education.  He is collaborating on several projects that theorize how individuals are socialized into different leisure activities, and how they are, in turn, socialized by their participation.  In particular, he is considering how gender shapes leisure/sport participation.  He is also interested in the various roles that leisure plays in family life.  Dr. Carini was co-recipient of the American Sociological Association’s 2007 Outstanding Publication Award (Section on Aging and the Life Course) for “Advancing Age, Advantaged Youth: Parental Age and the Transmission of Resources to Youths.”  His articles have appeared in Social Forces, Harvard Educational Review, International Review for the Sociology of Sport, Phi Delta Kappan, Research in Higher Education, and The Journal of Higher Education.  Finally, he teaches undergraduate methods and statistics courses, sociology of leisure, sociology of family, and our doctoral statistics course.

Areas of research/expertise:  leisure, sport, family, education  Link to CV

Karen Christopher, PhD   
Dr. Christopher is an associate professor of sociology and has a joint appointment with the women's and gender studies department at UofL. She received her PhD in sociology from University of Arizona in 2000. Her articles and book chapters explore the intersections of gender, race and class in the family, labor market, and welfare state.

Dr. Christopher is in the final stages of a comparative research project on U.S. and Canadian mothers with young children; articles from this project appear in Gender & Society and Advances in Gender Research. Another research project explores parenthood in academia.

Areas of research/expertise:  gender/welfare state; gender, race, and labor markets; motherhood  Link to CV

Patricia Gagné, PhD   
Dr. Gagné is an associate professor of sociology.  Her research focuses on gender and includes numerous articles on intimate partner violence, transgenderism, women and body work, and the personal and social benefits women derive from serious edgework leisure.  She teaches undergraduate and graduate level theory courses, graduate qualitative methods, and a graduate course on gender and sexuality.  She lives on a small farm outside Louisville where she keeps and boards horses.

Areas of research/expertise:  gender, social theory  Link to CV

Lauren Heberle, PhD  
Dr. Heberle is an assistant professor in sociology and is also the Director of the Environmental Finance Center and Associate Director of the Center for Environmental Policy and Management. She is the recipient of several grants from EPA, HUD and CDC to provide technical assistance to communities in the areas of Brownfields Redevelopment, Sustainable Community Planning, and Safe Urban Gardening. She currently teaches environmental and social policy courses. Her expertise is in community participation in environmental decision making.  Her areas of research include urban redevelopment, environmental policy, environmental justice, and sustainable development.  She serves as a member of, or expert witness to, a variety of local and federal task forces and committees.

Areas of research/expertise:  urban sociology, environmental sociology  Link to CV

Robin S. Högnäs, PhD
Dr. Högnäs is an assistant professor of sociology who received her Ph.D. from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2005. Prior to joining the faculty in the fall of 2012, she was a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Demography & Ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research is primarily concerned with the causes and consequences of family instability, a growing phenomenon in the United States. Dr. Högnäs is also interested in the links between family and children’s health and health behaviors (particularly childhood obesity) and the role of social networks in the lives of low-income families.

When Dr. Högnäs is not working, she enjoys hanging out with family and friends, exercising, reading, cooking, and all things related to music.

Areas of research/expertise:  family, social demography, social networks  Link to CV


Kimberly Kempf-Leonard, PhD
Dr. Kempf-Leonard serves as the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and more information about her can be found at http://louisville.edu/artsandsciences/about/about-the-dean


Andrea Koven, ABD
Prof. Koven is a visiting lecturer in sociology.

Areas of research/expertise:  race/ethnicity, urban sociology  Link to CV

Gul Marshall, PhD
Dr. Marshall is an associate professor of sociology.  She teaches Sociology of Gender, Social Theory, Gender and Social Movements, Gender in the Middle East, and Women: International Perspective.  Her research interests are in the areas of gender, politics, social movements, and social policy.  Her articles on women’s movements and women’s rights in Turkey have been published in journals, such as Gender & Society and Social Politics, as well as in edited volumes.  Dr. Marshall’s current line of research highlights the significance of transnational feminist activism in influencing gender policies both at national and supranational levels.  She is the author of Shaping Gender Policy in Turkey: Grassroots Women Activists, the European Union, and the Turkish State (2013, SUNY Press).

Areas of research/expertise:  gender, politics, social movements, social policy  Link to CV

Cynthia Negrey, PhD
Cynthia Negrey is professor and chair of the Sociology Department.  She completed a BS in journalism and MA in sociology at Bowling Green State University and a PhD in sociology at Michigan State University.  Her specialty areas are political economy, urban labor markets, and gender.  She has published articles in Feminist Economics; Gender, Place & Culture; International Journal of Urban and Regional Research; Journal of Poverty; Journal of Urban Affairs; Regional Studies; and Urban Affairs Quarterly/Review.  She recently published a new book, Work Time: Conflict, Control, and Change (Cambridge, UK: Polity, 2012) and wrote entries on the eight-hour day and the temporal dimensions and women’s and men’s employment in the new SAGE Encyclopedia on the Sociology of Work (2013).  Dr. Negrey routinely teaches graduate electives in the Sociology of Work and Urban Sociology and a required course entitled Fundamental Assumptions of Sociology in the PhD program.  She also has a formal affiliation with the PhD program in Urban and Public Affairs and teaches UPA 610, Urban Theory.  Dr. Negrey took a two-year leave of absence from the University of Louisville in 1999-2001 during which time she was a study director at the Institute for Women’s Policy Research in Washington, DC.  There she led a team that researched and co-authored a book-length report entitled Working First but Working Poor: The Need for Education and Training Following Welfare Reform.  She has also been a consultant and co-author with colleagues in the Kent School of Social Work on reports and articles on welfare reform in Kentucky.

Areas of research/expertise:  political economy, gender  Link to SELECTED PUBLICATIONS

Deborah Potter, PhD
Dr. Potter is an assistant professor of sociology who has a joint PhD (Sociology; Social Policy) from Brandeis. Although she had received an M.A. earlier in life, she enrolled in her PhD program as a non-traditional student and appreciates the diverse life histories of UofL students. For eight years, including the time she wrote her dissertation, she worked in a non-profit agency as a lead evaluator of state and national mental health programs. Prior to that, for ten years, she was a health research scientist for a health policy research organization. She brings these prior experiences as an applied researcher to her current work as a medical sociologist.

Expanding upon her interest in the "lay-professional” relationships in healthcare, her dissertation work focused on the social contexts which facilitated partnerships between parents of children with serious emotional disorders and mental health professionals as they implemented one state’s reform of children’s mental health services.  In addition to publishing in that area, she has published papers on: the framing of “conduct disorder” in popular and psychological media; the medicalization of behaviors (ADHD in adults); governmentality and biopower in state legislation on pregnant women’s alcohol consumption; the various faces of human growth hormone as a biomedical enhancement; and "non-biomedical" influences on medical decision-making. Dr. Potter currently is writing manuscripts from two qualitative research projects: one investigates the construction of lay-professional identities of mental health "consumer consultants" and the second examines lay participation in "laughter clubs" as a form of alternative health self-care.  She has begun a pilot study that is examining “whole health” in the lives of women who have both a chronic physical health condition (diabetes) and a mental disorder (clinical depression).

She currently is teaching undergraduate courses in the Department on medical sociology, sociology of women’s health, and research methods. In the PhD program, she teaches Program Evaluation and offers independent studies in the sociology of health and illness. Outside of her life as a sociologist, in addition to training her four dogs (an Australian Shepherd mix, a German Shepherd Dog, a Border Collie, and an Aussie-Brittany mix) and competing in dog agility trials, she has interned as a dog trainer and now coaches dog-owners.

Areas of research/expertise:  medical sociology, mental health  Link to CV

Jon H. Rieger, PhD
Dr. Rieger is a professor of sociology.

Areas of research/expertise:  visual sociology, rural sociology  Link to CV

David Roelfs, PhD
Dr. Roelfs is an assistant professor, having joined the department in 2011 after receiving his PhD from Stony Brook University. Dr. Roelfs conducts research in two distinct areas. His organizations research focuses on the diffusion processes associated with enclosed shopping malls and non-enclosed shopping centers and on the economic, ecological, and organizational factors that explain where enclosed malls fail. His social epidemiology research focuses on the complex relationships between various stressful life events, social relationship types, and immigration status on subsequent health and mortality. Dr. Roelfs’ recent publications have appeared in Social Networks, Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Bulletin of Sociological Methodology, Social Science and Medicine, Demography, and Journal of Management Inquiry.

Areas of research/expertise:  statistics, organizations, economic sociology, social epidemiology  Link to CV

Ryan Schroeder, PhD
Dr. Schroeder is an associate professor of sociology, and his research interests include criminal offending throughout the life course, the relationship between drugs and crime, the impact of family structure and processes on adult offending, the processes by which religion and religiosity affect criminal desistance, and the effect of poor physical health on crime. Overall, the aim of Dr. Schroeder's research is to test and develop criminological theory, as well as to promote a better understanding of the ways in which social processes influence criminal offending.

Dr. Schroeder's recent publications have appeared in Criminology, American Journal of Sociology, Deviant Behavior, and American Journal of Public Health. One of his papers, "Emotions and Crime Over the Life Course: A Neo-Meadian Perspective on Criminal Continuity and Change," was awarded the 2009 James F. Short, Jr. Outstanding Article Award by the American Sociological Association section on Crime, Law, and Deviance. His current projects include a theoretical assessment of non-medical prescription drugs use, tracing the relationship between trajectories of childhood parental attachment and adult criminal offending, and an application of criminological theory to the development and termination of civil wars.

When not teaching classes or conducting research, Dr. Schroeder is an avid sports fan, poker enthusiast, and golfer, and enjoys spending time with his wife and children.

Areas of research/expertise:  criminology, victimization  Link to CV

Hiromi Taniguchi, PhD
Dr. Taniguchi is an associate professor of sociology. Her current studies examine intergenerational support exchange between adult children and their parents, and the effects of friends on subjective well-being. She is also interested in cross-national comparisons of the voluntary sector..

Areas of research/expertise:  social demography, voluntary sector research  Link to CV

Wayne M. Usui, PhD  
Dr. Usui is professor emeritus of sociology.  He received his doctorate from the University of California, Riverside in 1977 and retired from UofL in 2012.  During his 35 years in the Sociology Department he taught research methods, statistics, aging, and urban.  He chaired the department in 1991-92 and 1999-2004.  He has co-authored articles with colleagues Thomas J. Keil, Lenora F. Paradis, and M. Cynthia Logsdon, among others.  Their papers have appeared in such diverse outlets as Social Forces, Journal of Gerontology, Journal of Nursing Measurement, Journal of Anxiety Disorders, and American Journal of Orthopsychiatry.  Dr. Usui has been co-investigator on grants from with the National Institute on Aging (with Dr. J. Busch), Eli Lilly Foundation (with Dr. M. Hutti), U.S. Department of Education (with Dr. M. Evans-Andris), National Science Foundation (with Dr. H. Taniguchi and Dr. R. Vogel), and Passport Health Plan (with Dr. M.C. Logsdon).  His current work involves serving as worship leader at his church, keeping involved with six grandchildren, and babysitting for friends whenever possible.

Deborah Warnock, PhD
Warnock is an assistant professor of sociology, and her research examines racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic inequalities in higher education.  She is currently at work on several projects that examine the transition to and from higher education for disadvantaged students, as well as the ways in which socioeconomic status affects student experiences of higher education.  She teaches courses in the sociology of education and statistics.

Areas of research/expertise: education, inequality, social class  Link to CV Link to personal website