Chair, Department of Communication and Literature; Professor of Communication
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Dr. Steve Johnson began teaching at Freed-Hardeman University in the Fall of 1975. Initially, Dr. Johnson taught communication and government courses and then moved to direct the intercollegiate debate team. Over the past 36 years, Dr. Johnson has served as a management training coordinator, director of self-study, vice-president of academics and dean of the School of Arts and Humanities. He currently teaches three upper division courses in communication (Mass Media Research, Communication Theories, and Persuasion), a media history course, and the basic Speech Communication course. He occasionally teaches courses on aspects of World War II.
Dr. Johnson is married to Dr. Marie Johnson, and they have two children, Andrew and Sara. They are both married. The Johnsons have three grandchildren.
Dr. Johnson has been involved in international missions since 1981. He has led groups to Scotland, England, New Zealand, South Africa, Belgium, Peru and Haiti. He has taught in semester-long programs three times in Belgium and once in Italy. He and his wife enjoy traveling, especially with university students, and for several years led a campaign to Scotland with the FHU Chorale.
Kay holds B.A. and M.A. degrees in English from Arkansas State University and has taught at Faulkner University, Alabama Council on Human Relations, and at Freed-Hardeman University. As a certified instructor and third-degree black belt, she founded the Freed-Hardeman University Taekwondo Club in 1996. She currently teaches English Composition and Taekwondo.
Becky Cargile holds an associate’s degree from Freed-Hardeman College, a bachelor’s degree from David Lipscomb College, a master’s degree from the University of Mississippi, and a doctorate from the University of Memphis. She has taught in the Department of Communication & Literature since 1993. Dr. Cargile enjoys reading, especially old Gothic novels, going on cruises, and spending time with her grandsons.
Associate Professor of Communication
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Janine Dunlap came to FHU (then FHC) in the Fall of 1983 as a junior transfer student. After attending a highly-regarded public university, she felt at home here, and has ever since. Dr. Dunlap received her degree in Communication/Public Relations in 1985 and came back to teach here in 1988. She has taught and advised the public relations curriculum since coming on the faculty; she has also taught and advised students pursuing Journalism degrees. Dr. Dunlap constantly consults alumni and professionals to ensure that the curriculum is addressing current issues, technology, and skills that professionals in the field need. Each semester, she mentors students in a field lab experience, like an internship, which is a requirement for all PR and Journalism majors. This experience gives students valuable experience that enhances their education and their portfolios, which helps them get jobs after graduation.
John McLaughlin is a graduate of the English program at FHU. He completed his M.A. from LSU and the Ph.D. from the University of Alabama with a focus on American literature and drama. At FHU since 1996, he currently teaches courses in the freshman composition sequence, American literature, Romantic Poetry and Prose, and Renaissance Drama. For many years he has combined his passions for theatre and travel by sponsoring a mostly-annual trip to the Stratford Shakespeare Festival of Canada. Dr. McLaughlin also serves as faculty sponsor for the Tennessee Iota chapter of Alpha Chi national honor society. He and his wife are proud parents of two fine boys.
Instructor in Spanish
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Linda Moran studied behavioral sciences at Freed-Hardeman and Harding University before completing degrees in Spanish at the University of Texas in San Antonio. Prior to joining the FHU faculty in the Fall of 2011, she taught students at the primary, secondary and college levels in Texas and Arkansas. Her courses encompass Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced Spanish Grammar, Latin American Literature, Peninsular Literature, Latin American Civilization, and Latin American Film Studies.
Associate Professor of English
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Margaret Payne graduated from Texas Christian University in Ft. Worth with a degree in English with an emphasis in writing. She then attended the University of Oklahoma where she completed an MA in American and Native American Literature. Before coming to Freed-Hardeman in 1999, she completed a PhD in English—the first to graduate from that program with an emphasis in women writers. Since joining the faculty at FHU, she has taught courses in American and World Literature in the classroom and online, beginning and advanced writing classes, and special topics classed in Utopian Literature and literature of the Native American Renaissance. She is also active in FHU Honors College classes and activities. Payne currently enjoys presenting papers on postmodern and gender issues in literature as well as literature of the American West. She currently serves as an officer of the Tennessee Philological Association.
Instructor in English
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Neil Segars graduated from Freed-Hardeman in 1999 with bachelor’s degrees in English and history. He earned his master’s degree in English from the University of Mississippi in 2003. Neil is especially interested in contemporary literature, African American literary studies, and literary theory. He teaches classes on English composition, American literature, and literary theory.
Assistant Professor of English
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Derrick Spradlin began teaching at Freed-Hardeman University in 2005 after earning degrees from David Lipscomb University (B.A. ’96), Middle Tennessee State University (M.A. ’99), and Auburn University (Ph.D. ’05), where he specialized in early American literature. Dr. Spradlin teaches a wide range of courses, including American Literature I, American Fiction, Literary London, Renaissance Drama, and English Composition I and II. In addition, Dr. Spradlin is the head coach of the men’s and women’s cross country teams; the faculty sponsor of FHU’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the international English honor society; and the faculty sponsor of the student newspaper, The Bell Tower. In these roles, he has traveled extensively domestically and internationally with students. His scholarly articles have appeared in journals such as Early American Literature, Early Modern Literary Studies, and The Explicator, among others.
Rhonda Thompson completed her Bachelor's degree at Auburn University in Montgomery and her Master's degree at the University of Memphis and Union University. She has worked at Freed-Hardeman since 2006. As a Spanish instructor and the Spanish Program Coordinator, Ms. Thompson hopes to instill in her students a love for Spanish and Latin American cultures and language, and to raise awareness of opportunities to teach the Gospel to Spanish speakers. She enjoys traveling in Spanish-speaking countries and learning more about their histories and cultures firsthand. She has worked on numerous evangelistic and medical campaigns in the U.S. as well as Peru, El Salvador, Ecuador, Panama, Spain, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Paraguay. She also enjoys spending time with friends, doing yard work, reading, sewing, teaching Bible classes, making teaching materials - but most of all, spending time with her two sons, their wives, and her grandchildren. Rhonda has also enjoyed accompanying FHU students to Spain for the month-long Spanish Immersion Program.