Dr. Lori A. WolffLori A. Wolff, Ph.D., J.D.

Director and Professor of Leadership & Counselor Education

Lori A. Wolff is the Director of the Dr. Maxine Harper Center for Educational Research and Evaluation and Professor of Leadership & Counselor Education. Her teaching emphases include higher education and statistics/research. She received her J.D. and Ph.D. from Saint Louis University and master’s and bachelor’s degrees from Creighton University. Dr. Wolff previously served as coordinator of the university’s higher education program, director of assessment for the School of Education, associate dean of students, and as an institutional research associate. She has also served as an administrator or faculty member at William Penn University, Drury University, and Saint Louis University, and was a judicial law clerk for the Missouri Court of Appeals.

Contact info: 662-915-5791 or

Joey RutherfordJoey Rutherford

Project Manager

Joey Rutherford is the Project Manger of the Dr. Maxine Harper Center for Educational Research and Evaluation. He began his career at CERE in 2006 as a research associate before becoming project coordinator. In September of 2013, he was named Project Manager. In 2006, he received his B.A. in History and Philosophy from the University of Mississippi. He is also a graduate of the university’s Management and Administrative Seminars for Human Resources Program (MASH) and the Research Administration and Management Program (RAMP). Currently, he is pursuing a Master of Arts in Higher Education/Student Affairs part-time while working for the center.

Contact info: 662-915-7021 or

Megan BryantMegan Bryant

CERE EPSCoR Consultant

Megan Bryant is from Oxford, MS. She has worked at CERE since 2010 as a consultant. She is responsible for tracking over 350 EPSCoR students as they pursue their degree and enter into their chosen career. She also is responsible for conducting focus groups for various EPSCoR activities and programs. She is currently pursuing a degree in nursing.

Sara LeathermanSarah Leatherman

Graduate Assistant

Sarah Leatherman is from Grenada, MS. She received her Bachelor’s of Accountancy from the University of Mississippi in May of 2014. Sarah is currently working on her master’s of Taxation while working at CERE. Sarah joined the center in August 2014.

Elizabeth FowlkesElizabeth Fowlkes

Graduate Assistant

Elizabeth Fowlkes is a native of Oxford and a recent graduate of Auburn University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications and a minor in Psychology. She is currently pursuing a Master of Education in School Counseling at the University of Mississippi. Elizabeth joined the staff in August 2014.

Harsh KandoiHarsh Kandoi

Graduate Assistant

Harsh Kandoi is a Master of Accountancy Student. He received his Bachelor of Accountancy from the Patterson School of Accountancy from the University of Mississippi. A native of Kathmandu, Nepal, he worked for CERE during the Summer of 2014 before becoming a Graduate Assistant in August 2014.

Dr. Marie BarnardMarie Barnard, Ph.D.

Visiting Assistant Professor of Educational Research

Marie Barnard is a Visiting Assistant Professor of Educational Research. She received her M.S. in Epidemiology from the University of Tennessee and Ph.D. in Pharmacy Administration from the University of Mississippi. Dr. Barnard has extensive research experience ranging from community evaluation projects to clinical trials. She has previously served as director of assessment for the School of Applied Sciences and held multiple academic administrative posts. Her expertise is in the areas of research methodology, program evaluation, public health, and interpersonal violence.

Contact info: 662-915-1946 or

Dr. Mark HsuHsien-Yuan (Mark) Hsu, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Department of Leadership and Counselor Education

Hsien-Yuan Hsu received his Ph.D. in Educational Research, Measurement, and Statistics in December 2009 from Texan A&M University. His research interests include multilevel modeling, structure equation modeling, longitudinal data analysis, validation of measurement, and large-scale data analysis.

Contact info: 662-915-4995 or