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School of Sport Sciences

Portrait of Gonzalo Bravo

Professional Highlights

  • University of Pittsburgh, Visiting Scholar, Center for Latin American Studies. 2014-2017
  • Federal University of Parana, Curitiba, Brazil. Visiting Scholar, Research Center for Sport, Leisure, and Society. 2016
  • American Kinesiology Association, (AKA). Leadership Institute Fellow’ Class 2020.
  • American Kinesiology Association, (AKA), Board of Directors 2022-2025
  • Outstanding Long-Form Scholarship, WVU Office of the Provost, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2023
Photo of smiling man with glasses and a beard. He's wearing a light-colored shirt, dark tie and dark suit jacket.

Sean Bulger

Associate Dean for Online Education and Technology



AHB 267

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Professional Highlights

  • Received the 2016 Ray O. Duncan Award from the state HPERD association for outstanding service and leadership. 
  • Co-authored more than 70 books, chapters, and journal articles on physical activity promotion and best teaching practices.
  • Collaborated on over $6 million in external funding to support physical activity in school, community, and family settings. 
  • Delivered over 130 presentations at state, regional, and national conferences/conventions. 
Portrait of Ashley Cranney

Ashley Coker-Cranney

Assistant Professor


AHS 205

View Profile: Ashley Coker-Cranney

Professional Highlights

  • Certified Mental Performance Consultant, Association for Applied Sport Psychology
  • Licensed Professional Counselor, West Virginia Board of Examiners for Counseling
Portrait of a man with glasses and a wvu shirt.

Damien Clement

Associate Dean, West Virginia University Honors College



Honors Hall, Room 126D

View Profile: Damien Clement

Professional Highlights

  • Fellow, Association for Applied Sport Psychology
  • West Virginia University (WVU) Foundation Award for Outstanding Teaching, 2015 Dorothy V. Harris Award, Association for Applied Sport Psychology, 2014
  • Outstanding Teacher of the Year Award, WVU College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences, 2013
  • Acting Dean – Honors College, West Virginia University, August 2019 – June 2020
Portrait of Kristen Dieffenbach

Kristen Dieffenbach

Director - Center for Applied Coaching and Sport Sciences



AHB 253

View Profile: Kristen Dieffenbach

Professional Highlights

  • United States Center for Coaching Excellence (USCCE) - Past President (founding)
  • Association of Applied Sport Psychology - Fellow
  • Certified Mental Performance Consultant, Association for Applied Sport Psychology
  • Professional cycling and endurance sport coach - 25+ years
  • National Physical Activity Plan - Sport Steering Committee
Portrait of Eloise

Eloise Elliott

Ware Distinguished Professor


AHB 269

View Profile: Eloise Elliott

Professional Highlights

  • Ware Distinguished Professor in the WVU College of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences since 2009
  • Co-Author of the book, Teaching Children and Adolescents Physical Education (Graham, Elliott, Palmer, 2016) 
  • Recent Honors: Research Fellow, Society of Health and Physical Education (SHAPE) America (2017), Outstanding WVU CPASS Grantsperson Award (2019), Chair, U.S. President’s Council for Fitness, Sport, and Nutrition Science Board (2017) 
Portrait of Jeanette outside with a tree in the background.

Professional Highlights

  • Research focuses on the development of health promotion interventions for youth with neurodevelopmental disabilities
  • Received numerous awards for research impact, including the University of Central Florida Luminary Award & Excellence in Research Award
  • Received over $100,000 in funding for the "Judo for Autism" initiative
  • Postdoctoral training at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
A smiling man with glasses with fitness equipment in the background. He is wearing a light-colored shirt and dark tie.

Professional Highlights

  • Research focus on chronic disease risk reduction using digital and other delivery technologies 
  • Current Google Scholar H-index of 36, Scopus H-index of 26
  • Fellow, Society of Behavioral Medicine
Professional studio portrait of Patrick Hairston. He is smiling and wearing a dark suit jacket, white shirt and striped tie.

Patrick O. Hairston

Teaching Assistant Professor


AHB 215

View Profile: Patrick O. Hairston

Professional Highlights

  • East Jefferson YMCA, Metairie, LA: Board of Governors Member – Board Chair
  • NCAA Accelerating Academic Success Program (AASP) Selection Committee Member
  • Williamson (W.Va.) High School Athletic Hall of Fame Member
Photo of smiling man wearing a dark blue WVU shirt.

Professional Highlights

  • Head Coach of West Virginia Weightlifting and Volunteer (throws) Coach for WVU Track and Field  
  • Coaching Science Coordinator at WVU Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute, Human Performance Innovation Center  
  • West Virginia State Director for the National Strength and Conditioning Association 
Portrait of Cindy Lee

Cindy Lee

Associate Professor


AHB 217

View Profile: Cindy Lee

Professional Highlights

  • Worked as a sports marketer at Octagon Korea
  • Member of the organizing team for the 2001 World Taekwondo Championship
  • Research emphasis on fan behavior and decision-making
Environmental portrait of Gary Lhotsky. He is smiling and wearing a dark blue polo shirt.

Gary J. Lhotsky

Teaching Associate Professor

(304) 293-0861

AHB 242

View Profile: Gary J. Lhotsky

Professional Highlights

  • Eleven years of professional experience in collegiate athletic facility and event management at Florida State University, Florida International University and the University of Miami.
  • Extensive experience planning and hosting NCAA, ACC, Big East, TAAC and FHSA championships.
Smiling man wearing a black Nike jacket.

Peter McGahey

Teaching Assistant Professor


AHB 259

View Profile: Peter McGahey

Professional Highlights

  • Former NCAA Division I and II Women’s Head Coach
  • United State Soccer Federation A Licensed Coach
  • United States Center for Coaching Excellence (USCCE) – Nominating Committee
Portrait of Brent Oja

Brent Oja

Assistant Professor


AHB E 214

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Professional Highlights

  • Research emphasis on sport employee human resource management and development via positive organizational behavior
  • Published in Journal of Sport Management, Sport Management Review and European Sport Management Quarterly
  • Presented research at international and national conferences
Photo of Samantha Ross standing outdoors on campus.

Professional Highlights

  • Research emphasis: The impact of disability on participation in community-based physical activity across the lifespan
  • American Kinesiology Association, National Writing Award 2018
  • Recipient of U.S. Department of Education Graduate Training Grant. OSU Leadership Personnel in Adapted Physical Education (PI: Yun). 2016-2019. 
Portrait of Michael J. Ryan

Michael J. Ryan

Teaching Assistant Professor


AHB 255

View Profile: Michael J. Ryan

Professional Highlights

  • Program Coordinator for Athletic Coaching Education, CPASS 
  • 10 years of undergraduate and graduate teaching experience in Exercise Science and Kinesiology
  • National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) State and Mid-East Sectional Girls Cross Country Coach of the Year
  • 20 years of coaching experience at the Division 1 and high school levels
  • Coached seven WVSSAC State Championship Teams in cross country and track
Portrait of Emi

Emi Tsuda

Assistant Professor


AHB 252

View Profile: Emi Tsuda

Professional Highlights

  • Research emphasis on teachers' content knowledge, motor skills and physical activity engagement, and policy in physical education.
  • Teaches classes in introductory of pedagogy and elementary and early childhood physical education methods.
  • Has conducted 35 international and national presentations.
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Dana Voelker

Director, School of Sport Sciences

Associate Professor


AHB 211

View Profile: Dana Voelker

Professional Highlights

  • Certified Mental Performance Consultant, Association for Applied Sport Psychology
  • 2019 Steelcase Education Active Learning Center Grant
  • 2018 WVU Foundation Award for Outstanding Teachers
  • 2018 Association for Applied Sport Psychology Dorothy V. Harris Memorial Award
Smiling man with a packed stadium in the background.

Justin Wartella

Teaching Assistant Professor


AHB 241

View Profile: Justin Wartella

Professional Highlights

  • Pennsylvania State Athletic Directors Association (PSADA)
  • Former Sport Management Liaison and Executive Council Member
  • Pennsylvania State University (PSU) Summer Study Program
  • Coordinator and Instructor of the Sports Marketing Workshop and Internship
  • Super Bowl XLIX - Event Staff Supervisor
  • 2017 College Football National Championship Game - Event Staff Supervisor
Portrait of Valerie Wayda

Valerie Wayda

Associate Dean for Student Success and Academic Affairs

Associate Professor


AHB 277

View Profile: Valerie Wayda

Professional Highlights

  • North American Society (NAS) of Health, Physical Education, Recreation, Sport and Dance Professionals Fellow
  • National Association for Kinesiology and Physical Education in Higher Education - Vice President (2012)
  • National Association for Sport and Physical Education Board of Directors (2003-2006)
Portrait of Joni Williamson

Joni Williamson

Teaching Assistant Professor


AHS 240

View Profile: Joni Williamson

Professional Highlights

  • Top Ten National Collegiate Athletic Association President’s Award Winner, 2018
  • Staff Member Woman of the Year at Wittenberg University, 2014
  • NCAA/Women Leaders in College Sports Institute for Administrative Advancement, 2013
  • NASC Certified Sports Event Executive, 2010
  • Graduate of the NCAA Dr. Charles Whitcomb Leadership Institute, 2007
Portrait of James Wyant

James Wyant

Associate Director: School of Sport Sciences

Assistant Professor


AHB 212

View Profile: James Wyant

Professional Highlights

  • Teacher of the Year Award, WVU, CPASS award for excellence in teaching for the 2018-2019 academic year. 
  • WV Department of Education Teacher Credentials: Physical Education PreK-Adult, Health Education grades 5-12. 
  • Coordinator of the physical education teacher education student teaching capstone experience. 
Photo of smiling man wearing a blue shirt, striped WVU tie and a dark suit jacket.

Jeremy Yeats

Teaching Associate Professor


AHB 251

View Profile: Jeremy Yeats

Professional Highlights

  • Program Coordinator for Physical Education and Kinesiology, CPASS
  • Research emphases in education policy, the use of music in sport, physical activity breaks, and social justice
  • Seven years experience as a Teaching Assistant Professor or Assistant Professor
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Sam Zizzi

Dr. Pat Fehl Endowed Professor



AHB 206

View Profile: Sam Zizzi

Professional Highlights

  • Twice recognized as Most Outstanding Teacher at WVU CPASS, and has mentored over 30 PhD students through degree completion
  • Serves as the Dr. Pat Fehl Endowed Professor to focus efforts on the health and wellness of WV citizens
  • Published one of the first books on self-awareness in sport, entitled Being Mindful in Sport and Exercise Psychology (2017) with friend and colleague Mark Andersen"
  • Certified Mental Performance Consultant, Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP)