Left to right, Dr. Anthony
L. Patti, Dr. Martha Venn and Dr. Martin Slann get to know
each other at a faculty reception in the newly renovation
Macon State College Library just before fall semester.
(Photo: Nick Oza)
New Academic Division Chairs,
Holder of Endowed Chair
Join Macon State College This Fall
Meet three key additions to Macon State's
faculty and learn how their work will help the College
continue to fulfill its mission in Central Georgia.
Dr. Anthony L. Patti
Dr. Anthony Patti is Macon State's new Georgia Eminent Scholar in
Management, a position endowed by the Macon State College Foundation
and the Georgia Eminent Scholars Program. His expertise is a
valuable addition to both the Division of Business and Economics and
the College's Institute for Business and Information Management,
which is based at the Warner Robins Campus.
In addition to a B.S. in electronics engineering technology,
Patti holds an MBA in management from Georgia State University and a
Ph.D. in operations management from the University of Georgia. As a
faculty member at the University of New Orleans, he taught numerous
courses in production and operations management. He has amassed an
extensive list of publications and presentations.
Patti's background and knowledge will be invaluable as Macon
State expands partnerships with Robins Air Force Base and other
industries. He has faced the challenge of integrating Lean
principles into the operations of a large government contractor with
complex manufacturing systems. He has applied “Theory of
Constraints” principles in a major airline's remanufacturing
operations division. Also, he is a private pilot. Most remarkably,
he is building his own airplane in his garage.
“Macon State and the Central Georgia area are fortunate to have
someone with such a relevant combination of skills,” said Mike Hale,
Patti is no stranger to the state. He grew up in southeast Georgia.
After graduating from the DeVRY Institute of Technology in Atlanta,
he worked as an electrical engineer at Scientific-Atlanta, Inc., for
more than ten years.
“My wife, Rose, and I are very excited about moving to the
Macon/Warner Robins area,” Patti said. “MSC has a very promising
future, and I am excited about being a part of it.”
-- Gail Pollock
Dr. Martin W. Slann
Dr. Marty Slann's phone began ringing off the hook within an hour
of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on America.
Along with other terrorism experts, Slann suddenly became a go-to
guy for news organizations, public forums and various groups within
and around Clemson University, where at the time he was chair of the
political science department.
“For about two weeks I barely had time to go home,” said Slann,
the new chair of Macon State College's Division of Social Sciences.
“There were calls from print and electronic media in the region, and
also a lot of question-and-answer sessions with students.
Understandably, from that day forward, many people who had never
paid much attention to the subject of political terrorism wanted to
learn as much as they could.”
Today, Slann continues to research and write about terrorism and
his other areas of expertise.
He left Clemson in 2002 to become director of academic affairs at
Penn State University, Wilkes-Barre Campus, but a desire to return
to the South attracted him to the Macon State job, as did the chance
to add teaching back into the mix of his administrative work. He
recently settled in Macon with his wife, Ruth.
“Macon State has a very talented group of social scientists on
the faculty and I'm happy to be part of it,” he said.
A Chicago native, Slann earned a bachelor's degree in history
from the University of Miami, then added a master of arts in
political science from the University of Connecticut. After joining
Clemson's faculty in 1968, Slann finished his doctorate in political
science at the University of Georgia. He has authored or co-authored
five political science textbooks and written numerous scholarly
Slann hopes to add a counterterrorism track of study to the
College's bachelor's degree in public service, as well as develop a
general course in terrorism and create a model United Nations
“Students graduate and enter a global economic world, no matter
where they end up living,” Slann said. “Internationalizing our
curriculum can help prepare them for that world.”
-- Sheron Smith
Dr. Martha L. Venn
Macon State College's first chair of the new Division of
Education is a noted expert in innovative teaching methods that
education majors must master in order to reach increasingly diverse
populations of schoolchildren.
Dr. Martha L. Venn, most recently the chair of the special
education department at the University of Colorado at Colorado
Springs, joined Macon State's faculty in July to guide the
development of the College's new bachelor's degree in early
“With Macon State developing a new bachelor's degree in education
and creating a new division at the same time, it was vital we find
exactly the right person to lead those efforts,” said Dr. Barbara
Frizzell, vice president for academic affairs and dean of the
faculty. “I'm confident we've found a visionary leader in Dr. Venn.”
Recent federal legislation, such as “No Child Left Behind” and
“Individuals with Disabilities Education Improvement Act,” require
that all children with and without disabilities be educated in the
same environments using the same state performance standards.
Education departments at colleges and universities throughout the
nation are trying to adapt their curriculum to prepare new teachers
to engage the diverse learning styles of schoolchildren.
“Macon State has an opportunity to become a national model
because we are building from the ground up,” Venn said. “I saw this
as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to do something very creative in
A native of Peoria, Ill., Venn holds a Ph.D. in early childhood
special education from the University of Illinois at
Champaign/Urbana; a master of science in education from the
University of Kentucky and a bachelor's degree from Western Illinois
The mother of three grown children, Venn is a former professor at
Valdosta State, which means she already has extensive working
knowledge of Georgia's educational system. Among her research
specialties is how to help teachers-in-training learn to effectively
use instructional technology.
Venn is widely published and has been the primary author of
funded grant proposals totaling nearly $2 million. Most of the
grants have been targeted toward enhancing special education
teaching techniques and the use of technology in classrooms.
“Because I already had relationships with educators throughout
Georgia, I felt I could come to Macon State and hit the ground
running,” Venn said. “It's a dream come true to be here.”
-- Sheron Smith
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