Associate Professor of Computer Science and Engineering
When I set out to become a professor in 2004, I identified Taylor University specifically as the place that I would like to teach. I did not realize at the time how unlikely it was that I would actually get to work at my first choice (but here I sit). Though I was not a student at Taylor, I grew up in nearby Van Buren and was surrounded by community members involved with Taylor. My brother (Gerald) and sister (Catherine) both attended Taylor and I have much respect for the caliber of education they received.
I received my Ph.D. in Computer Science from Purdue University in December of 2013. I conducted research in operating systems and networking with an emphasis on computer security. My primary Ph.D. advisor was Dr. Eugene H. Spafford, a pioneer in computer security and a member of the National Cyber Security Hall of Fame. My secondary Ph.D. advisor was Dr. Dongyan Xu who is well known for his contributions to computer security as well as systems virtualization. My most recent research is in operating system kernel attacks and mitigation.
Purdue University is a top research institution and I am grateful for the research foundation it has given me. However, I have always been interested in teaching as well as research. In 2013, I joined the department of Computer Science and Software Engineering at Miami University as a visiting faculty member. My first semester at Miami solidified my love of teaching. I immensely enjoy working with students and am passionate about helping them succeed. Working with students gives me more energy than it takes and I would not want to be doing anything else.
In addition to my research and teaching experience, I worked for 10 years in industry. I spent the majority of that time in leadership positions in high-tech organizations. During the internet boom, I created a successful start-up software development company that is still in operation today (SpinWeb). That experience was invaluable. The responsibilities of a small business owner taught me how to lead software development teams, organize employee benefits, develop new products, negotiate numerous business deals, and shovel snow off of the sidewalk. I believe that my industry experience is invaluable for my students. Not only can I convey the technical lessons learned, but, as a former hiring manager, I can help prepare them for the job market.
I am a scientist and a Christian. I do not believe that a scientific worldview is at odds with a Christian worldview. In fact, quite the opposite, I believe that through science I can know God even better! God reveals himself through the Bible and nature (see Psalm 19:1-6 and Romans 1:18-21). Humans interpret both the Bible (theology) and nature (science). If theology and science seem discordant, it is a failure of interpretation. I believe that scientific discoveries are an opportunity to refine our understanding of God and that “all truth is God’s truth.”
“A person who is a good and true Christian should realize that truth belongs to his Lord, wherever it is found, gathering and acknowledging it even in pagan literature” – Saint Augustine of Hippo
Children: Elijah, Jonah, Hannah
▷ Ph.D., Computer Science, Purdue University, 2013
▷ M.S., Computer Science, Ball State University, 2008
▷ BGS, Computer Science and Counseling Psychology, 1999
Church: Gethsemane Episcopal Church, Marion
Hobbies: Espresso, Programming, Fishing, Word Games