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Alumni Recognition

Distinguished Alumni for the English Department 2017

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Neil Van Daslem graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1991, earning a Bachelor of Arts in English literature. He then graduated from the University of Tulsa College of Law in 1994. Since then, Van Daslem has worked as an attorney in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He is the President of his law firm, Taylor, Ryan, Minston & Van Daslem, P.C. He represents clients in civil tort cases, insurance disputes and investigations, civil and criminal appeals and federal criminal cases. He is married to Libby Van Daslem, and they have two sons, Luke and Gabriel. Van Daslem enjoys beekeeping, teaching beekeeping to others and volunteering for Boy Scouts of America.

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Kimberly Geddie graduated from Oklahoma State with a double major in English and political science. The Dallas, Texas, native was active in the Resident Halls Association and the Student Government Association. She was a CAS Top 10 Senior, an Alumni Association Senior of Significance and a member of Homecoming Royalty while at OSU.

Geddie was drawn to service shortly after graduation. She joined Teach For America, working with over 300 high school students as a secondary English teacher in Newark, New Jersey. Before her second year as an educator, Geddie began working for Teach For All. Six years later, Geddie is now director of DREAM Partnerships. She travels the globe to support over 45 international partners as a measurement and evaluation specialist, ensuring the organizations are set up to rigorously evaluate their effectiveness. Geddie continues to carry the Cowboy spirit with her through her inspiring career.

Distinguished Alumnus for the English Department 2016

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Matthew Wynn Sivils graduated from OSU with a M.A. in English in 2002 & a Ph.D. in English in 2006.

He is a Professor & Associate Chair in the English Department at Iowa State University where he teaches a variety of courses on American literature and the environmental humanities. In addition to authoring numerous scholarly articles, he is the author or editor of eight books, most recently an edition of Paul L. Errington's Of Wilderness & Wolves (University of Iowa Press, 2015) and a monograph, American Environmental Fiction, 1782-1847 (Routledge, 2014).

Sivils is the recipient of several honors for his research, including the American Antiquarian Society's Justin G. Schiller Fellowship (2012), the Modern Language Association's Committee on Scholarly Editions Seal (2012), and the Council of Editors of Learned Journals' Best New Journal Award (2010). He is the founding editor of the Routledge book series North American Literature & the Environment, 1600-1900.

Distinguished Alumnus for the English Department 2015

On September 11, 2015, Dilin Liu will be honored at the Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame and Distinguished Alumni Ceremony as the Distinguished Alumnus for the English Department.  

Dilin Liu received a Ph.D. in English from OSU in 1992 and is currently Professor and Coordinator of the Applied Linguistics/TESOL program in the English Department at the University of Alabama. Before his current position, he served as Professor and Director of MATESOL at Oklahoma City University from 1991 to 2006. 

Dilin’s teaching and research focus on English language teaching and linguistics, especially corpus-based description and teaching of English grammar and vocabulary. He has over 50 publications, including three authored books, one edited book, and numerous journal articles and book chapters. His articles have appeared in various leading journals in the field, such as Applied Linguistics, Cognitive Linguistics, ELT Journal, English for Specific Purposes, International Journal of Applied Linguistics, International Journal of Corpus Linguistics, Journal of English Linguistics, Modern Language Journal, Studies in Second Language Acquisition, Research in the Teaching of English, and TESOL Quarterly. His most recent book is Describing and explaining grammar and vocabulary: Key theories and effective practices (published by Routledge, 2014).

Dilin has also been a member of the Editorial Advisory Boards of several journals including The ELT Journal (2001-2004), TESOL Quarterly (2005-2008), and TESOL Journal (since 2009). In addition, he served as the chair of the Applied Linguistics Interest Section of the International TESOL Association (1995-96, 2011-2012) and the President of Oklahoma TESOL Association (1995-1996). Furthermore, he has been invited to give featured, keynote, or plenary speeches at various conferences here in the U.S. and Asia. 

As a dedicated educator, Dilin received the Oklahoma City University Outstanding Faculty Award in 2003 and has been named a Distinguished Teaching Fellow (2013-2016) in the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Alabama.