Faculty & Staff

Picture of Dr. Heather Annulis

Heather Annulis, Ph.D.



Heather Annulis, Ph.D., CPLP, is a tenured professor and Director of the Master of Science in Workforce Development executive format program. She also serves as Director of the Training and Development Certificate Program. In 2003, NASA honored Dr. Annulis with the Public Service Group Achievement Award for her work on the National Workforce Development Education and Training Initiative team. In 2002 and 2006, the Southern Growth Policies Board recognized Annulis at the Southern Governor's Association Conference as an Innovator in Workforce Development. She was named one of Mississippi's 2006 Top 40 Under 40 by the Mississippi Business Journal. Most recently, she was named as a 2007 Distinguished Professor of e-Learning for the Southern Miss Gulf Coast. Heather's research interests include developing and implementing competency models, determining return of investment of performance improvement programs, and creating change readiness in organizations. She has presented at regional, national and international conferences on these subjects.

Picture of Dr. Cyndi Gaudet

Cyndi Gaudet, Ph.D.



Cyndi Gaudet, Ph.D., Chair and Professor, directs the Department of Human Capital Development at The University of Southern Mississippi Gulf Coast. As Director of the Jack and Patti Phillips Workplace Learning and Performance Institute (WLPI), Cyndi managed more than $5M in projects in the last decade integrating Phillips ROI Methodology as the accountability framework for each project. Her cutting-edge competency model research received awards from NASA, the Southern Growth Policies Board, and the American Society for Training and Development, New Orleans. One of the high-growth, high technology research initiatives under Dr. Gaudet's direction was identified as a top five finalist for the U.S. Department of Labor's 2005 Recognition of Excellence Award, Educating America's 21st Century Workforce. She has presented professional papers at over 100 regional, national, and international conferences, and her research has been published in journals such as the Performance Improvement Journal, HRD Quarterly, International Journal of Instructional Media, NABTE Review, URISA Journal, the Delta Pi Epsilon Journal, and the Performance Improvement Quarterly. As a scholar-practitioner, Cyndi is recognized as a regional and national expert in helping public and private sector organizations implement a systematic approach for developing human capital. Gaudet has more than ten years experience working with the Phillips ROI Methodology. She holds ROI Certification from the ROI Institute, a B.S. and M.Ed. from Southern Miss and a Ph.D. in Human Resource Education and Workforce Development from Louisiana State University.

Picture of Dr. Dale Lunsford

Dale Lunsford, Ph.D.



Dale L. Lunsford, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, earned a Ph.D. and M.A. in Management Information Systems from Ohio State University, and a B.S.B. in Management Information Systems from Wright State University. As part of his graduate studies, Dr. Lunsford minored in Statistics and Cognitive Psychology. Dr. Lunsford has been on the faculty of The University of Southern Mississippi, the University of Alabama, and High Point University. Prior to his career in higher education, Dr. Lunsford worked for CMHC Systems, Inc., NCR, Inc., and LogTech, Inc. as a systems analyst, technical support specialist, and training system managers and developers; in addition, Dr. Lunsford worked as an independent contractor developing software and supporting users. Dr. Lunsford has conducted research in a variety of areas, including emerging technologies, ethics, Internet information sources, security, and privacy. Dr. Lunsford has published research in several journals, including the Journal of Research in Interactive Marketing, Journal of Information Systems Education, Forensic Examiner, CPA Journal, Journal of Information Systems, Review of Business Information Systems, Teaching Business Ethics, and Journal of Educational Technology Systems.

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Deidra Minor


Deidra Minor serves as Director and Instructor of Applied Technology at The University of Southern Mississippi. She earned a master's degree from The University of Southern Mississippi in Workforce Training and Development. Previously, Deidra worked as a human resources professional in the employment services industry. She currently utilizes her abilities to develop individuals for leadership positions within organizations.

Picture of Dr. Patti Phillips

Patti Phillips, Ph.D.


Research Interests [PDF]

Patti Phillips, Ph.D., President and CEO of the ROI Institute, Inc., serves as a professor of practice and is an internationally recognized author, consultant, and researcher, is, the leading source of ROI evaluation education, research and networking. Dr. Phillips works with corporations, government and academia to broaden the application of ROI evaluation to programs directly influencing the economic growth of communities around the world including South Africa, Singapore, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, Italy, Turkey, France, Germany, and Canada as well as throughout the United States. Patti’s academic accomplishments include a Master of Arts Degree in Public and Private Management from Birmingham Southern and a Ph.D. in International Development from The University of Southern Mississippi.

Picture of Dr. Shannon Campbell

Shannon Campbell, Ph.D.


Shannon Campbell, Ph.D., is the Director of the Trent Lott National Center for Excellence in Economic Development and Entrepreneurship at the University of Southern Mississippi.  She is responsible for all facets of economic development such as administering economic impact studies, assisting with technology transfer efforts, creating strategic partnerships, or connecting business and industry with expertise offered by the university.  

Dr. Campbell holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Engineering from Mississippi State University, a Master of Science degree in Workforce Development and a PhD in International Development from Southern Miss.  Her career has been enriched by receiving Phi Theta Kappa International Honor Society’s 2013 Administrator Excellence Award and Mississippi Business Journal’s 2004 Top 40 under 40

Picture of Dr. Sandra Bernard Dugas

Sandra Bernard Dugas, Ph.D.



Sandra Bernard Dugas, Ph.D., owner of Dynamic Adventures, is a Professional Executive Coach & Facilitator and co-author of The Savvy Manager. Her focus is on workplace leadership and management development. She holds a B.A. in Business Administration from the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and an M.S. in Human Ecology and Ph.D. in Human Resource Education and Workforce Development from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge.



Picture of Dr. Jack Phillips

Jack Phillips, Ph.D.


Jack Phillips, Ph.D., is a world-renowned expert on measurement and evaluation and provides consulting services for Fortune 500 companies and workshops for major conference providers throughout the world. Phillips is the author or editor of more than 30 books and more than 100 articles. His global expertise is based on more than 27 years of corporate experience in five industries (aerospace, textiles, metals, construction materials, and banking) practiced in more than 30 countries. The American Society of Training and Development named Phillips, the recipient of the 2006 Award for Distinguished Contribution to Workplace Learning and Performance. Dr. Phillips has served as training and development manager at two Fortune 500 firms, senior HR officer at two firms, president of a regional federal savings bank, and management professor at a major state university. Phillips has undergraduate degrees in electrical engineering, physics, and mathematics from Southern Polytechnic State University and Oglethorpe University, a master’s degree in decision sciences from Georgia State University, and a Ph.D. in human resource management from the University of Alabama.

Picture of Dr. Dave Vance

Dave Vance, Ph.D.


Dave Vance, Ph.D., President of Manage Learning, LLC, consults with organizations on learning and performance issues with a particular focus on launching corporate universities and designing effective strategies for managing the learning function (i.e. alignment, governance, organization and measurement). Dave is a frequent speaker at learning conferences and association meetings. He also conducts workshops and simulations on managing the learning function. Dave is the former President of Caterpillar University, which he founded in 2001. Dave received his Bachelor of Science degree in political science from M.I.T. in 1974, a Master of Science degree in business administration from Indiana University (South Bend) in 1983, and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Notre Dame in 1988. Dave was named 2006 CLO of the Year by Chief Learning Officer magazine. He was also named 2004 Corporate University Leader of the Year by the International Quality and Productivity Center in its annual CUBIC (Corporate University Best in Class) Awards. Dave’s current research focuses on bringing economic and business rigor to the learning field as well as the development of computer-based simulations to help learning professionals increase their effectiveness and efficiency. His first book, The Business of Learning: How to Manage Corporate Training to Improve Your Bottom Line, was published in October 2010.

Picture of Suzy Robinson

Suzy Robinson


Suzy Robinson serves as the Administrative and Logistics Coordinator for the Jack and Patti Phillips Workplace Learning and Performance Institute (WLPI). Suzy completed her undergraduate degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Management Information Systems (MIS) and a minor in Geography with an emphasis in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) at Southern Miss. Suzy earned the designation of certified Training Professional from the Jack and Patti Phillips WLPI Training and Development Certificate Program. Prior to joining the WLPI, she served as the administrative assistant for Marketing and Public Relations at Southern Miss on the Gulf Park Campus. In the past, Suzy has also supervised a staff of nine caseworkers for a state-funded social services program, which encompassed Harrison and Stone counties. Suzy is a member of the American Society for Training and Development Mississippi Chapter Gulf Coast Lighthouse Unit.