The University orb resting atop its marble base set on top of a wooden column

Friday, December 13, 2019

Northeastern Illinois University has awarded emeritus status to four retiring faculty members. They will be honored during Commencement on Dec. 15.

Northeastern awards the prestigious status to eligible retiring faculty members upon the recommendation of the department or program, with the concurrence of the dean and the provost, and with the approval of the University president. The new professors emeriti are:

Lorie Annarella
Associate Professor Emerita
Associate Professor Annarella joined the faculty of the Department of Teacher Education in 1995. During her 24 years of service, Dr. Annarella developed courses that infused an “arts in education” approach and used puppetry as an arts vehicle in teaching courses in both undergraduate and graduate education. She published the book “Portraits of Industry,” a study of using painting and art in the classroom, as well as numerous academic articles on the subject. Dr. Annarella also taught the Children’s Theatre Workshop in the Department of Communication, Media and Theatre.

Ana Gil Garcia
Professor Emerita
Professor Gil Garcia joined the faculty of the Department of Literacy, Leadership and Development in 1996. During her 23 years of service, Dr. Gil Garcia taught courses at all levels and received Northeastern’s Faculty Excellence Awards in Teaching, Research and Service. A native of Venezuela, Dr. Gil Garcia is a five-time Fulbright Scholar, a published author and a community leader. She spearheaded a program within the department to train and equip six cohorts of Latino teachers in Chicago Public Schools to become properly endorsed school principals. In support of this initiative, Dr. Gil Garcia co-founded the Illinois Latino Coalition of Education Leaders. Among numerous high-profile awards from outside organizations, she has been recognized as one of the 100 Most Influential Hispanics in the USA, 50 Most Influential Latinos in Chicagoland, 30 Outstanding Visionary Women in Higher Education and as a Distinguished Woman in Education.

Michele Kane
Professor Emerita
Professor Kane joined the faculty of the Department of Special Education in 2007. During her 12 years of service, Dr. Kane taught courses in the Special Education and Counseling departments, and served as coordinator of the Master of Arts in Gifted Education program. She published more than 20 research articles on the topic of gifted and talented education. Dr. Kane served in numerous leadership roles at Northeastern, including on the Faculty Council on Academic Affairs. Externally, she also served as president of the Illinois Association for Gifted Children, served on the board of the Coalition of Schools Educating Mindfully, and served as the network chair for the National Association for Gifted Children.

Mark P. McKernin
Professor Emeritus
Professor McKernin joined the faculty of the Department of Art in 1986. During his 33 years of service, Prof. McKernin taught courses in computer graphics, web development, 2-D and 3-D animation, and multimedia design. He served as department chair for 14 years before moving into the Office of the Provost, where he served as Associate Provost, Interim Vice Provost and, briefly, as Acting Provost. As department chair, Prof. McKernin was integral in earning accreditation from the National Association of Schools of Art and Design and launching a Bachelor of Fine Arts program in Graphic Design. Prof. McKernin’s art has been featured regionally, nationally and internationally in such spaces as the Illinois Art Gallery, Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston and Pompidou Centre in Paris. During his time at Northeastern, Prof. McKernin also served as Chair of the Faculty Senate, Chair of the Faculty Council on Academic Affairs and Chair of the Faculty Advisory Committee on Instructional Technology.