Daniel P. O'Connor, Ph.D.
Daniel P. O’Connor, Ph.D. is the dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences and professor, health and human performance. He received his Ph.D. in kinesiology from the University of Houston and holds an M.S. in physical therapy from Texas Woman’s University and a B.A. in human performance and health sciences from Rice University.
Dean O’Connor is an accomplished scholar and author whose specializations in interdisciplinary research agenda include evaluating the effectiveness of health-related interventions, explaining individual variation in health outcomes and investigating the effects of physical activity on health and risk factors. He has collaborated in research across many diverse fields and topics, including obesity, health and wellness, public health, kinesiology, exercise science, rehabilitation, movement disorders, physiology and surgery. Dr. O'Connor is the author of "Clinical Pathology for Athletic Trainers: Recognizing Systemic Disease," 3rd ed. (with Thorofare, NJ: Slack Incorporated, paperback 2015).
O’Connor is a native Houstonian, exercise enthusiast and sought-after media expert on fitness. He has been featured in Runner’s World Magazine, and his favorite quote is from Ph.D. adviser and mentor, UH Professor Emeritus Andrew S. “Tony” Jackson: “Get moving!”
O’Connor became dean of CLASS in December 2021.
Executive Administrative Assistant to the Dean
402 Agnes Arnold Hall
Dana M. Green is the executive administrative assistant to the dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. She received a Master of Business Administration from Our Lady of the Lake University and a Bachelor of Science in business from the University of Phoenix. Green has been with the University of Houston since 2008 and has held various senior-level administrative positions within the University, including Donor and Alumni Records, University Advancement, office of international studies and programs and UH Health and academic programs in the Office of the Provost. Prior to joining the University of Houston, she spent seven years as an office administrator in the private and industrial sectors.
Sally Connolly is associate professor of contemporary poetry and an authority on American, British and Irish verse from the modern period to the present day. Connolly previously taught at Wake Forest University and was a visiting fellow at Harvard University. Her main areas of research and teaching include the elegiac tradition, epic, confessional and post-confessional verse, poetic influence / inheritance, queer poetics, prosody and scansion, medical humanities, neoformalist criticism, poetic responses to disaster, epigraphs and allusions, and transatlantic literary relations.
Connolly received her Ph.D. in modern and contemporary poetry from University College London.
A native of St. Albans in the United Kingdom, she has lived in Houston since 2008.
Todd Romero received his B.A. from the University of Colorado at Boulder and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Boston College. An associate professor in the department of history, he researches and teaches classes on early American, Native American, public and food history. Romero is the author of a number of articles and the book, "Making War and Minting Christians: Masculinity, Religion, and Colonialism in Early New England," (University of Massachusetts Press, 2011).
His work has been supported by fellowships or grants from the Newberry Library, the John Nicholas Brown Center for American Civilization at Brown University, the Huntington Library, the American Philosophical Society, Massachusetts Historical Society and the National Endowment for the Humanities. For his teaching, Romero has won the Provost’s Core Teaching Award (2012) and the Ross M. Lence Award for Teaching Excellence in the Humanities (2016).
Susan Scarrow holds a Moores University Professorship in the department of political science. Her teaching and scholarship focus on representation and political participation in parliamentary democracies, including political party development, comparative political finance and the spread of direct democracy. She co-leads the multi-national Political Party Database, an NSF funded endeavor which currently encompasses over 240 parties and over 40 countries. She co-edited "Organizing Political Parties: Representation, Participation
Carla Sharp is a professor of psychology and director of the Developmental Psychopathology Lab and the UH-ADAPT clinic. She received her Ph.D. in developmental psychopathology at the University of Cambridge. In 2004, she moved to the United States to take an appointment as an assistant professor in the Menninger Department of Psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine.
Her published work includes over 250 peer-reviewed publications (H-index 53) and numerous chapters reflecting her interests in the social-cognitive basis of psychiatric problems and attachment-related disorders as well as the application of this work in developing diagnostic tools and interventions in youth. She has co-authored three books: an edited volume with Springer titled, “The Handbook of Borderline Personality Disorder in Children and Adolescents,” an edited volume with Oxford University Press titled “Social Cognition and Developmental Psychopathology” and a book with MIT Press titled, “Midbrain Mutiny: Behavioral Economics and Neuroeconomics of Gambling Addiction as Basic Reward System Disorder." Her work has been continuously funded since 2009 by the NIH and various foundations.
Janie Graham is the executive director for undergraduate programs for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in youth and human services from Salem-Teikyo University where she also earned her certificate in American humanics (now known as Nonprofit Leadership Alliance). She has been with the University of Houston since 1999. Prior to joining the University of Houston, she served as the dean for an all-girls private high school in San Antonio.
Frank Houston is the college information services manager and information security officer for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. He holds a Bachelor of Science in computer information systems from Jones College and a Master of Science in management with a focus on information security from Colorado Technical University. Prior to joining the University of Houston, he served as director of information technology for a major medical management corporation in south Florida.
Amy O'Neal earned her bachelor's degree in history from Texas A&M University and her master's and doctorate in history from the University of Houston. Her research focuses on medieval history, specifically Norman and Anglo-Norman women in 10th-12th century England and France. She teaches history and has worked in UH's department of history and the Women's Studies Program. As director of Assessment and Accreditation Services, O'Neal coordinates assessment initiatives within the College, provides faculty and staff support for the Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) and Institutional Effectiveness Plans (IEPs) and collects and analyzes data for the College.
Director of Alumni Relations
402 Agnes Arnold Hall
Diedra B. Fontaine is the director of alumni relations for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. She received a Master of Business Administration from Texas Southern University and a Bachelor of Business Administration in computer information systems from the University of North Texas. Prior to joining the University of Houston, she served as executive director in the office of development at Prairie View A&M University. She has extensive alumni relations experience and has coordinated alumni outreach initiatives, planned special events and overseen strategic planning. She has held director-level roles in health care, aviation and sales. Fontaine has also served as an adjunct instructor in the Jesse H. Jones School of Business.
LaRahia is the communication director at the University of Houston College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. In this role, she is tasked with establishing a cohesive, compelling brand for the college and increasing its visibility on a local, regional and global scale through event marketing, digital media management and relationship cultivation. In addition to higher education, LaRahia’s academic and professional work explores how social movement organizations use communication to increase visibility, establish legitimacy and obtain resources.
She holds a Bachelor of Arts in communication from St. Edward’s University and a Master of Arts in public relations from the University of Houston.
Kim Howard has served in several development capacities at the University of Houston for 20 years, working at Houston Public Media, Blaffer Art Museum and CLASS. She earned a Master of Public Administration from University of Houston and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from University of Oklahoma.
Executive Director, Business Operations
402 Agnes Arnold Hall
Educational Technology Specialist
Holly Sawyers is the educational technology specialist for the office of educational technology for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a Master of Arts in school counseling from the University of Central Florida. Currently, she is working on a doctoral degree in higher education executive leadership. Prior to joining the University of Houston, she served as the associate director of online programming for Catawba College in North Carolina.
Research Liaison Officer
402 Agnes Arnold Hall
Denise McGuire is the research liaison officer for the College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences. She received her bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and a Master of Business Administration from Texas Southern University. She has been with the University of Houston since 2009, previously serving in the Division of Research. Prior to joining the University of Houston, she worked in various purchasing and procurement roles with Macy's, MD Anderson Cancer Center and Houston Community College.