Sociology Faculty

Jennifer Puentes, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Sociology
Office: Ackerman 116
Office phone: 541.962.3819

Jennifer Puentes, Assistant Professor of Sociology, received degrees from Indiana University-Bloomington (M.A. and Ph.D.). Dr. Puentes has been teaching since 2008; classes she teaches include: gender and power, theory, families, inequality and diversity, social psychology, and sociology of food. Her research examines the production of gender, social inequalities, and culture within the context of higher education. Dr. Puentes’ current research explores how gender, class, student peer culture, and the organization of culinary arts programs shape students’ educational experiences and understandings of the culinary field. She has additional interests in the relationship between the intersections of race, class, and gender with culture.

Jennifer Puentes

Bill Grigsby, Ph.D.
Professor of Sociology
Ackerman 202F

Bill Grigsby received graduate degrees from Washington State University (Ph.D. in Sociology) and the University of Idaho (M.S. in Forest Resources), and has been on the EOU faculty since 2002. His interests and research are interdisciplinary, including the study of technology, the environment, media and propaganda, and international development. Dr. Grigsby also coordinates the social welfare concentration. He has published research on land tenure and property rights issues in Africa, gender and international development, technology adoption and distributed knowledge systems in health care (‘telehealth’ networks), and is currently focused on the relationship between democratic institutions and commercial news media. Bill is a co-founder of Haven from Hunger, a student-run, faculty-supervised service learning and community development initiative. Classes he teaches include social problems, social welfare, the environment, international development and gender, media, politics and propaganda, theory, and news. He likes topography, tennis, travel, and time–nature’s way of keeping everything from happening at once (unless it’s finals week).

Bill Grigsby

Nelda Nix-McCray, Ph.D.

Adjunct Online Instructor

Dr. Nelda Nix-McCray is an associate professor of Sociology in the Business, Social Sciences, and Wellness Division at the Community College of Baltimore County, Baltimore, Maryland, where she has taught since 1999. Her M.A. degree in sociology, also from Morgan State, was awarded in 1992. Dr. McCray has over 12 years of demonstrated teaching excellence in the traditional classroom setting and in on-line teaching and is proficient in both Web-CT and Blackboard technology. An active proponent and continuing student herself of the potential of on-line instruction, Dr. McCray joined EOU as an instructor for distance education in 2006, and offers several regular on-line courses at EOU in General Sociology, Inequality and Diversity, Social Welfare, and Social Psychology.

Nelda Nix-McCray

Matt Gougherty, Ph.D.
Office: ACK 115
Senior Instructor II

Matt received his graduate degrees from Indiana University-Bloomington (M.A. and Ph.D.). His teaching and research interests are at the intersections of the sociology of culture, organizations and professions, education, qualitative methods, and theory. Previously he has taught Introduction to Sociology, Social Theory, Sociology of Families, and Culture and Society. Having grown up in Mexico, Germany, and the United States he realizes the importance of cultural diversity and tries to incorporate diverse perspectives in all of his courses. Matt’s current research explores the construction of professionalism in a Masters of Public Affairs (MPA) program. He has previously published on inequality in interactions and organizations, and the influence of race, class, and gender on cultural objects. He has several forthcoming co-authored book chapters related to organizations and professional education. In his free time he enjoys listening to obscure music, volunteering, watching “prestige dramas”, and fermenting and pickling random food.

Matt Gougherty

Teresa Smith-Dixon, LCSW
Adjunct Online Instructor

Teresa teaches the Sociology of Death and Dying. Her interest in Death and Dying dates back over 50 years to the beginnings of the hospice profession, traveling California with friends to hear every talk given by Elizabeth Kubler Ross. She provided Social Work Services and Bereavement Care in Eastern Oregon from 1990 to 2019. Teresa received her MSW from Portland State University, which included a Geriatric Interdisciplinary Fellowship at the Portland VA. She worked as a Medical Social Worker in hospital and home health settings in Portland. She has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Oregon since 1986. She has certifications from the Sacred Art of Living Center (in Bend), Colorado State University and The Center for Loss and Life Transition in Ft Collins, CO. Teresa enjoys hiking with family and friends, traveling the globe, walking and playing with her puppy, cooking with friends, weaving, yoga and meditation. She also volunteers for Arts Center East and Union County Warming Station.

Teresa Smith-Dixon