2023 TAA Council Elections - Cast Your Vote

Six candidates are running for four open positions on the TAA Council, the association’s governing board. Terms begin July 1, 2023. View the candidate bios and position statements below and then vote by clicking the "Cast Your Vote" button. To be eligible to vote, individuals must be members in good standing. If you are a TAA member and cannot vote electronically, contact Kim Pawlak at [email protected] or (507) 459-1363 to request a paper ballot. The deadline for voting is Friday, March 17.

Candidate Bios & Position Statements

Vice President/President-Elect

Dione Taylor

Dione TaylorPosition Statement

"I have been a Council member since July of 2021 and a TAA member for several years prior to that time. I have also enjoyed current membership of the Committee for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (CDEI) which has provided me an opportunity to work with so many skilled, capable, and devoted co-Council members. They have provided the TAA membership with outstanding resources which can be found on the website.
As a university program director and professor, I am deeply connected to that culture and enjoy the relationships that I have developed over the years. I am also fortunate to be a co-chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Interest Network (DIIN) subcommittee which is one of the Association for Counselor Education and Supervision (ACES) interest networks. ACES is division of the premier organization, American Counseling Association (ACA), and represents the interests of counselors in numerous settings. The DIIN subcommittee, promotes an appreciation of diversity and inclusion in research, teaching, and service. I believe the participants in that subcommittee would benefit by knowing about the service that TAA provides for its members, particularly those related to publishing. I would be pleased to introduce them to the wonderful resources that TAA membership offers.
I recall meeting Dannelle Stevens, and Meggin McIntosh at a TAA conference many years ago. They were extremely helpful by providing insight into the manuscript publication process. I attribute my successful publication of that article to the collegial support I received from each of them. This is an example of the level of expertise available to the TAA community of members. I would like to continue my support of TAA with service as the next Vice President/President-Elect, as this organization continues to invite new and ongoing members of the textbook and academic authors community to join with us for this mutually beneficial and rewarding purpose."


Dr. Dione Taylor is Director of the Pupil Personnel Services, School Counseling program in the School of Education at Point Loma Nazarene University. She supports issues of social justice and racial equity. Her experience as an intern and program participant at the Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication in Portland, Oregon, helped inform her worldview organized around inclusion, professional development, and valuing cultural diversity. 

She conducted research with graduate students around the topic of cultural competence and published the results in an article entitled Developing graduate and undergraduate student cultural sensitivity and emerging competence using the Intercultural Development Inventory®. Additionally, she will be leading a project to engage university staff members in exploration of cultural awareness in September 2023. Dr. Taylor recognizes that one of the first steps in the journey toward cultural competence is to be self-reflective, examine implicit bias, and engage in courageous conversations.

Dr. Taylor is currently completing a manuscript based upon a proprietary document she created for the use by graduate candidates in counseling theory courses.


Brenda Ulrich

Brenda UlrichPosition Statement 

"I have served for the past year four years as Secretary for TAA Council, as well as on TAA's Governance, Executive and Publishing Practices Committees. I would be honored to serve again, and am particularly excited to work with TAA’s new executive director and the Council to help shape the future of TAA as it embarks on a new era in an ever-changing publishing world."


Brenda Ulrich is an intellectual property lawyer with a focus on publishing, higher education, copyright and trademark law. She provides legal advice for clients reviewing and negotiating publishing, co-author, licensing and consulting agreements, as well as on registering and enforcing copyrights and trademarks. Brenda’s clients include authors and publishers, colleges and universities, health care organizations, consumer and retail businesses, and educational, scientific and cultural organizations. Brenda has worked with and represented several TAA authors over the years. She regularly presents on copyright, trademark, publishing and higher education topics for TAA, the Boston Bar Association, the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA) and other entities.


Nicole Dillard

Nicole DillardPosition Statement

"It is my hope to grow in my participation with TAA, which is why I am interested in serving on the Council. Through my participation, I hope to accomplish an increase in sustainability of TAA through member engagement and recruitment efforts as well as through implementing processes and systems to help the Council lead effectively and efficiently.

As a scholar-practitioner who specializes in organizational development, including leadership and training development, I believe that I have tangible skills, expertise and experiences that can support the Council. Within the academy and as a consultant I have facilitated organizations’ capacity to design training and learning programs, fundraise, and increase employee/member recruitment and engagement. Additionally, as was demonstrated with my efforts on the TAA DEI survey analysis team, I can also help TAA effectively assess its goals and member needs. Finally, I have successfully worked with several of the current Council members, have experience serving on advisory and leadership teams and enjoy collaborative decision-making.

In conclusion, I believe that these details, coupled with my commitment to growing and diversifying TAA’s membership would serve in support of the Council’s existing goals and objectives."


Nicole Dillard (she/her/hers) currently serve as an Assistant Professor of Human Resource Development (HRD) within the Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD) department in the College of Education and Human Development (CEHD) at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She also serves as a member of TAA’s Committee on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (CDEI). 

Donna Elkins

Donna ElkinsPosition Statement

"I have fostered a life-long passion for writing. As a tenured Professor of Communication at two different institutions I published journal articles, book chapters, and conference presentations. Even now I am still engaged in learning new avenues of writing, as I recently began writing blog posts for a communication network and started my first academic book project on the resilience of female entrepreneurs. Over the years I have developed writing circles with professors and with graduate students. Writing with new and experienced writers continues to provide encouragement and support for my own writing projects and allows me to support others. I was excited when I found TAA doing exactly that. Attending the TAA Conference and monthly discussion circles I clearly see the value of the organization, especially the encouraging tone and expertise of its members. My hope for being on the Council is to support the organization’s  leadership and members and learn more about how I can continue to serve TAA in the future."


Donna M. Elkins (PhD Communication, University of Kentucky) is Associate Dean of Online Education, Director of the Center for Teaching and Learning, and a tenured Full Professor of Communication, at Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky. Her primary areas of writing and research focus on balancing self-disclosure and privacy when seeking social support in the workplace, socialization processes for organizational newcomers, overcoming professional failures, and ways of building work resilience through communication. She has published about these issues in the context of organizational newcomers and female cancer survivors at work and is now writing a book about female entrepreneurs and their transition from traditional work. Her research has been published in multiple academic journals, book chapters, conference proceedings, and now is regularly featured on a communication network blog.

Fred Kleiner

Fred KleinerPosition Statement

"From 2008 to 2010, I was privileged to serve as TAA Secretary, but I was unable to stand for re-election because of a long-term commitment I made to my university to oversee and teach in study abroad programs in Paris and London each June, making it impossible for me to fulfill my duty as a TAA officer to attend the Council meeting held at the TAA convention each year. Now retired from teaching if not from academic and textbook writing, I am again free to serve, something that I am eager to do given how much my career owes to TAA. I am all the more anxious to resume giving back because recent conversations with several current Council members have convinced me that TAA is at an important inflection point, and I believe that I can make a meaningful contribution to addressing the challenges the organization now faces."


Fred Kleiner is a Professor Emeritus of History of Art & Architecture at Boston University, where he served five terms as department chair and won several teaching awards. He has been a TAA member for 30+ years and the proud winner of one McGuffey and two Texty prizes. Elected to TAA’s Council of Fellows in 2009, he has also been honored by TAA with the Franklin Silverman, Norma Hood, and Ron Pynn Awards. His main textbook is Gardner’s Art through the Ages, the leading art history title, now in its 16th edition. He has also published scholarly monographs and dozens of peer-reviewed articles in the major journals of art history and archaeology in North America and Europe. From 1985 to 1998, Kleiner was editor-in-chief of the American Journal of Archaeology, the flagship journal of the Archaeological Institute of America. His essay on teaching and textbook writing appeared recently in the TAA Blog

Rick Mullins

Rick MullinsPosition Statement

"I am hoping to be re-elected to the TAA Council in order to give back to an organization that has given me much over the last six years. I have experience in professional organization leadership, serving the Cincinnati Local Section of the American Chemical Society (~1,200 members) as Auditor, Secretary, Co-Chair, Chair, Trustee, and now as Councilor to the National ACS where I serve on the Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs. Having only recently completed my first edition organic chemistry textbook, I will bring a unique perspective to the Council where I can hopefully design programming for early career, aspiring textbook authors. My experience as Chair of the Faculty at Xavier and now as Chair of the Department of Chemistry has given me important insights into the broader textbook market, especially as it relates to impressions of non-authoring faculty."


Rick Mullins is a Professor of Chemistry at Xavier University and has recently completed a first edition organic chemistry textbook with Pearson Education. He started at Xavier after earning his Ph.D. in Chemistry from Indiana University in 2004. An award-winning teacher, he was promoted to Associate Professor in 2010 and then to Professor in 2017. He currently serves as Councilor to TAA and as Chair of the Department of Chemistry at Xavier. He has been actively involved in faculty governance at Xavier University, serving as Chair of the Faculty Committee and on the University’s Rank and Tenure Committee. He has held multiple leadership positions in the local and national American Chemical Society, currently serving his third term as Councilor to that organization.


Meet the Current TAA Council