New College of Human Ecology faculty for 2017-2018

New College of Human Ecology faculty for 2017-2018

Introducing several new faculty members starting at the College of Human Ecology during the 2017-2018 academic year.

Tashara M. Leak, PhD, RD, Lois and Mel Tukman Endowed Assistant Professor, Division of Nutritional Science 

Academic focus: Child and adolescent nutrition; childhood obesity prevention and treatment; sociocultural and environmental influences on dietary behaviors; public health nutrition and food policy.

Previous positions: Postdoctoral scholar, University of California, Berkeley, 2015-2017 
Academic background: B.A. Romance Languages (Spanish), University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (2007); M.S. Nutrition, Meredith College (2010); and Ph.D. Nutrition, University of Minnesota, Twin-Cities (2015)

Last book read: "Homegoing" by Yaa Gyasi.

In her own time: "Reading for leisure, indoor cycling, hiking, and trying new restaurants."


Daniel Berry, assistant professor, Division of Nutritional Sciences 

Academic focus: obesity and systemic metabolism, with a primary focus on adipose stem cell function and their niche.  

Previous positions: Postdoctoral Fellow University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas Texas (June 2012-July 2017).

Academic background: B.S., Biology with a concentration in Environmental Science, State University of New York at Cortland (2005); Ph.D., Molecular Nutrition in the Department of Nutrition at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio (2011).

Last book read: "What doesn’t kill us" by Scott Carney.

In his own time: "Playing Guitar, hiking and coffee"


Fatma Baytar, assistant professor of apparel design, Department of Fiber Science and Apparel Design

Academic focus: virtual prototyping, human-computer interaction in apparel product development, 3D body scanning, technology-enabled sustainability.

Previous positions: assistant professor, Iowa State University, 2011-17.

Academic background: B.S., textile engineering, Uludag University, 2000; M.S., textile engineering, Istanbul Technical University, 2003; Ph.D., apparel design, Cornell University, 2011. 

Last book read: "Swim, Little Wombat, Swim!" by Charles Fuge.

In her own time: spending time with my husband and son, gardening, cycling. 


Daniel Casasanto, associate professor of human development, Department of Human Development

Academic Focus: Cognitive diversity: how language, culture and bodily experience shape our brains and minds.

Previous positions: Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Chicago, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, The New School, New York

Academic background: 2005 Ph.D. in Brain & Cognitive Sciences Massachusetts Institute of Technology,1996 G.P.D. in Vocal Performance Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University, 1993 B.A. in English Literature and Vocal Performance Oberlin College and Oberlin Conservatory of Music

Last book read: On the Other Hand, by Howard Kushner

In his own time: Singing, Chasing 3 kids up waterfall trails. 

Division of Nutritional Sciences
Fiber Science & Apparel Design
Human Development