Staff & Scholars

The Institute for Community and Economic Engagement (ICEE), in the Office of Research and Engagement (ORE) at UNCG, is dedicated to nurturing this commitment through increasing opportunities for awareness, communication, and collaboration among individuals and offices university- and community-wide.

If you are interested in finding an individual, group, or resource within the university or community for a collaborative project, please contact us!


Emily M. Janke, PhD (she|her|hers)


Emily M. Janke, Ph.D. is director of the Institute for Community and Economic Engagement (ICEE) and an associate professor in the Peace and Conflict Studies department. As the Director of ICEE, Emily leads and supports initiatives that encourage, support, elevate, and amplify faculty, staff, student, and community colleague community-engaged teaching, learning, research, creative activity, and service in ways that promote the strategic goals of the university, address pressing issues in the Piedmont Triad and serve the public good of communities across the state, nation, and world. An important aspect of this role is connecting and convening community-engaged scholars within and beyond the university to focus on community-identified priorities through partnership. Emily’s scholar-administrative work addresses multiple aspects of community engagement focused on community-university partnerships, and institutional culture and change strategies. In particular, she focuses on tracking and measuring community engagement and public service within and across institutions of higher education; the recognition of community-engaged scholarship in reappointment, promotion and tenure policies; the role of conflict management and transformation in community-university partnerships; institutional support for community engagement; innovations in scholarly communications; and reciprocity, collaborative communication, and restorative practices as aspects of high quality, ethical community engagement. Along with Barbara Holland and Kristin Medlin, Emily is an author of Collaboratory®, a publicly searchable, online database (licensed to TreeTop Commons, LLC) that shares an institutional story about who, what, where, with whom, and to what ends community-university partners are working towards community-identified priorities for shared learning and mutual benefits.

Contact Emily at (336) 256-2578 or

Sonalini Sapra, PhD (she|her|hers)

Assistant Director

Sonalini joined ICEE from Guilford College where she served as the Assistant Director for the Center for Principled Problem Solving and Excellence in Teaching (CPPSET). Her work at Guilford centered on supporting and promoting community-engaged teaching, research, and service opportunities for faculty, staff, and students. She received her Ph.D. in Political Science from Vanderbilt University and has previously taught at Kenyon College, Saint Mary’s College, Saint Martin’s University, and Guilford College. Before returning to graduate school, she worked at a non-governmental labor rights organization in New Delhi doing research and advocacy on the impact that trade liberalization was having on India’s informal workers. She has also worked with several community organizations in the United States and currently serves as an advisory board member and research fellow at the Center for New North Carolinians (CNNC). Her research and teaching interests are in Civic Participation, Transnational Feminisms, Environmental Justice, Forced Migration, Dalit Studies, Social Movements, and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. She is currently working on a collaborative research project on the liberatory potential of community-led ethical review boards in India. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring Greensboro, cooking, and being a parent to her wonderfully wild and stubborn 5-year old daughter.

Contact Sonalini at

Erica Wrencher  (she|her|hers)

Graduate Assistant

Erica Wrencher is a public educator, speaker, vocalist, and activist working with young folx, churches, and neighborhoods to build beloved communities. Her teaching and faith-rooted community leadership spans urban and rural contexts in North Carolina and Chicago. Erica holds a Bachelor of Arts in History, a Master of Arts in Teaching, and she is currently pursuing a PhD in Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations. She is active as an organizer for racial equity and justice and considers herself a human connection educator. Erica is committed to speaking from her context as a Black woman who is rooted in history and truth. She enjoys singing, eating good food and drinking good wine with her community and family. Erica is married to her best friend Brandon and they are the parents of two sons, Phillip and Morris.

Contact Erica at

Senior Scholars

ICEE benefits from nationally and internationally recognized senior scholars who contribute to the intellectual and practical advancement of community engagement at UNCG and beyond.

Barbara Holland, PhD

HollandBarbara A. Holland serves as a Senior Scholar in the Institute for Community & Economic Engagement at UNCG. In this role, Barbara advises academic and institutional leadership on academic culture change and the changing nature of the academy, facilitates workshops on documenting and evaluating non-traditional forms of scholarship for promotion and tenure, and assists UNCG in building its identity and reputation as a community-engaged institution. She was most recently the Director of Academic Initiatives in Social Inclusion for the University of Sydney in Australia. In this role she led the University in the development of community partnerships and teaching/research strategies to enhance social inclusion in the context of Australia’s oldest research university. Previously, she served three years as Pro Vice-Chancellor Engagement at University of Western Sydney where she created and implemented the University’s first strategic plan for engaged learning and research activities. Central to the plan is the UWS Schools Engagement agenda which in 2009 involved nearly 11,000 school students in academic enrichment, tutoring, and mentoring activities. The engagement plan also focused on small business economic development, cultural understanding, and environmental sustainability. Before 2007, Barbara held national leadership roles for community engagement in the United States including the directorship of the federally-funded National ServiceLearning Clearinghouse (2002-09), and an appointment to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development where she managed large grant programs for university-community partnerships (2000-2002). Earlier in her career, she held senior academic and administrative roles at Portland State University and Northern Kentucky University where she contributed to major changes in curriculum and organizational culture.

Patti H. Clayton PhD

patti_headshotPatti H. Clayton, Ph.D., is an independent consultant and scholar who serves as the Senior Scholar in the Office of Research and Engagement to help facilitate and advance conversations and plans related to UNCG’s excellence in community engagement. Patti is a Senior Scholar with the Center for Service and Learning at Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), a Visiting Scholar with the Staley School of Leadership Studies at Kansas State University, and a Visiting Fellow with the New England Resource Center for Higher Education (NERCHE). She has served as a consultant with over 50 schools, universities, and higher education organizations. She was founding Director of the Center for Excellence in Curricular Engagement at NC State University and previously served as a Faculty Fellow with National Campus Compact’s Project on Integrating Service with Academic Study. Patti has over ten years of experience as a practitioner-scholar in community-engaged teaching and learning, including teaching with service-learning in a variety of fields, leading a multi-faceted scholarship agenda, supporting institutionalization efforts and Carnegie Community Engagement application processes, guiding discipline-based and multi-disciplinary faculty learning communities, and facilitating engaged graduate and undergraduate education initiatives as well as a range of intra- and inter-institutional collaborations. Her work focuses on building the capacity of individuals, units, institutions, and the field as a whole for scholarly community-engaged teaching and learning. Patti received her Ph.D. and M.S. from the Curriculum in Ecology at UNC-Chapel Hill and holds undergraduate degrees in English, Biology, and Multidisciplinary Studies / Environmental Studies from NC State University.

Visiting Scholars

ICEE collaborates with visiting scholars to enhance the resources for community engagement at UNCG. These scholars bring unique perspectives and expertise to support the growth and development of ICEE’s mission.

Lisa Keyne, PhD

Lisa Keyne serves at TreeTop Commons, LLC, as the Chief Strategy Officer for Keyne_HeadshotCollaboratory, introducing the cloud-based software solution to higher education institutions interested in comprehensively tracking their community engagement and public service activities, and working to help them strengthen their institutional mission and strategy related to community engagement.  Lisa’s experience in higher education includes working as the Executive Director of North Carolina Campus Compact, housed on the Elon University campus, where she was a member of the Council on Civic Engagement. As Executive Director she helped support and build community engagement at over 50 diverse institutions, and was active in national Campus Compact.

Lisa was Vice Provost and Professor of Education at Concordia University, Portland, OR; and Assistant Professor and program director at Concordia University in Seward, NE.  Now living in Vancouver, WA, Lisa remains a member of the editorial team for Partnerships: A Journal for Service-Learning and Civic Engagement, and is a member of the Forum @the Library committee for the Ft. Vancouver Regional Library. She has served as the Chair of the Education Subcommittee for the International Lutheran Society of Wittenberg; as a Commissioner on the North Carolina Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service; and as member of the faculty development team for the Concordia University System. Lisa earned her Ph.D. in higher and postsecondary education from the University of Southern California; a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Alabama in Birmingham; a Bachelor of Arts from Concordia University, St. Paul, MN; and a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University.

Kelly Hannum, PhD

Hannum_formalKelly M. Hannum serves as a Visiting Scholar in the Institute for Community & Economic Engagement at UNCG. In this role, Kelly advises on issues related to research and evaluation projects focused on community-engaged activities. She was most recently the Director, Global Research Insights at the Center for Creative Leadership where she worked for over two decades. In 2014, she founded Aligned Impact LLC which provides evaluation and research services, and is particularly focused on complex, collaborative projects. She is the author of numerous books including Leading Across Differences (2010) and The Handbook of Leadership Development Evaluation (2008) as well as scholarly and pracitioner articles. She has taught courses around the world at institutions such as the IESEG School of Management in France and the University of Melbourne’s Center for Program Evaluation. Kelly holds a Ph.D. in Educational Research, Measurement, and Evaluation and has won numerous awards for her work, including the American Evaluation Association’s Marcia Guttentag Award.

Kristin Medlin, MPA, MS

Kristin Medlin is the Director of Research at HandsOn Connect Cloud Solutions, where she oversees research efforts to support, promote, and enhance the field of study related to community engagement and socially effective impact across all sectors. She is a co-designer of the Collaboratory (with Janke and Holland) and previously served as the ICEE Communications & Partnerships Manager. Kristin’s scholarly work explores technology-assisted engagement, cross-sector partnerships, and tracking and assessment of community engagement. As a visiting scholar, Kristin serves as a thought partner on the evaluation of the P2 grant program and works with ICEE staff on community engagement tracking and measurement efforts. Kristin holds masters degrees from UNCG in Public Affairs and Educational Research, Measurement, and Evaluation.