Skip to Main Navigation | Skip to Content




Geography Program

Humphreys Building, Room 223
Warrensburg, MO 64093
Phone: 660.543.8085





advisory

The Geography Advisory Board

Geography's Advisory Board, organized in 2006, meets at least twice annually to discuss topics such as internships, careers, fundraising, and ways to promote the study and appreciation of geography.  Nine individuals currently serve on the board:  Brian Harker, J. Rick De Luca, James Ellis, Larry Gordon, Jac Lyn Carlson, Rosie De Long (left to right in photo below), Greg Cecil, Chandra Giri, and Marvin Miller (not pictured). 

 Advisory Board

Jac Lyn Carlson, Kansas City, MO
Rosalie A. De Long, Warrensburg, MO
J. Rick De Luca, Harrisonville, MO
James Ellis, Sedalia, MO
Larry Gordon, Kansas City, MO
Brian Harker, Lee's Summit, MO

Jac Lyn Carlson, Kansas City, MO

Jackie Carlson graduated from UCM in 2001 with a Bachelor of ScienceJac Lyn Carlson degree in Geography and a minor in International Studies.  Following her studies at UCM she pursued a Masters in Geography with an emphasis in Urban Planning at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls.  She is currently a Community Planner with Shafer, Kline & Warren, Inc. in North Kansas City, MO.  During her tenure at UCM she was awarded the Hibdon-Vogel Scholarship in Geography and the Outstanding Undergraduate in Geography Award.  She was active in the UCM Honors College, Phi Beta Delta International Honor Society, the Student Ambassador Program, and Gamma Theta Upsilon Honorary Society in Geography. In addition, she was a tutor in history and spent a semester studying at Vaxjo University in Sweden.  Jackie had an early interest in exploring the world:  "At age 17 I took my first trip out of the United States to Australia and New Zealand; instantly I knew I was hooked on traveling, exploring the world and learning about other cultures.  However, it wasn't until taking Dr. Digg's World Geography class that I realized my passion and academic pursuits could be combined.  Although I wasn't exactly sure what career path a major in Geography would offer, I knew it was something I had to explore."

Rosalie A. De Long, Warrensburg, MO

Following 23 years of service in the U.S. Navy, Rosalie De Long received her Rosalie De LongBachelor of Science degree in Geography from UCM in 1998, receiving the Outstanding Undergraduate Award in Geography and Writing Across the Curriculum Award in the College of Arts and Sciences.  Her research on the Ogallala Aquifer in the McNair High Achievers Program was published in the McNair Journal.  She was inducted into Gamma Theta Upsilon as well as Pi Sigma Alpha, and served as Geography Club President in her senior year.  For one year while a faculty search was underway, Rosalie taught the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) course for the department.  Presently, she is taking classes toward a Master's Degree in Geography in GIS from Northwest Missouri State University.  She has two grown children and a grandchild.

Geography has had special meaning to her through the years:  "I traveled while in the Navy, living in several states and in Iceland.  As a geographer, I look at people, places, and things differently, asking the 'Where, When, What, Who, and Why.'  Geography has opened my 'geographic eye' to the world around me."
J. Rick De Luca, Harrisonville, MO

Rick De Luca received his Bachelor of Science degree in Geography from Rick De LucaUCM in 1989 and his Master of Science degree in Geography from Oklahoma State University in 1993.  He is a member of Gamma Theta Upsilon.  Rick is currently employed as the Director of Community Development for the City of Harrisonville, MO.  He is a member of the American Planning Association (APA) and the AICP.  He is currently vice-chairman of the Resorts/Tourism Division of the APA.  Rick and his wife, Jennifer, have two children, John and Julie.

Rick commented:  "I cannot remember a specific time in which I became interested in geography.  Even when I was a small child I remember looking at maps and wanting to learn about places I had never been.  Consequently, when I attended UCM I took World Geography with Mr. Hibdon and loved it.  Then I took Cartography with Dr. Daniels and decided I wanted to major in geography."

James Ellis, Sedalia, MO

James Ellis, a native of Pettis County, MO, graduated from Central Missouri iJames Ellisn 1961 with majors in Geography and History.  He had a long and distinguished career with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, working on the Minute Man Missile Complex at Whiteman AFB, Truman Lake and Dam, the Inter-Oceanic Canal Study in Panama, and in real estate leasing and mapping for the government in several American states.  His skills in aerial photography and topographical mapping re-routed a railroad across Richard B. Russell Lake and saved the U.S. government $4.75 million.  He was responsible for real estate leasing in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait in connection with Desert Shield-Desert Storm, for which he received the J.W. Morris Medallion as Employee of the Year (1992).  The Ellises have two daughters and two granddaughters. 

When asked how he became interested in geography, Ellis wrote:  "I enrolled at UCM in the fall of 1957.  I was assigned an advisor by the name of Howard Hibdon.  In our discussions of my major-to-be, I indicated that history had always been of interest to me.  He asked if I had ever thought about Geography as a major.  I said no but that it sounded interesting since I was a recently discharged Navy veteran, and had enjoyed visiting foreign countries.  Needless to say, I became a Geography major and enjoyed every minute of it.  Geography has allowed me to be able to recognize landscapes, ethnic groups, and resources available to these groups.  Being a Geography major also gave me confidence when traveling in different countries, either alone or in a group, in my work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers."

Larry Gordon, Kansas City, MO

Larry GordonLarry Gordon received his Bachelor of Science degree in Geography from UCM.  He was inducted into Gamma Theta Upsilon in 1970 and as the outstanding senior he was awarded the National Council for Geographic Education's Excellence of Scholarship Award at graduation ceremonies in 1971.  He is currently a Lead Human Resources Specialist at the General Services Administration in Kansas City.  Larry and his wife, Sally, have three grown children and six grandchildren.

Gordon described how he came to appreciate geography:  "When I entered CMSC (yes, that's Central Missouri State College) as a veteran with three years of college education, I needed one "social studies" course to complete those requirements (I was aiming for a degree in Computer Science).  I took an intro geography course under Professor Hibdon.  That did it!  Most of the geography courses I completed were taught by two superb professors: the late Robert Vogel and Dave Daniels, who retired from UCM about four years ago.  I found the discipline so intriguing, I changed majors, and took 30 hours of Geography courses and completed my degree in Geography in a year and a half, graduating in the summer of 1971--when CMSC officially became UCM."

Brian Harker, Lee's Summit, MO

Brian HarkerBrian Harker graduated from UCM in 1992 with a major in Geography and a minor in Marketing.  In the early 1990s he worked in the mapping division of the Jackson County Assessment Department (Missouri) and had an internship with the Mid-America Regional Council where he assisted with the Missouri River Aquifer project and did background work for what later became the Bi-State Tax for the redevelopment of Union Station.  In 1996 he enrolled in the Urban and Regional Planning Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he developed expertise in land use dynamics.  While enrolled he completed internships in the community development departments of the cities of Liberty, MO, and Leawood, KS.  Following graduation in 1998, he took a planning position in Garden City, KS, where he administered block grant programs and helped with the 2000 Census.  He has also worked in Gardner, KS, as a planner and GIS specialist, and since May of 2003 he has been a planner with the City of Independence, MO.