College of Criminal Justice Expands Specialties

Picture of the front of the College of Criminal Justice building.

The College of Criminal Justice has been reorganized into three new departments -- Criminal Justice and Criminology, Forensic Science, and Security Studies. These organizational changes along with the hiring of additional faculty will create even stronger collaborations between research and professionals in each field.

Dr. Gaylene Armstrong was appointed Chair of the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology, with new faculty beginning in each department in the fall of 2013. Among the new faculty hired are Drs. Erin A. Orrick and Lisa Muftic in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice; Drs. John David Payne and Magdalena Denham in the Department of Security Studies; and Dr. Jasmine Drake in the Department of Forensic Science.

Dr. Gaylene Armstrong
Dr. Gaylene Armstrong
“We want to ensure the research we engage in makes a difference to the field of criminal justice and criminology,” said Armstrong. “We have one of the largest programs in the country and unique collaborations with law enforcement, corrections and victim services agencies and institutes that provide unparalleled access to the key issues and resources in the field. These opportunities provide our students with educational experiences that are among the best in the country.”

Dr. Armstrong joined the College of Criminal Justice in 2007, where she served as Research Director for the Correctional Management Institute of Texas and the Director of Criminal Justice and Criminology Graduate Programs. She held positions at Arizona State University, where she headed the internship program. She also was an assistant professor at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale.

Dr. Erin Orrick
Dr. Erin Orrick
Dr. Orrick, a Ph.D. graduate from the University of Texas at Dallas, specializes in the field of corrections, including contemporary issues, prisoner reentry and recidivism as well as criminal careers and criminal justice policy. She recently published articles in several leading journals, including Crime and Delinquency, the Journal of Criminal Justice, the Journal of Criminal Justice Education, the Southwest Journal of Criminal Justice and the Journal of Drug Education. In 2012, she was awarded the William L. Simon/Anderson Publishing Outstanding Paper for her research on “Do parole technical violators pose a public safety threat? An analysis of prison misconduct.”

Dr. Lisa R. Muftic
Dr. Lisa R. Muftic
Dr. Muftic, an former assistant professor at Georgia State University and the University of North Texas in Denton, recently returned from a year as a visiting Fulbright Professor at the University of Sarajevo. She has been widely published in criminal justice journals across the globe and specializes in the study of interpersonal violence, gender, international and comparative criminal justice issues, criminological theory and program evaluation.


Dr. John David Payne
Dr. John David Payne
Dr. Payne taught at Texas State University in San Marcos, Brigham Young University, the University of Massachusetts Lowell, and Emerson College. He is an expert in security studies, with an emphasis on terrorism and counterterrorism. His research is focused on the role of terrorism in the international system of states.


Dr. Jasmine Drake
Dr. Jasmine Drake
Dr. Drake worked as a forensic chemist for the Drug Enforcement Administration as well as a NRC Postdoctoral Research Chemist for the NIST Center for Neutron Research. She also taught at Cedar Valley Community College in Dallas and at Nimitz High School in Irving. She has over 15 publications and presentations in her field, including articles in the Journal of Solid State Chemistry, Chemistry of Materials, Physical Review B, Applied Physics, Materials Research Bulletin, and Physical Review Letters.

Dr. Magdalena Denham
Dr. Magdalena Denham
Dr. Denham specializes in school safety and public safety leadership. She serves as a Project Manager at the Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas, where she leads the International Police Program, the Incident Command Simulation Training Program and Professional Development Programs. She has published articles in the Journal of School Violence, the Law Enforcement Executive Form, the Graduate Research Journal and Texas Study.

Member of The Texas State University System