- Gazel Giles – President
- Sovent Taylor – Past President
- Erin Ridout – President-Elect
- Kristi Boggan – Treasurer
- Ev Barrett – Secretary
- Premalatha Balachandran – Scholarship Coordinator
- Deetra A. Sims-Wiley – Marketing Coordinator
Gazel Giles serves as president of Staff Council. In this role, she serves as the representative of staff members for all campus locations. She is responsible for leading discussions and bringing attention to staff concerns with Staff Council members and the Chancellor. She organizes all meeting agendas, acts as the official spokesman for the council, and makes executive decisions without council approval when necessary. In addition, she presides over all meetings and attends monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Erin Ridout serves as president-elect of Staff Council. In this role, she executes the duties of the president in the president’s absence, supervises elections and counting ballots, works with the secretary on maintaining unexcused absence, notifies members in the of replace due to violation of absence policy, prepares to assume the role of president, and attends monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Ridout has worked for the University of Mississippi for three and a half years. She currently works in the Office of Admissions as an Admissions Specialist for Mississippi residents with last names A-L and is a co-instructor for EDHE 105. Previously, she has worked in The Office of the Registrar and in Athletics as a tutor. Her current duties include processing applications for students and counseling them throughout the admissions process.
Ridout is a 2011 graduate of the University of Mississippi, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Secondary English Education. Originally from McComb, MS, she is married to Steven Ridout, an internal auditor at the University.
Sovent Taylor serves as past president of Staff Council. In this role, he serves on the Executive Council, assists with the transition of new officers, performs other duties as assigned, and attends monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Taylor has worked for the University of Mississippi for nine years. He serves as assistant director in the Health Professions Advising Office. His duties include advising students in several health professional fields. He also advises several student organizations, including Alpha Epsilon Delta Honors Society and the American Student Dental Association. Other duties include, but are not limited to managing the health professional scholarships, supervising graduate students and staff and coordinating health professional events for current students.
Taylor is an alumnus of the University of Mississippi, where he received a Bachelor of Arts (psychology) and Bachelor of Business Administration (marketing) in 2003, and his Master of Arts (higher education/student personnel) in 2006. A native of Clarksdale, MS, he is married and has two children.
Kristi Boggan serves as Staff Council treasurer. She is in her 19th year as administrative secretary for the University Band Department. Her duties include helping to organize the annual Mid-South Honor Band clinic, which involves about 200 high school students and 70 band directors, processing band scholarships, scheduling scholarship auditions, making travel arrangements for the directors and band members for all away football games, maintaining the band budget, overseeing all purchases and maintaining inventory, supervising graduate assistants and work-study students, providing customer service to area band directors and to current and prospective students and their parents, and attending monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Boggan received her Bachelor of Arts in mathematics in 2005. She and her husband, Chad, have three children, Steven, 22, Shelby, 19, and Blake, 12.
Ev Barrett serves as Staff Council secretary. She is responsible for preparing minutes of each meeting, assisting the president-elect in maintaining a record of unexcused absences, assisting in the preparation and distribution of correspondence and other council business to representatives, staff members, etc., and attending monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Barrett joined the university in 2007 as coordinator of iStudy in the Division of Outreach. In 2012, she accepted a position as project coordinator for the dean of the College of Liberal Arts. Her responsibilities include providing administrative support for the dean and coordinating various projects related to faculty and chair activities such as Curriculum and Policy meetings, tenure and promotion, sabbatical leave, IHL reports and quadrennial reviews.
She received her Bachelor of Arts in accountancy (1981) and her Master of Arts in higher education (2010) from the University of Mississippi. She is married and has two sons.
Dr. Premalataha Balachandran oversees Staff Council’s Staff Textbook scholarship program. She announces scholarship application deadlines for each semester, processes and evaluates all the applications for eligibility and sends award mail to the recipients. She also coordinates with the Ole Miss Bookstore, issuing vouchers, with Contractual Services handling payments to the bookstore and also with the Office of Financial Aid. In addition, the administrator maintains a database of applicants and complete records of accounts to comply with the University Auditors office. She attends monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Premalatha has served at National Center for Natural Products Research (NCNPR), School of Pharmacy, University of Mississippi for 14 years. She joined NCNPR as a Post-doc in 2002. In 2005, she was appointed as an Associate Research Scientist and was promoted to the current position of Senior Scientist in 2015.
As a Senior Scientist, Premalatha’s research interests include, discovering of new active drugs from the plants that contribute to human health benefits, especially those that exhibit anti-cancer and immune enhancing properties. In partnership with UMMC-Cancer Institute at Jackson, MS, she searches for more effective approaches in cancer therapy that will include both modern medical practices in addition to traditional medicine from various countries. One of the main focuses of her research deals with the development of new molecular biological screens that target signal transduction pathways known to be involved in the expression of cancer. In overall, her research contributes to the efforts of fighting against life-threatening cancers.
Premalatha has authored approximately 30 publications that include research and review articles in high impact journals and also book chapters. She also serves as a reviewer for many journals.
Premalatha received a Bachelors of Science degree in Chemistry and a Master of Science in Medical Biochemistry from University of Madras, Chennai, India. She also obtained Ph.D in Medical Biochemistry from the same university.
She is married to Karthikeyan Rathinavelu, Owner and President of Thik and Thin Constructions LLC., They have 2 children, Keerthin and Sagan.
Deetra Wiley serves as the conduit between the UM Staff Council and UM staff to report events via website and social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, Staff Council website, UM Today, etc.). Her responsibilities include managing the social media elements to promote staff awareness and foster interaction, education, engagement, and discussion regarding policies and issues significant to constituents through the use of online communities. She attends monthly meetings with the Chancellor.
Wiley has served the University of Mississippi for 17 years, since May 1999. She serves as an applications analyst and business communications specialist in the Office of Information Technology. Her duties include teaching SAP training classes and assigning related authorizations, editing language for technical projects, writing technical articles/requested proposals, testing projects, providing latest language updates, etc. Other duties include but are not limited to managing of the SAP Support website, coordinating IT related events, marketing/advertising, etc. She also serves as Vice President of Membership for Ole Miss Toastmasters.
Deetra received her Bachelor of Arts in English (1992), Master of Arts in English (1997), and Master of Arts De in Higher Education (2012) from the University of Mississippi. She also holds an Associate of Arts in English/Communication from Coahoma Community College (1991). Her Motto: “Believe, Begin, Become!” Some of her hobbies include acting, motivational speaking, socializing.
She is married to Rev. Derell A. Wiley, Pastor of Sykes Chapel Church in Lambert, MS. They have 3 children: Nya, Tyler, & Amber.