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About Sonya S. Gaither

Professional Statement: Highly energetic, multi-tasker who enjoys challenging and rewarding opportunities where teaching, research, computer, and administrative skills and talents are used to help meet educational and professional goals as well as lead and collaborate with other information professionals in accomplishing the vision and mission of a post-secondary institution of higher learning
Professional Biography: Currently serving as the Director of Library & Professor of Library Science at the Dorothy W. Hightower Library, Gordon State College in Barnesville, Georgia, Dr. Sonya S. Gaither was a tenured Professor serving as the Library Assessment Officer (LAO) in the Zach S. Henderson Library, Georgia Southern University. She collaborated with library units to create and manage library services and instruction assessments. In addition, Dr. Gaither served as library liaison to the College of Education, offers research assistance, and contributes to the Library’s instruction and collection development activities. She also actively participated in library and campus committees. Previously, Dr. Shepherd served as Learning Commons Director (3 years) and Associate Department Head (8 years) of the Information Services Department, Henderson Library. She serves the library profession on the state level as well as serves the community through her church and sorority. Dr. Shepherd holds a BS degree in Computer Science with Mathematics minor (LaGrange College, 1993), a MS in Library Service (Clark-Atlanta University, 1995), and an EDD in Educational Administration (Georgia Southern University, 2003).


Present Director of Library & Professor of Library Science, Gordon College

Curriculum Vitae

Research Interests

Curriculum, Educational Research, Educational Leadership, Educational Technology, Human Development, Effective Teaching, Learning, Information Literacy, Library Assessment, Strategic Planning & Goal Setting, SPSS, and Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)

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Honors and Awards

  • Xi Tau Chapter, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Appreciation of Service as Academic Advisor (December 2012)
  • Outstanding Advisor of the Year, Office of Fraternity & Sorority Relations, Georgia Southern University (December 2012)
  • Provost Circle Award, presented to adjunct faculty who have demonstrated an exceptional and long-standing commitment to excellence in instruction, Strayer University (2011)
  • 2011 Marquis Who’s Who in America (2010)
  • Xi Tau Chapter, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Advisor of the Year Award (July 2009)
  • Georgia Southern University Human Resources Training Program, Certificate of Appreciation for Serving as Instructor (December 2007)
  • Training Management Series, Georgia Southern University (October 2007)
  • Wall of Outstanding Alumni Award for Professional Achievement and Community Service, LaGrange College (October 2007)
  • Featured Faculty, Center of Excellence in Teaching (February 2007)
  • Ronald E. McNair Post baccalaureate Certificate of Appreciation for Serving as Instructor (2007-2012))
  • PRISM Grant, Knowledge Survey with Dr. David Robinson (Participant) $250 (2005)
  • Frye Leadership Fellow (2005)
  • Georgia Southern University, Competitive Travel Grant $660 (2004)
  • Special Recognition as Faculty Advisor, Oversaw the 1999 chartering of the GSU Undergraduate Council of the National Pan-Hellenic Council (2004)
  • Evanel R. Terrell Scholarship Award, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Gamma Sigma Omega Chapter (2004)
  • Epsilon Xi, Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Outstanding Service (2002)
  • Irene W. McCollum Under 35 Finer Womanhood Award, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority (2001)
  • Xi Tau, Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Appreciation for Service and Dedication (2000)
  • Georgia Southern University Supervisory Leadership Program (2000)
  • Georgia Southern University Student Organization Advisor of the Year (1999-2000)
  • Outstanding and Dedicated Service to GSU National Pan-Hellenic Council (1998- 1999)
  • Snowbird Library Leadership Fellow (1999)


  • EDLD 8839:Directed Research in Educational Leadership
  • EDLD 9534: Coginitive Issues in Higher Education

Contact Information

Dorothy W. Hightower Library
Gordon State College
419 College Drive
Barnesville, Georgia 30224
Phone: (678) 359-5076
Fax: (678) 359-5024


Articles (6)

Books (1)

Contributions to Books (5)

Presentations (48)