Texas Tech University

About Us

Dr. Ralph Ferguson

Managing Director, Fulbright Global Specialist, and Executive Editor and Publisher

Dr.Ralph Ferguson is the Managing Director of the Texas Tech University Ethics Center and is a Fulbright Specialist on business and international issues. The 26th Annual Association for Practical and Professional Ethics Conference invited the TTU Ethics Center to host their Director Summit. The leadership of the TTU Ethics Center discussed effective innovative strategies to enhance service to students and build global networks. The invitation to host the summit demonstrates the high regard peers have for the TTU Ethics Center. Using social media, organizations across the globe view interviews and prompts from the TTU Ethics Center that presents information about academic integrity, research misconduct, and genocide, race, community relations and other relevant ethical topics. TTU students gain awareness to enrich classroom study utilizing their e-devices to access Ethics Center social media or to check the calendar to attend an on-site program.


Dr. Ferguson speaks to groups about ethical analytics related to the impact of the rising cost of education, management, business development, values, personal financial planning, debt, emerging markets, inclusiveness, and disenfranchisement. Dr. Ferguson was a principal owner in DancingFibers.com, a limited liability corporation, which distributed imported knitting yarns from China, Bolivia, Peru, and Japan to more than three hundred retail stores in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. Under his leadership, Dancing Fibers, LLC partnered with Alamas de la Andes to create opportunities for Aymara and Quechua Indian women in Bolivia.

At TTU Dr. Ferguson serves as a management professor in the Department of Public Health at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. As a consulting member of REF Management LLC, Dr. Ferguson addresses complex problems related to business, science, engineering, ecology, and organizational structure with professional peers. He is a leading analyst on the economics and ecological benefits of tire derived fuel. A leader in education and business, his words and deeds focus on human rights, economics, ecology, education disparity, employment, and agriculture.

Dr. Ferguson brings a wealth of knowledge to his work and research from careers as a successful entrepreneur, corporate executive, Court Administrator, Magistrate, and Municipal Court Judge. Dr. Ferguson holds a Master's in Public Administration from the University of Southern California and a doctorate from Texas Tech University in Personal Financial Planning (CEED).

Lisa James, M.Ed. (Photo Unavailable)

Associate Director and Management and Distribution Chief (Domestic & International)

Lisa James, serves as Associate Director for the Texas Tech University Ethics Center. Serving as a leading team member to push forward the outreach of the center to benefit students, staff, faculty, and community, she manages pivotal functions: 1) SWRCAI blog to communicate with peers; 2) Peer-to-Peer student program that visits with campus organizations about Texas Tech University Statement of Ethical Principles; 3) Adaptive strategic budget planning partner to maximize use of revenue to sustain quality programs through disciplinary partnerships; 4) Adapt at utilizing student focus groups for foundation information to tailor ethical best practices workshops; 5) Use of collaborative skills in development of training workshops, conference presentations, social media analysis, and preparatory assignment analytics.

To the Ethics Center mission, Ms. James is the recipient of the Texas Tech University Quality Service Award (2012) for support of the emerging scientist and engineers' initiative launched through administration. She brings an array of professional experiences that make her an asset to the center and university. Her talents have been part of the team guiding the development and completion of two Quality Enhancement Plans for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The programs that evolve from Quality Enhancement Plans serve to enrich the academic values of the institution. At the national level to support the effort to achieve the Hispanic Serving Institution designation for the Title III and Title V waivers to benefits the increasing diversity on the campus, Ms. James for more than five years did use her analytical know-how to collect and prep data for Federal Department of Education reporting by the Texas Tech University executive team.

The Association for Professional and Practical Ethics recognizes the transformative leadership of the Texas Tech University Ethics Center with the request to lead the 2017 Directors Summit. This is a high honor for Ms. James and team that in less than five years the Texas Tech University Ethics Center is seen as an innovator in encouraging and promoting ethical conduct. Ms. James has a Master's degree with academic work in-process toward the doctorate.

Lora L. Lopez, M.S.   (Photo Unavailable)

Program Manager and Deputy Editor-in-Chief

Lora L. Lopez, serves as Program Manager for the TTU Ethics Center reaching out to undergraduate/graduate students through presentations and social media. As a team member in the TTU Ethics Center she serves as a leadership compass for students, staff, faculty, and community orienting them towards ethical conduct.

Ms. Lopez navigates the mission of the Ethics Center in the following key areas: 1) as oversight lead for the Faculty Ethics Symposium; 2) in charge of the assessment survey tool, Ethical Principles on Blackboard for students, staff, and faculty to utilize; 3) as the manager of the center's social media; 4) as the lead in interviewing and editing videos for social media posting; 5) by cultivating a relationship with the Organization of American States to guide the Ethics Center hemispheric activities; 6) as a collaborator for adaptive strategic budget planning working as the primary point of contact for bringing programs like "A Fragile Trust", "Survivors", and "no más bebés" campus; 7) as a presenter at national and international conferences focusing on undergraduate/graduate students ethical issues, and 8) as the coordinator for the bi-annual "Donut Cheat" initiative to promote ethical behavior during final exams.

She is a resourceful team member with solid reputation in development of projects that serve the academic community. Projects and initiatives sustained from her leadership service in the TTU graduate school: A) travel grants to reduce financial burden on graduate students presenting papers at conferences; B) establishment of a research poster competition to showcase quality scientific investigation in-process to taxpayers; C) family night-out that domestic and international student families can engage with pizza and movie; D) invited by the State of Texas to serve on the University Records Retention Schedule Subcommittee.

Including her talents with other team members, the Association for Professional and Practical Ethics recognizes the TTU Ethics Center innovative and insightful approach to utilizing technology. The association invites the team to the international conference to lead their prestigious 2017 Directors Summit. As a professional, Lora demonstrates high interest in compassionate service through volunteer activities with the following agencies: Mentor Tech, Multicultural Faculty and Staff Association, Hispanic Association of Women, Fiestas Del Llano, Inc., Ronald McDonald House Charities of the Southwest, and the South Plains Food Bank. Ms. Lopez has a Master's degree in Interdisciplinary Studies.

Anastasia Coles, M.A.   (Photo Unavailable)

Program Manager and Editor-in-Chief

Anastasia Coles, holds a Masters in Technical Communication from TTU, and serves as Program Manager. She developed the animated "Ethical Principles" illustrated feature for the web site to accompany the center's promotion of the seven ethical principles.

She is the primary liaison with TTU's Mentor Tech for the TTU Ethics Center's Compassionate Service mission, working as a writing tutor for Mentor Tech's monthly tutoring sessions. She also continues to be a primary participant in promotional activities through Red Raider Orientation, new faculty orientation, and regular TTU Ethics Center events.

Ms. Coles edits and assembles the online Journal of the Texas Tech Ethics Center, featuring presentations from the annual Global Ethics Day and faculty symposia. The journal represents the TTU Ethics Center's promotion of scholarly research on ethics in academia and beyond. Ms. Coles is also the primary writer and editor of an interview series with TTU faculty about teaching ethics in their disciplines. This series is featured on the Ethics Center web site as a blog entitled "Continuing the Conversation on Ethics". Faculty across all TTU colleges have participated in the interviews.

She has helped lead projects for the Ethics Center that involve TTU faculty innovations in ethics pedagogy and programs to help students develop critical thinking skills while avoiding inadvertent plagiarism. She has led workshops to help students avoid poor ethical decision-making in academic contexts. Materials from these workshops will form the content of a future issue of the Ethics Center journal.

Research Assistant

Position Vacant

Phuongminh Nguyen (Photo Unavailable)

Student Assistant

Phuongminh Nguyen serves as Student Assistant for the TTU Ethics Center. Phuongminh completed his High School Diploma with High Honors and distinction at Lubbock High School. He was also a successful Advance Placement (AP) graduate and the first full Vietnamese at his high school to earn the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma. Prior to attending TTU, Phuongminh completed his Pre-College Leadership Program at Brown University and earned the Brown Leadership Institute diploma. Phuongminh is currently a freshman at Texas Tech University and the Honors College. He is in the process of pursuing a BA degree and double majoring in Political Science and Honors Arts and Letters with the concentration in Health and Humanities. Outside his academic life, he was a Research Assistant for Dr. Hai Nguyen and participated in the research and writing process of Dr. Nguyen's Vietnam War project. Moreover, Phuongminh is involved in community works by volunteering as a member of HON Eta Omicron Nu, volunteering at Bayless Elementary School as a mentor, becoming a Honors First-Year Experience mentor and a UMC volunteer.

In his role as Student Assistant, his primary duties include: managing data collection and analysis for Ethics Center research projects, serving as liaison for the Ethics Center at Red Raider Orientation events, providing peer-to-peer (P2P) academic integrity program presentations, and providing support at TTU Ethics Center programs and initiatives engaging TTU students, faculty, staff, and administrators.