The Honors Program office is located in The Academic Village and is the center of a premier residential living and learning community. The office staff makes up the leadership team of the University Honors Program, whose primary responsibility is to develop innovative and superb educational opportunities for Honors students.

Lori Williams, Shivon Pontious, Nicole Vieira, Don Mykles, Diane Burton and Judi Bryant

Dr. Donald Mykles, Director:

Professor Don Mykles received his Ph.D. in zoology from the University of California, Berkeley. He was a Postdoctoral Fellow in biochemistry at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tennessee before joining the biology faculty at Colorado State University in 1985, becoming a full professor in 1993. He is also a faculty member in the Molecular, Cellular, and Integrative Neurosciences Program and the Cell and Molecular Biology Program and a scholar in the School of Global Environmental Sustainability. He served as Interim Chair and Assistant Chair in the Department of Biology and Associate Dean in the College of Natural Sciences before becoming Director of the University Honors Program. His research concerns the hormonal control of growth and limb regeneration in crabs and lobsters, which has applications for crustacean aquaculture, the management of fisheries, and understanding the effects of environmental pollution and climate change. He is a strong advocate for involving undergraduate students in research. He has received awards for his research and student mentoring, including the National Science Foundation Young Investigator, Fulbright Scholar at University of Heidelberg, Distinguished Research Fellow at the UC Davis Bodega Marine Laboratory, Outstanding Honors Academic Advisor, College of Natural Sciences Excellence in Mentoring Undergraduate Research, and College of Natural Sciences Excellence in Graduate Education and Mentoring. Don can be reached at (970) 491-5679 and his email is

Diane Burton, Assistant Director: 

Diane received her master’s degree in Government from the College of William and Mary. She has worked in various positions in higher education including a tenure-track faculty position in political science at Thomas Nelson Community College in Virginia. She is currently teaching classes at Front Range Community College in Fort Collins. Before joining the CSU Honors Program in 2005, Diane served as Assistant Director for the Center for Life Sciences and the assistant director of the Center for Advising and Student Achievement (CASA) at CSU. Diane’s responsibilities include advising Honors students, tracking their progress in meeting honors graduation requirements, teaching the HONR 399 pre-thesis class, serving as a member of the CSU Admissions Advisory Committee, and advising and registering students at summer orientation (Preview). She also assists the Director in the recruitment and retention of high ability students and reviews applications to the UHP, as well as making presentations during high school visit days and recruiting events. She also serves as the faculty advisor for a student organization and is a member of the Professional Advising Network at CSU. Her deep commitment to higher education and strong desire to help students develop their full potential have always been evident throughout her career. She received the Honors advising award in 2011. Diane can be reached at (970) 491-2225 and her email is

Judi Bryant, Program Coordinator:

Judi received her Ph.D. in Higher Education Administration from the University of Washington.  She served as the Vice President for Student Affairs at North Georgia College and State University before returning to her native state of Colorado.  She brought extensive experience with first year programs and learning communities at CU-Boulder, Tennessee, and Georgia State to her position in the University Honors Program.  Her experience on the Georgia Board of Regents Advisory Committee on Retention, Progression and Graduation is indicative of her commitment to helping students succeed. She has also a past president and Honor Award winner in the National Intramural Recreational Sports Association. Judi began her position here at CSU Honors after she returned to Colorado in 2006. Judi is primarily responsible for the recruitment and training of peer mentors, developing and implementing programs for the Honors Residential Learning Communities, advising the Honors Student Association, coordinating special events (e.g. Faculty Firesides, Fall Welcome, Honors Prof Lecture), overseeing publication of the Honors Literary magazine (Spiritus Mundi), and fostering connections with graduates. Her phone number is (970) 491-2318 and her email is

Shivon Pontious, Advising, Student Success, and Special Projects Coordinator

Shivon received her bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies in 2008 from Eastern Washington University, and is a first generation college student. She worked for a local county government for 8 years, and worked her way from senior secretary to a probation officer position. She attended the 3 week Peace Officer Standards and Training Academy in 2011, received an award for best student, and was certified as an Adult Misdemeanor Probation Officer. She later became certified as a POST instructor. She joined the Honors staff after moving to Colorado in 2016, and is currently pursuing a Master's degree in Student Affairs in Higher Education at here at CSU. Her responsibilities include student recruitment, advising Track 2 students, arranging Honors engagement activities, assisting with summer orientation, and coordinating Honors events. Shivon can be reached at (970) 491-1746 and her email is

Lori Williams, Program Assistant:

Lori Williams has been a dedicated employee at CSU for the past 15 years in many different capacities. She has worked in the HELP/Success Center at the front desk where she provided excellent service to undergraduate students before it became the Center for Advising and Student Achievement. Later Lori contributed to the department of Clinical Sciences as the Continuing Education Coordinator. And most recently, Lori was the graduate administrator for Cell and Molecular Biology where she orchestrated recruitment, assisted students on their path to graduate degrees and ensured that the department functioned at its highest level. Lori’s extensive experience and expertise can now be found in the Honors department where she serves as the Program Assistant. She is continuing her education by pursuing a degree in economics, right here at CSU. An expert in student service and administrative duties, should you require her assistance, Lori can be reached at (970) 491-6200 or

Katie Dorn, Administrative Assistant:

Katie Dorn has a variety of experience in local government, non-profit, and for-profit settings. She served as an AmeriCorps VISTA Leader with the United Way of Weld County and as an AmeriCorps VISTA Member at Hawaiian Community Assets. Katie received her Master of Historic Preservation degree in 2017 from the University of Florida. She received her Bachelor of Science in architectural studies and Bachelor of Arts in history in 2010 from Southern Illinois University. She volunteers as a member of the City of Fort Collins Landmark Preservation Commission. Katie can be reached at (970) 491-5679 or


Zach Van Handel, IT Work Study:

Zach is the fabulous student assistant aiding the Honors Program with his many talents.