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Academics - Rhetoric Faculty & Staff

Academics - Rhetoric Faculty & Staff

Todd F. McDorman

Professor of Rhetoric

Dr. Todd McDorman, a Rhetoric professor at Wabash since 1998, officially became Dean of the College on July 1, 2022 after serving as Acting Dean the two previous years.

Previously Dean McDorman served as Senior Associate Dean of the College (2014-2018); chair of the Rhetoric Department; was the lead writer of Wabash's successful 2012 reaceditation self-study; served as faculty visitor to the Board of Trustees and on the Board's Strategy Committee; and chaired committees and activities such as the Pre-Law Committee, Undergraduate Research Committee, and Freshman Tutorial (co-chair).

As Dean of the College, he leads the College's Personnel Committee, which oversees faculty hiring and reviews, and chairs the Academic Policy Committee. Under his leadership, Wabash launched it first online summer classes for course recovery and joined the Council for Independent Colleges (CIC) Online Couse Sharing Consortium. As a member of the Healthy Campus Task Force, he led efforts to keep the academic program on track during the COVID-19 pandemic, including making modifications to instruction, the academic calendar, comprehensive exams, and classroom set-ups.

Most of Professor McDorman’s current scholarship examines the rhetoric of sport, with a particular emphasis on the redemptive efforts of banished baseball icon Pete Rose to repair his image. He has presented his work at the National Baseball Hall of Fame on several occasions. His other research has focused on the rhetoric of law, with particular interest in marginalized groups, and the relationship of rhetoric and democracy.

Dean McDorman and his wife Kelly are the parents of three children. He is something of sports fanatic, with particular affinity for baseball, the Cincinnati Reds, and baseball trivia. He is also a recreational runner.


Ph.D. in Speech Communication, Indiana University Bloomington, 1998
M.A. in Speech Communication, Miami University (Oxford , OH), 1993
B.A. in Communication Studies and Political Science, Butler University (Indianapolis, IN), 1992


Rhetoric 101 Public Speaking
Rhetoric 270 Rhetoric of Sport
Rhetoric 497 Senior Seminar

Freshman Tutorial: Harry Potter and the Liberal Arts
Freshman Tutorial: Baseball and American Identity


  • "The Most Interesting Main in Baseball? Joey Votto, Hegemonic Masculinity, and Baseball's New Statistics." 33rd Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and Amerian Culture, June 2, 2022, Cooperstown NY."
  • "Pete Rose's Play Hungry and Nostalgic Remembrance: Recalling the Good Old Days and Forgetting Nearly Everything Else." 32nd Cooperstown Symposium and Baseball and American Culture, June 5, 2021 (virtual conference).
  • "Sports and Life," Wabash College Chapel Talk, October 24, 2019.
  • "'Nobody's Perfect': Armando Galarraga's (Im)Perfect Game and Instant Replay," 31st Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, May 29, 2019.
  • “#14FOREVER: Nostalgia, Pete Rose and the Cincinnati Reds," 29th Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, May 31, 2017.
  • “One for the Books”: (Re)Constructing Baseball History, Memory, and Community.  26th Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, May 29, 2014.
  • The 34th Annual LaFollette Lecture, “One for the Books: Rhetoric, Community, and Memory” (October 10, 2013). News Story, YouTube
  • “Writing Charlie Hustle: The Pete Rose Story and Autobiographical Image Making.” 25th Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, May 29, 2013, Cooperstown, NY.
  • “Before He Changed My Story: Revisiting Pete Rose’s Denial of Baseball Gambling.”  24th  Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, May 30, 2012, Cooperstown, NY.


Jennifer Y. Abbott, Todd F. McDorman, David M. Timmerman, and L. Jill Lamberton, Public Speaking and Democratic Participation: Speaking, Listening, and Deliberating in the Civic Realm. New York: Oxford University Press, 2016.

Todd F. McDorman and David M. Timmerman, eds. Rhetoric and Democracy: Pedagogical and Political Practices. East Lansing: Michigan State University Press, 2008.

Todd F. McDorman and Donovan Bisbee, "'Nobody's Perfect': Armando Galarraga's (Im)Perfect Game and Instant Replay." In The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2019 and 2021 (pp. 16-35), William M. Simons (ed.), McFarland, 2022.

"#14Forever: Nostalgia, Pete Rose, and the Cincinnati Reds." In Reputational Challenges in Sport: Theory and Application (pp. 153-169), Andrew C. Billings, W. Timothy Coombs, and Kenon A. Brown (eds.), Routledge, 2018.

“’One for the Books’: (Re)Constructing Baseball History, Memory, and Community.” In The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2013-2014 (pp. 225-241), William M. Simons (ed.), McFarland, 2015.

“The Making of Charlie Hustle: Pete Rose and the American Dream, 1963-1985.” In The Cooperstown Symposium on Baseball and American Culture, 2009-2010 (pp. 140-154), William M. Simons (ed.). McFarland, 2011.

“History, Collective Memory, and the Supreme Court: Debating ‘the people’ through the Dred Scott Controversy.” Southern Communication Journal 71 (2006): 213-234.

Todd F. McDorman, Kurt Casper, Aaron Logan, and Sean McGinley, "Where Have All the Heroes Gone? An Exploration of Cultural Therapy in Jerry Maguire, For Love of the Game, and Any Given Sunday." Journal of Sport and Social Issues 30 (2006): 197-218.

“Controlling Death: Bio-Power and the Right-to-Die Controversy.” Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies 2 (2005): 257-279.

“Challenging Constitutional Authority: African American Responses to Scott v. Sandford. Quarterly Journal of Speech 83 (1997): 192-209.


2016-2017 Council of Independent College's Senior Leadership Academy program participant

Lead scholar for 43rd Annual National Undergraduate Honors Conference at DePauw University, April 20-22, 2017. Mentor for students selected for conference participation and public presentation

Thirty-Fourth Annual LaFollette Lecturer, Wabash College, October 10, 2013

Rose B. Johnson SCJ Article Award for Volume 71, 2006 of the Southern Communication Journal for “History, Collective Memory, and the Supreme Court: Debating ‘the people’ through the Dred Scott Controversy.”

2006-07 McLain, McTurnan, Arnold Research Scholar Award

The Richard O. Ristine Law Award, presented by the Wabash College Pre-Law Society in recognition of contributions to Wabash College and the practice of law, March 23, 2003.


McDorman discusses his new position as Senior Associate Dean of the College and his work in the rhetoric department.