Dr. Cynthia Neese Bailes, '70

Co-Chair, Committee on Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism

Board of Trustees


Dr. Cynthia Neese Bailes is professor emerita at Gallaudet. Her long history with the University began as an undergraduate student in 1966. After graduation, she taught at the South Dakota School for the Deaf. In 1979, she returned to Gallaudet to teach English at the Model Secondary School for the Deaf, where she remained for 15 years, the last seven years as a school administrator, five as principal. In 1994, Dr. Neese Bailes joined Gallaudet’s Department of Education, which she chaired from 2007-2010. She also served as BA Program Director from 2000-2008 and as PhD Program Director for seven years.

Dr. Neese Bailes has long been involved with the university’s bilingual efforts, infusing ASL/ English bilingualism in her teaching and research, and participating in various university-wide efforts to promote the university’s bilingual mission, mentoring doctoral students conducting research internships and dissertation studies, and participating in Gallaudet Research Institute (GRI) endeavors to establish research priorities. She took part in the faculty governance system, first as a member of the Council of Undergraduate Education, and later as a member of the Faculty Senate and its executive committee.

Since retiring, Dr. Neese Bailes has been involved in the Gallaudet University Alumni Association and has continued to mentor doctoral students. She continues her research through autoethnography to explore lived experiences of growing up deaf within non-signing hearing families.


  • Ph.D., University of Maryland
  • M.A., Teaching, Augustana College
  • B.A., English, Gallaudet University