David Nathaniel Mielke, ED.D.



Dr. Richard D. Howe, “David Nathaniel Mielke, ED.D.,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed May 23, 2024, https://omeka.library.appstate.edu/items/show/48067.

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David Nathaniel Mielke, ED.D.


Appalachian State University
Universities and colleges--Faculty


Dr. Richard D. Howe




Biographical sketches


Boone (N.C.)

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Temporal Coverage



Professor Emeritus

Biographical Text

Professor Emeritus of Leadership and Educational Studies David Nathaniel Mielke (January 2, 1945-), was born in Brooklyn, New York. He graduated from University High School, Johnson City, Tennessee, in 1963. He received his B.S. degree in political science and history from East Tennessee State University, Johnson City, in 1967. Mielke also attended the University of Tennessee in Knoxville, where he earned an M.S. degree in curriculum (1971) and an Ed.D. degree in educational foundations (1977). In addition, he received a seminary degree from the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in 1986. Mielke was honorably discharged from the United State Naval Reserves in 1967 at the rank of hospital corpsman, third class. He worked as a junior high teacher of math, science, and history, as well as a tennis coach, in the Tennessee public schools from 1967 to 1971. Mielke worked as a graduate teaching assistant while pursuing his doctorate, and he was an instructor at Roane State Community College in Harriman, Tennessee. His dissertation was on the educational contribution of W. E. B. DuBois. Mielke came to Appalachian State University in 1972 as an assistant professor in the Department of Secondary Education. In 1973, he received a joint appointment to the Department of Political Science; in 1977, he was promoted to associate professor, and in 1981, he earned the rank of professor. He was active in a number of university activities, including helping to design and implement the master's degree in Appalachian Studies. He was also widely involved in international education, visiting and working with schools in central Europe. Mielke served as director of the Appalachian Culture Ethnic Heritage Project, and, during the 1975-76 academic year, he was director of the Title IX funded project "Appalachian Studies for Teachers," a project which involved teaching Appalachian Studies workshops throughout a three-state, twenty-seven county region. Mielke was also co-editor of The Faculty Voice and participated in the university's Administrative Internship Program. During his academic career, Dr. Mielke directed student exchange programs between Appalachian State University, North Carolina Central University, and Central Michigan University. He was involved in the public school teacher-exchange project, served as director of the Urban Education Simulation Laboratory, and was on the minority advisory council for the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics. Mielke was an academic consultant for the National Science Foundation Workshop on Social Studies Education, which was held at the University of Minnesota-Morris in 1973. He also served as planner and primary consultant on Appalachia and rural problems in education for the Southeastern Teacher Corps Network Workshop on Ethnic Studies. Additionally, Dr. Mielke was a consultant and writer for Appalshop Films in Whitesburg, Kentucky, and reaccreditation consultant for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools. He worked extensively with the In-Service Education Program for the schools of Johnson County, Tennessee, and served as a lecturer, consultant, and facilitator to numerous other schools and organizations. On an off-campus scholarly assignment from 1982-83, Mielke attended classes at the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, conducting research on religion and education, and teaching a course entitled "Ministry to Rural Ethnic Minorities." During the 1989 to 1991 academic years, he submitted and directed the North Carolina Distinguished Scholars Grants for the College of Education-grants which focused on multicultural education in the college. Mielke's other service to Appalachian State included membership on the University Library and Instructional Services Committee, the Faculty Athletics Council, the committee on the establishment of a master's degree in Appalachian Studies, the Comparative Studies Committee of the International Studies Council, the task force on Appalachian Consortium Affairs, the Teacher Education Council, the Academic Policies and Procedures Committee, and the Appalachian Studies Center Advisory Committee. He also has an extensive list of publications. Dr. Mielke is a life member of the National Education Association, the Southern History of Education Society, and the South Atlantic Philosophy of Education Society. He also holds membership in the following honor societies: Phi Kappa Phi, Phi Delta Kappa (local chapter president), Alpha Kappa Delta, and Pi Sigma Alpha. Mielke has also been a member of the North Carolina Association of Educators, American Association of University Professors (local chapter treasurer), the National Council for the Study of Education, the Council of the Southern Mountains, and the National Association for Interdisciplinary Ethnic Studies (national vice president). In addition to university teaching and research efforts, Dr. Mielke was ordained a pastor in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (1986) and is currently serving as pastor in the North Carolina Synod. He is also the pastor of Low's Lutheran Church in eastern Guilford County. Mielke is married to the former Margaret Sue Mielke, and they have two children, Matthew David (September 4, 1972-) and Laura Lynn (August 7, 1975-). Matt received a Masters of Information Science from the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill and is a computer services administrator for the College of Arts and Sciences at Duke University, Durham, North Carolina. Laura received her Ph.D. degree in English from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and is an assistant professor of English at Kansas University in Lawrence. She married her college (St. Olaf College) sweetheart, Scott Hanrath, in 2000, and he is a system analyst at Kansas University. Laura and Scott have a son, Henry Robert, who was born February 21, 2007. Aside from his pastoral duties, Dr. Mielke teaches an occasional extension class for Appalachian State. His wife, Sue, teaches special education at the middle school level. In 2000, the Mielkes built a retirement home in Foscoe, which they greatly enjoy. Dr. Mielke's current research interest includes writing and contributing biographies of African-Americans to various biography projects, both in print and online. Mielke retired from Appalachian State in 1997 and received emeritus status at that time. Sources: Appalachian State University files and long association. -Dr. Richard D. Howe

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