M. Teresa Valero - Faculty & Adjuncts

M. Teresa Valero, MA

M. Teresa Valero, MA
Chapman Applied Professor of Art
College of Arts & Sciences
Art, Design and Art History
918-631-2740 Phillips Hall


MA – University of Kansas BFA – University of Kansas


M. Teresa Valero, a native of Venezuela, is an Applied Professor of Art, Graphic Design at The University of Tulsa where she is the Director of the School of Art, Design and Art History. She is co-founder and Creative Director of Third Floor Design, a student-run design studio that provides high-quality design services for nonprofit organizations in Tulsa and surrounding areas that recently celebrated 27 years of services. In 2017, Third Floor Design received a Proclamation by Mayor G.T. Bynum declaring Oct. 13 Third Floor Design Day. In 2019 Valero received the YWCA Pinnacle Woman of the Year Award and the Harwelden Liddy K. Doenges Individual Award given by ahha for outstanding contributions to the cultural life of Tulsa.
In 2013 Valero received the Governor’s Arts and Education Award for her contributions to the Arts in Oklahoma. In 2011 Valero received a Citation from the Oklahoma Legislature signed by Senator Judy Eason McIntyre for the work 3rd Floor Design had done for the Soulful Survivors brand identity. In the Spring 2010 Valero was one of four winners of the Newsmakers Award given by the Association of Women in Communication Tulsa Chapter for the Little Black Dress exhibit. In January 2009 Third Floor received the Eddy award given by the Tulsa Advertising Federation to organizations who have made significant contributions to the advertising industry in the pro-bono area and in May the John L. Everitt Non-Profit Award by the Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa. In 2001 she was awarded outstanding teaching award by The University of Tulsa, and again in 2003 by the Henry Kendall College of Arts and Sciences at TU. In 2007 Valero received the Pinnacle Award for the Arts and Humanities presented by the Women Foundation and the Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women. Most recently The University of Tulsa Third Floor Design program and local partnering organization Iron Gate received a 2016 Oklahoma Campus Compact State Award. TU and Iron Gate were honored for winning the Outstanding Community and Campus Collaboration category at the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education meeting

In addition to her teaching duties, she works as a photographer and graphic designer, winning many awards in advertising and design some include the Tulsa Addy Awards, Graphex, and Creativity Today. Valero’s photographs have been exhibited in Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Arizona, Texas, Georgia and Arkansas; overseas her work has been seen in Venezuela, Spain, Lebanon, Syria and Canada. She is a past president of Art Directors Club of Tulsa and an active member of the Tulsa arts community. She is a founding member and past board member of 108|Contemporary, the premiere craft and design gallery in the region. She is a member and former Chair of the Performing Arts Center Trust, the YWCA of Tulsa, the Tulsa Award for Theater Excellence, Living Arts of Tulsa, Arts Alliance Tulsa, the Hispanic Affairs Commission for the City of Tulsa, the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA) on the Cross-cultural Design, the American Advertising Federation Tulsa and most recently 108 Contemporary and Iron Gate; she contributes to many local community and arts organizations.
She has curated many exhibitions including the Little Black Dress: New Takes on a Timeless Classic and OUR Journey to America, a documentary photography show that is housed at YWCA Multi Cultural Center and had a second opening at the Williams Company in Tulsa. Journey to America is traveling across Oklahoma. In 1997, she curated A Woman’s Place is in the World in conjunction with Planned Parenthood conference of the same name.

She lives in Tulsa with her husband Ghayth Coussa and their son Valerio. She firmly believes in giving back to one’s community whatever that might be.

Teaching Interests

Graphic Design
Package Design
Identity Branding
Visual Design
Community Engagement
Service Learning
Innovation & Creativity

Professional Affiliations

  • Tulsa Artists Fellowship
  • Arts Alliance of Tulsa
  • YWCA
  • Tulsa Artists Coalition
  • Tulsa Photography Collective
  • Society for Photographic Education
  • Living Arts of Tulsa
  • Oklahomoa Visual Arts Coalition
  • Philbrook Museum of Art
  • International Design Museum, the Smithsonian Institute, Cooper Hewitt Museum
  • International Museum of Photography at George Eastman House
  • Art Directors Club of Tulsa
  • Gilcrease Museum
  • 108 Contemporary
  • American Advertising Federation Tulsa
  • American Institute of Graphic Arts
  • Circle Cinema

Awards & Honors

  • Citation of Excellence
  • Oklahoma Sudden Opportunity Fund
  • Ringer Bell Marketing Award, Southwest Region
  • Oklahoma Alliance for the Arts and Very Special Arts
  • Individual Artists Grants Project
  • Award of Excellence
  • Faculty Award
  • Outstanding Teaching Award
  • American Corporate Identity/10
  • Outstanding Teacher Award
  • Honorary Mortar Board Member
  • Excellence in Teaching Award
  • Travel across Oklahoma
  • Award Recognition
  • Creativity 34
  • Graphex Award
  • Addy Award
  • John L. Everitt non-Profit Award
  • Eddy Award
  • Pinnacle Award
  • Newsmakers Award
  • Annual Oklahoma Governor’s Arts Award in Arts and Education