Roger Lowery was born in Parsons, Kansas and raised in a blue-collar industrial suburb on the metro-east side of St. Louis in the little oil-refinery town of Roxana, Illinois. His dad owned and operated a hardware store and his mom was the public librarian. After completing his bachelors and masters degrees in political science at SIUE, Lowery taught political science for a year at Missouri Southern State College (now University) in Joplin.
In 1969, Lowery was drafted into the U.S. Army. After basic training, he spent 10 months at Ft. McClellan, Alabama as a company clerk, first for the 4th MASH and then for the 365th medium truck company that moved them around. Next, the Army sent him to Vietnam where he was pulled out of the replacement depot by an 18th Military Policy Brigade courier who was that day rotating back home. After his release from active duty, Lowery completed a doctorate in political science at Washington University in St. Louis with specialties in American politics and research methods. His dissertation was titled, The Development of Race as a Political Issue: Changes in Opinion, Policy, and Electoral Behavior, 1944-1976.
In 1974, Lowery accepted a teaching position at UNC Wilmington with the political science department, joining two other full-time faculty (now the renamed the Department of Public & International Affairs has 15 full-time and four part-time faculty members). His recently taught course work includes: PLS 203, Religion and Politics in the U.S.; PLS 302, Public Opinion and American Democracy; PLS 303, Elections and Voting Behavior; PLS 401, Senior Seminar in Political Science; and PLS 405, Political Parties in the United States. He is the coauthor of a textbook, Library Research Guide to Political Science: With an Introduction to Legal Research for Undergraduates (1993), a book chapter, eight journal articles, and over a dozen conference presentations on various aspects of American politics. Since July of 2007, he has taken on the additional responsibilities of department chair. He and his lovely wife Pat (BA '67), a retired speech-language pathologist, enjoy traveling, hiking, kayaking, watching St. Louis Cardinals and Chicago Cubs baseball games, and playing with their four grandchildren.