Past Summer Short-term Fellows: 2015-2019


Ashley Dennis
PhD Candidate, Department of African American Studies, Northwestern University
Project Title:  More Than Teachers: The Intellectual Thought and Activism of Black Women Educators in Chicago, 1930-1967

Olivia Hagedorn
PhD Candidate, Department of History, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Project Title: “Call Me African”: Black Women and Diasporic Cultural Feminism in Chicago, 1930-1980

Thabiti Lewis
Associate Professor of English, Washington State University, Vancouver
Project Title: Chicago and the Black Arts Movement

Sasha Phyars-Burgess
Diane Danmeyer Fellow, Columbia College Chicago
Project Title:  Untitled Photography Project in Austin, Chicago

Tyler Schmidt
Associate Professor of English, Lehman College CUNY
Project Title: Midwest Make Believe: The Practices of Queer Regionalism


Instead of hosting a Summer 2018 Fellows, we celebrated the success of this program with a reunion of former Fellows. The BMRC Summer Short-term Fellows Reunion and National Gathering of African American Studies Scholars was held in concurrence with the Annual Meeting of the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH). The program of the event is available as a PDF.


The subject areas were: Gospel Music; Design, Urban Design and Architecture

William Adams
Ph.D. Candidate, American Studies, University of Kansas
Project title: Windy City Heroines: Black Women’s Activism During the Harold Washington Campaign in 1983

LaVerne Gray
Ph.D. Candidate, College of Communication and Information, School of Information Science, University of Tennessee Knoxville
Project title: In a Collective Voice: Uncovering Community-Based Information Environments of African American Activists-Mothers in Chicago Public Housing, 1955-1970

Nicholas Kryczka
Ph.D. Candidate, Department of History, University of Chicago
Project title: Renewal by Choice: Schools, Space, and the Black Metropolis in Post-Civil Rights Chicago

Ruby Mendenhall
Ph.D., Sociology and African American Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Project title: The Role of Architecture and Urban Planning in the Connection between Race, Space and Health in African American Communities in Chicago

Shannon Missick
Ph.D. Candidate, Department of History at the University at Albany, State University of New York
Project title: The Evolution of a Desert: A History of Food Access in Chicago, 1945-1999

Amani Morrison
Ph.D. Candidate, African American and African Diaspora Studies, University of California, Berkeley
Project title: Domestic Architecture and Spatial Performance in Great Migration Chicago

Eric Peterson
Ph.D. Candidate in Architecture, University of California, Berkeley
Project title: Black Design and Housing Activism in 1960s Chicago

Ashlie Sandoval
Ph.D. Candidate, Performance Studies, Northwestern University
Project title: Staging Equity: The Evolution of Carceral Architecture in African American Communities in Chicago

Dr. E. James West
Teaching Fellow, University of Birmingham
Project title: Black Media Architecture in Chicago

Douglas Williams
Postdoctoral Research Associate, College of Applied Health Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Project title: Chiseling, Welding, and Painting: A Chicago Landscape’s Casting of a Black Artist

Sonja Williams
Professor/Assistant Chair, Howard University, Washington D.C.
Project title: Affirmative Lives


The subject areas were: Politics; Medical Arts and Public Health


Misty De Berry
Doctoral Student, Northwestern University, Department of Performance Studies
Project title: The Black Feminist Avant-Garde and Socially Engaged Art in Chicago, 1930s-1950s 

Gordon K. Mantler, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Writing and of History, The George Washington University
Project title: We Have Won: Harold Washington and Multiracial Politics in the Age of Reagan

David Miguel Molina
Doctoral candidate in the Rhetoric and Public Culture Program, Northwestern University
Project title: A Complex Unity: Chicago Social Movements and the Uses of “Coalition,” 1965-1975

Nichole Nelson
Doctoral Student in History, Yale University
Project title: Critical Crossroads: Three Suburbs’ Journeys to intentionally Racially Integrate

Melanie Newport
Ph.D. Candidate, Temple University, Department of History
Project title: Cook County Jail: Racism, Violence, and the Dangerous History of Jail Reform

Kevin Taber
Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Political Science, Indiana University
Project Title: Politics of the “New” African Diaspora: The Evolution of Political Activities and Activism among Chicago’s African Migrant Associations 

Medical Arts/Public Health

Nathan D. Kuehnl
Ph.D. Candidate, African American History, Wayne State University
Project title: Health and the Color Line in Postwar America

Naa Oyo A. Kwate, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Africana Studies; Associate Professor of Human Ecology; Associate Director, Center for Race and Ethnicity, Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey
Project title: The Cost of the Burger: Fast Food in Black Urban Neighborhoods, 1955-1995 

Lisa J. Young
Ph.D. Candidate, Department of American Studies, Purdue University
Project title: Mapping Black Women’s Grassroots Health Activism in Chicago, 1930-1980

Other Subjects

Rami Gabriel, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Psychology, Department of Humanities, History, and Social Science, Columbia College Chicago
Project title: The Sounds of Chicago, Black Metropolis

Ayinde Jean-Baptiste
Independent Audio Documentarian
Project title: DuSable City


The subject areas were: The Great Migration; Journalism, Writing and Publishing

The Great Migration

Diane Jones Allen, D. Eng., RLA, ASLA
Instructor, Louisiana State University; Robert Reich School of Landscape Architecture; College of Art and Design, Louisiana State University
Project title: Transit Deserts: Neighborhood Form, Transportation Access, and Forced Migration

Jessica Auer
PhD Student, Department of History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Project title: Chasing Freedom, Finding Work: Gender, Mobility, and Labor in Postwar Chicago

Neil Clarke
Brooklyn New York. Independent Scholar w/ Center for Black Music Research
Project title: Rethinking the Presence of the African Drum in North America

Kevin Loughran
Northwestern University, Department of Sociology
Project title: The Great Migration, Public Space, and American Cities, 1940-70

Megan Rigsby Klein
PhD student, Department of Sociology. Loyola University Chicago
Project title: The Irony of Integration: Race, Politics and the Disintegration of a Constructed Community

Anita J. Mixon, PhD
Department of Communication, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Project title: “Woman’s Work”: Urban Activism in Bronzeville, 1919-1939

Amani Morrison
PhD Candidate, University of California, Berkeley
Project title: Constructing Selfhood, Remaking Home: Black Aspirational Identities and Chicago’s Great Migration

Carlos Javier Ortiz
Visual Artist, Chicago, Illinois
Project title: From Mississippi to Aunt May’s Place: The Great Migration Then and Now


Kim Bobier
Art History, PhD Candidate, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC
Project title: Mediating the Civil Rights Movement: Kerry James Marshall’s Souvenir Paintings & Chicago Journalism

James West
University of Manchester, Liverpool, United Kingdom
Project title: Listen to the Blood: Ebony Magazine and the Making and Selling of Modern Black History

Samuel Edward Gale
PhD Candidate, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Project title: It’s a Press Victory: The African American Press’ Coverage of Black Sports and the Struggle for Racial Equality

Jennifer Scism Ash
Graduate Student in History/Gender & Women’s Studies, University of Illinois at Chicago
Project title: HBCU Queens, Journalists, and Black Freedom: The Gendered Politics Behind the Publication and Content of Chicago’s Ebony Magazine, 1955-1980s

Kim Gallon
Assistant Professor of History, Purdue University
Project title: The Chicago Defender’s Standing Dealers List Map

Other Subjects

Katrina E. Greene
Ph.D. student, Department of Art History, University of Delaware
Project title: From the American Art Colony in France to Bronzeville: The Transnational, Multi-media Mentorship of William Edouard Scott under Henry Ossawa Tanner, 1910-1930