New Year, New Board Members

08 Jan 2021 5:57 PM | Hope Shannon (Administrator)

With each new year comes a slight change in leadership at the Urban History Association. Every December 31, seven members of the UHA Board of Directors finish their three-year terms, replaced the next day by a new cohort of seven. This past December 31-- the final day of 2020-- the seven who finished their board terms were: 

  • Jessica Elfenbein, University of South Carolina
  • Douglas J. Flowe, Washington University in St. Louis
  • Rocio Gomez, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Walter Greason, Monmouth University
  • Rachel Jean-Baptiste, University of California, Davis
  • Tracy Neumann, Wayne State University
  • Rachel Sturman, Bowdoin University

We extend our heartfelt thanks to our outgoing board members for their commitment and service. 

Replacing them, and joining our continuing board members, are: 

  • Luther Adams, University of Washington, Tacoma
    Luther Adams is a student and teacher of history and culture. His work emphasizes Black life. He is Associate Professor of Ethnic, Gender and Labor Studies at the University of Washington in Tacoma. He is grateful for the support provided by fellowships at the Walter Chapin Simpson Center for the Humanities; the New York Public Library; the Center for African American Urban Studies and the Economy at Carnegie Mellon University; the NEH Summer Institute on African American Civil Rights at Harvard University; and the Woodford R. Porter, Sr. Scholarship. He publishes research on police brutality, African American migration and religion, urban history, and Black history in Kentucky. He is author of Way Up North in Louisville: African American Migration in the Urban South, 1930-1970. Adams is writing NO JUSTICE NO PEACE, a history of African Americans’ struggles with and against police brutality.
  • René Luis Alvarez, Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago
    René Luís Alvarez is a Clinical Assistant Professor of History at the Arrupe College of Loyola University Chicago where he teaches survey courses in United States history, Western Civilization, and an Introduction to Mexican American History course beginning in Summer 2021. Dr. Alvarez earned his PhD in American history and a graduate certificate in Urban Studies from the University of Pennsylvania in 2008. His primary research examines the educational history of Mexican-origin populations in Chicago during the twentieth century. Dr. Alvarez is a former Spencer Foundation doctoral fellow and has received grants from the Illinois State Historical Society and the Sargent Shriver Institute at the University of Chicago. The National Center for Institutional Diversity at the University of Michigan has recognized Dr. Alvarez as an Exemplary Diversity Scholar. Dr. Alvarez’ past service to the UHA includes serving on the Local Arrangements Committee for the Eighth Biennial Meeting in Chicago in 2016; when he also led a tour of the Pilsen neighborhood, highlighting the Mexican heritage of the area. Dr. Alvarez also was the featured Member of the Week in The Metropole UHA blog in January 2018, and served on the Best Article Awards committee in 2012. Having been a proud member of the UHA for many years, Dr. Alvarez looks forward to contributing to the organization’s future as a Board member.

  • Lisa Krissoff Boehm, Bridgewater State University
    Lisa Krissoff Boehm is the Dean of the College of Graduate Studies and Professor of History at Bridgewater State University in Massachusetts. Previously she served as Founding Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences and Professor of History at Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York, Interim Dean, School of Humanities and Social Sciences and Professor of Urban Studies at Worcester State University, Senior Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Professor of History at Emmanuel College and Visiting Assistant Professor of History at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. She is the author of Making a Way out of No Way: African American Women and the Second Great Migration (Mississippi, 2009), Popular Culture and the Enduring Myth of Chicago (Routledge, 2004), The American Urban Reader: History and Theory (with Steven Corey, Routledge, 2010), and America's Urban History (with Steven Corey, Routledge, 2014 and 2020). She is at work on a historical novel and a book about gender and the city. Boehm served several times on the UHA dissertation committee and several of the planning committees for the bi-annual conference.

  • Julius L. Jones, Chicago History Museum
    Julius L. Jones is a historian, curator, lecturer, and digital media producer committed to telling new stories about the past in compelling and innovative ways. Julius is a PhD Candidate in the Department of History at The University of Chicago, where his scholarly interests include twentieth-century United States Social, Cultural and Urban History. His dissertation, “‘Ain’t Gonna Tarry Here Long’: African American Aspiration in Chicago, 1933–1968,” explores the idea that African Americans are the products of a culture that limits them on the basis of their race while simultaneously propagating notions of limitless possibilities and opportunities. This dichotomy creates liminal spaces between possibility and limitation, or sites of aspiration, where African Americans have sought not only to break down racial barriers to achieve success, but to assert their right to define success for themselves. Currently, Julius serves as an Assistant Curator at the Chicago History Museum, where he develops exhibition content, conducts research, seeks new acquisitions, and speaks on a variety of Chicago history topics. He also serves as a lecturer in the Department of Black Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago and in the Master of Arts Program in the Social Sciences at The University of Chicago. He earned his MA in History at the University of Chicago in 2018 and an AB in History and African and African American Studies from Duke University in 2012.
  • Lisa Keller, Purchase College, SUNY
    Lisa Keller is Professor of History at Purchase College, State University of New York. From 2008 to 2019 she served as the Associate Director of the Herbert H. Lehman Center for American History at Columbia University, where she is Chair of the Seminar on the City, University Seminars. She is Executive Editor of the Encyclopedia of New York City(2nd edition, December. 2010). She specializes in trans-Atlantic (the U.S. and Great Britain) urban/suburban history and women’s history. She has written books, articles, and op-eds on New York, London, and Westchester County. Her book Triumph of Order: Democracy and Public Space in New York and London received the Urban History Association’s Kenneth Jackson Award for Best Book in North American Urban History in 2009 and the Herbert H. Lehman Award for Distinguished Scholarship from the New York Academy of History in 2012. She is the recipient of the State University of New York Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Faculty Service (2005), a Gilder-Lehrman Fellowship in American Civilization (2000), and an NEH grant for local history (1996). She has a BA from Vassar College and a PhD from Cambridge University. 

  • Johana Londoño, University at Albany, SUNY
    Johana Londoño is an assistant professor in the Department of Latin American, Caribbean, and US Latina/o Studies at the University at Albany, SUNY. She received a PhD from the American Studies Program at NYU and a BFA from the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art. Her research interests include Latinx studies, comparative ethnic studies, race, urban studies, aesthetics, and urban design. Her publications appear in the edited volumes Latino Urbanism: The Politics of Planning, Policy and Redevelopment (2012) and Race and Retail: Consumption across the Color Line (2015) and in journals including American Quarterly, Identities: Global Studies in Culture and Power,Latino Studies, and Social Semiotics. She has received fellowships from the Ford Foundation, Princeton-Mellon Initiative in Architecture, Urbanism, and the Humanities, Northeast Consortium for Faculty Diversity at Northeastern University, and NYU, among other institutions. Londoño is most recently the author of Abstract Barrios: The Crises of Latinx Visibility in Cities (Duke University Press, 2020). 

  • Kyle Roberts, American Philosophical Society Library and Museum
    Kyle Roberts is the Associate Director of Library and Museum Programming of the American Philosophical Society Library and Museum in Philadelphia. Dr. Roberts helps to integrate the programming departments of the Library, which manage scholarly programming and digital outreach, with those of the Museum, which oversee education programming and adult learning. Prior to coming to the APS Library and Museum, Dr. Roberts was an Associate Professor of Public History and New Media and Director of the Center for Textual Studies and Digital Humanities at Loyola University Chicago. A scholar of urban religion, cities, and print, he is the author of Evangelical Gotham: Religion and the Making of New York City, 1783-1860 (Chicago, 2016) and the co-editor, with Stephen Schloesser, of Crossings and Dwellings: Restored Jesuits, Women Religious, American Experience 1814-2014 (Brill, 2017) and, with Mark Towsey, of Before the Public Library: Reading, Community, and Identity in the Atlantic World, 1650-1850 (Brill, 2017). Dr. Roberts is an accomplished public historian and digital humanist who is the Director of the Jesuit Libraries Provenance Project. He is currently working on a history of urban Catholicism told through the lens of a library collected in the 1870s by the Jesuits at St. Ignatius College (precursor to modern-day Loyola University Chicago).

Please join us in welcoming our newest board members. Their terms run from January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2023. For a full list of the UHA's officers and directors, click here

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