OHA NEH Fellowship Program Announcement

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April 5, 2022

The Oral History Association announces the recipients of eleven year-long fellowships, funded by an $825,000 grant from the NEH American Rescue Plan.

In October 2021 the Oral History Association was awarded $825,000 from the National Endowment for the Humanities through the American Rescue Plan: Humanities Grantmaking [Funding Opportunity Number: 20210513-ARPG]  for a project titled “Diversifying Oral History Practice: A Fellowship Program for Under/Unemployed Oral Historians.” Oral historians from communities which have been historically marginalized in the field (such as Indigenous peoples, people of color, people with disabilities, and working class people) were particularly invited to apply. Applicants were encouraged to propose projects grounded in partnerships with communities and organizations.

OHA has awarded eleven year-long fellowships of $60,000. In addition to the fellowship award, fellows will be provided with mentoring, research funds, training, and a supportive cohort experience. 

Please join us in congratulating Elizabeth A. Castle, Angela Darlean LeBlanc-Ernest, Colette Denali Montoya-Sloan, Virginia Espino, Fernanda Espinosa, Fanny Julissa Garcia, Lynn Lewis, Marta V. Martínez, Danita Mason-Hogans, Veronica Pasfield, and Tea Rozman.

Fellows will be working with 

recently-arrived Afghan refugees resettled in Minnesota,
homeless activists in NYC,
Indigenous Wabanaki peoples in Maine,
families separated by U.S. immigration policies,
Indian Boarding School survivors,
and working class Latinx, Afro-Latinx and Indigenous people in Los Angeles, 

And projects will include the creation of 

an emerging Latino/Latinx Oral Historians Fellowship Program in Rhode Island,
a critical oral history of Chapel Hill and the University of North Carolina,
a collaborative oral history of stopping Uranium mining in the Black Hills,
a multimedia history of the Black Panther Party’s Oakland Community School,
and a new blueprint for institutional approaches to collecting inclusively and intersectionally.

Taken together, these fellows and these projects will make significant contributions to decolonizing the field of oral history through developing inclusive networks, methodologies, and stories.

Full bios and project descriptions are available at https://oralhistory.org/2022/04/04/oha-neh-fellowship-winners/.

We especially thank the selection committee – Paul Ortiz, Sara Sinclair, Dao Tran, Brian Greenwald, Robert Luckett, Marie Cochran, Daisy Herrera – for their hard work evaluating the many compelling applications received.

Louis Kyriakoudes, Director of The Albert Gore Research Center & Professor of History at Middle Tennessee State University and Co-Executive Director of OHA, and Amy Starecheski, Director of the Columbia University Oral History Master of Arts Program and 2021-22 President of the OHA, serve as Co-Principal Investigators on the grant. Kelly Elaine Navies, Oral Historian at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture and First Vice-President of OHA, chairs the selection committee.

As a part of this funding series, OHA will also be awarding up to a dozen smaller grants (recipients to be announced in April) to support research into the history and current dynamics of the field of oral history, with the aim of creating knowledge that can be deployed to create a more equitable and inclusive field.

The Oral History Association is thrilled to have this opportunity to provide support for oral historians while also implementing our 2020 strategic plan, which centers on making our field inclusive and equitable through building an organization which 

  • is a transparent, inclusive, responsive, and valued resource with a growing body of diverse leaders and practitioners.
  • is a nationally and internationally recognized advocate for oral history and a champion for the development and well-being of oral history practitioners and programs. 
  • develops relevant, accessible, and innovative programming that enhances practitioners’ ability to do meaningful oral history work.

Louis Kyriakoudes, Louis.Kyriakoudes@mtsu.edu 615-898-2633
Kelly Navies, NaviesK@si.edu
Amy Starecheski, aas39@columbia.edu 212-851-4395

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