Kelly Elaine Navies

Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture
Kelly Elaine Navies is an oral historian, writer, and poet. As Museum Specialist in oral history, she coordinates the Oral History Initiative at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Navies received her undergraduate degree in African American Studies from the University of California, Berkeley and a Master's in Library and Information Science from the Catholic University of America. She has also studied at the Southern Oral History Program (SOHP) as a graduate student in History at UNC Chapel Hill. Navies oral history projects and interviews are located at the SOHP, The Reginald F. Lewis Maryland Museum of African American History and Culture, the Washington DC Public Library Peoples Archive, and at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture. Her writing may be found in several publications including, June Jordan's Poetry for The People: A Revolutionary Blueprint, edited by Lauren Muller, Bum Rush the Page: A def poetry jam, edited by Tony Medina and Louis Reyes Rivera and Musical Crossroads: Stories Behind the Objects of African American Music by Dwandalyn Reece (2023). She is currently the President of the Oral History Association.

Experience

I have been a practicing oral historian for over 30 years. I began as a student in the African American Studies department at UC Berkeley. I also began formal study of poetry as an undergraduate. I was a founding member of June Jordan's Poetry for the People. In addition, I studied and work in the Southern Oral History Program as a graduate student in History at Chapel Hill.

Services

I offer oral history workshops: family oral histories, poetry and oral history, community oral history,

Languages

Regions Available for Work

Other Regions: Washington DC|| Maryland|| Virginia (DMV)

Purpose of Contact

  • I am available to answer questions, or provide mentorship to other oral historians
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