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African & African-American Studies


Learn more about the Africa & African-American Studies program faculty, which draws from a wide variety of academic departments and is committed to an interdisciplinary approach to the study of the people, institutions, and concerns linking African diaspora.

Matthew Nichter, PhD

Matthew Nichter, PhD

Assistant Professor of Sociology and Coordinator of Africa and African-American Studies

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 111

T. 407.646.2286

BA, Brown University
MS, University of Wisconsin - Madison
PhD, University of Wisconsin - Madison

Matthew Nichter is a historical sociologist who teaches courses on inequality and social movements. His research focuses on the relationship between the African-American freedom struggle, labor unions, and the socialist movement. Read his article "Did Emmett Till Die in Vain? Organized Labor Says No!" here.

Amy Armenia, PhD

Amy Armenia, PhD

Professor of Sociology

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 115

T. 407.646.2277

BS, University of Massachusetts Amherst
MA, University of Massachusetts Amherst
PhD, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Dr. Armenia's research focuses on the intersection of family and work, including the challenges and contradictions faced by those who do paid care work.  She teaches courses on family, race and ethnicity, and poverty and social welfare.

Wendy Brandon, PhD

Wendy Brandon, PhD

Associate Professor of Education

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 108

T. 407.646.2313

EdD, Teachers College, Columbia University

Professor Brandon's teaching areas include sociology of education, gendered citizenship and education, feminist research methodologies, and qualitative inquiry in education.  Her research addresses the relationships between social class, race, and gender in school success and education, and equality in a global context.

Shan-Estelle Brown, PhD

Shan-Estelle Brown, PhD

Assistant Professor of Anthropology

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 101

T. 407.646.2646

BA, Yale University
MA, Old Dominion University
PhD, University of Connecticut

Dr. Brown specializes in medical anthropology and co-directs the Global Health minor. Her research specialties include the patient-provider relationship, health disparities, chronic illness, self-treatment, acceptability of treatments, global health, HIV, addiction, sickle cell disease, healthcare innovation technology, healthcare user experience (UX).

Victoria Brown, PhD

Victoria Brown, PhD

Assistant Professor of English

Carnegie Hall - Office 115

T. 407.646.2047


Dr. Brown teaches fiction and creative nonfiction. In addition to creative writing, she also teaches transnational literature with a focus on contemporary Caribbean writers and post-colonial theory. She is the author of the novel, Minding Ben (Hyperion, 2011), and has published numerous short stories and works of creative nonfiction.

Nancy Decker, PhD

Nancy Decker, PhD

Associate Professor of German

Hauck Hall - Office 202

T. 407.646.2410

BA in German, College of William and Mary
MA and PhD in German Studies, Cornell University

Dr. Decker has focused her research on German colonialism in Africa. She has traveled particularly to Namibia, a former Germancolony, to investigate German women to emigrated to what was then German  Southwest Africa.  She has also directed field studies to Namibia.

Zack Gilmore, PhD

Zack Gilmore, PhD

Assistant Professor of Anthropology

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) – Office 112

T. 407.691.1314

BA, Texas A&M University
MA, Southern Illinois University
PhD, University of Florida

Specializations: Anthropological archaeology, archaeology of pre-Columbian Florida and the Southeastern U.S., Late Archaic period (3700-1500 B.C.) social history, materiality & memory, microhistory & events, long-distance exchange, and early pottery technology & provenance.

Jonathan Harwell

Jonathan Harwell

Assistant Professor, Head of Collections & Systems

Olin - Office 109

T. 407.646.2148

MLIS, University of Alabama
MA in Social Science - Georgia Southern University 

Jonathan Harwell manages a department that provides most of Olin Library’s services that happen behind the scenes.  He also works with faculty to teach students how to do research.  His passion is making sure the library provides all the information that Rollins needs.  He and his team strive to get books and articles before people ask us for them; and to get some things from other libraries.

J. Scott Hewit, PhD

J. Scott Hewit, PhD

Associate Professor and Director of Teacher Education

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 243

T. 407.646.2300

BS, SUNY Plattsburgh
MS, Indiana University
EdD, Ball State Univeristy

Dr. Hewit teaches courses in instructional strategies, special needs, and curriculum. His research interests include candidate impact on P-12 student learning, public policy, and education in Rwanda.

Ja'Nya Jenoch, PhD

Visiting Assistant Professor

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 113

T. 407.646.1510

MA, St. John’s University
BS, McGill University
Jill Jones, PhD

Jill Jones, PhD

Professor of English

Carneige Hall - Office 103

T. 407.646.2528

BA, University of New Hampshire
MA, University of New Hampshire
PhD, Tufts University

Jill Colvin Jones is Professor of English at Rollins College where she teaches courses that include American Literature, popular culture, and African-American Literature; also, Monsters in Literature and Film, Mean Girls, and Breaking Bad and the Great American Novel. Jones has published articles and chapters on mystery novels, Zora Neale Hurston, Harriet E. Wilson, Toni Morrison, Majorie Kinnan Rawlings, James Weldon Johnson, Connie May Fowler, and Jerry Springer and the Puritans. She also pops off in the press from time to time, from The New York Times to the Orlando Sentinel, and you can find her on podcasts and local television stations giving her opinions on Hurston, Hemingway, Huckabee, and hair products.

Ashley Kistler, PhD

Ashley Kistler, PhD

Professor of Anthropology

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 105

T. 407.691.1707

BA, Muhlenberg College 
MA, Florida State University
PhD, Florida State University

Cultural and linguistic anthropology, Mesoamerica, the Maya, economic anthropology, kinship, gender, collaborative ethnography, Latin American and Caribbean courses.

Emmanuel Kodzi, PhD

Emmanuel Kodzi, PhD

Associate Professor of International Business

170 W. Fairbanks - Office 207

T. 407.646.1989

BS/MS, University of Science and Technology
MBA, University of Ghana
PhD, Purdue University
Post Doc, University of Florida

My passion is to inspire deep learning and come alongside students as they develop skills in evidence-based decision-making. My work in academia is preceded by over a decade in technical and executive roles, managing made-to-order office furnishing projects. I have now taught operations management and related subjects in 4 countries to undergrads, graduate students, and practicing executives representing over 30 countries. My research interests include international expansion, operational alignment in service and social businesses, and supplier performance improvement in emerging economies.

Susan Libby, PhD

Susan Libby, PhD

Professor of Art History

Cornell Fine Arts Center - Office 121D

T. 407.646.2448

MA, University of Maryland
PhD, University of Maryland

European and American Art from the 18th through the 20th centuries; current research focuses on the visual and material culture of French Caribbean slavery.

Lucy Littler

Lucy Littler


Orlando Hall - Office 102

T. 407.646.2502

BA, North Carolina State University
MA, Appalachian State University
PhD, Florida State University

Dr. Littler's field is twentieth-century American literature. Her research and teaching interests include American exceptionalism and the meanings of race in contemporary American culture.

Julia Maskivker, PhD

Associate Professor of Political Science

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 236

T. 407.646.2158

BA, Political Science, Universidad Torcuato Di Tella, Buenos Aires, Argentina
MA, Political Science, Columbia University
MPhil, Political Science, Columbia University
PhD, Political Science, Columbia University

Contemporary Analytic Social and Political Philosophy: Theories of Justice, Global Ethics, Ethical Foundations of Social Policy and the Welfare State; Democratic Theory, Modern Political Thought

MacKenzie Moon Ryan, PhD

MacKenzie Moon Ryan, PhD

Assistant Professor of Art History, Ward Faculty-in-Residence, Faculty Director of the Living Learning Community Program

Cornell Fine Arts Center - Office 121B

T. 407.646.2274

BA, Hamline University
MA, University of Florida
PhD, University of Florida

History of African and global art, with particular interest in textiles, fashion, trade, colonialism, cross-cultural exchange, and museum studies; research focuses on global networks of trade, African textiles and fashion, especially kanga cloth, and consumption of commodities to create conceptions of self.

Rachel Newcomb, PhD

Rachel Newcomb, PhD

Professor of Anthropology

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) – Office 106

T. 407.691.1703

BA, Davidson College
MA, Johns Hopkins University
MA, PhD, Princeton University

Specializations: Cultural and applied/public anthropology, Middle East and North Africa, gender, Islam, modernity, globalization, and identity.

Leslie Kemp Poole, PhD

Leslie Kemp Poole, PhD

Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies

Beal Maltbie Center - Office 105

T. 407.691.1679

BS, Journalism, University of Florida, 1978
MLS, Rollins College, 1991
PhD, University of Florida, 2012

Professional interests and specializations include the history of the environmental movement, particularly the grassroots organizers that, in Florida and across the country, included many women.  Dr. Poole's teaching and interests include environmental justice.  Author of "Saving Florida: Women's Fight for the Environment in the Twentieth Century." In her spare time, she likes to hike and kayak around the state.
Paul Reich, PhD

Paul Reich, PhD

Associate Professor

Carnegie Hall - Office 101

T. 407.691.1273

AB, Rollins College
MA, Purdue University
PhD, Purdue University

Professor Reich's areas of teaching and research include late 19th and 20th century American literature, African American literature, the American West, interdisciplinary studies and popular culture.

Dawn Roe, PhD

Dawn Roe, PhD

Associate Professor of Art

Cornell Fine Arts Center - Office 106

T. 407.691.1241

BFA, Marylhurst University
MFA, Illinois State University

Photography and digital imaging courses that align with the practice and content of lens-based media. Research focuses upon temporality, memory and perception in relation to the camera image. Work is exhibited regularly throughout the U.S. and internationally.​

Joshua Savala, PhD

Joshua Savala, PhD

Assistant Professor of History

Cornell Hall for Social Sciences (CSS) - Office 203

T. 407.646.1378

Areas of Specialization: Modern Latin America, Peru, Chile, labor and working-class history, oceans in history, social movements.
Claire Strom, PhD

Claire Strom, PhD

Rapetti-Trunzo Professor of History

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 203

T. 407.646.2270

BA, Oxford University
MA, Oxford University
PhD, Iowa State University

Agricultural history, the American South, and the progressive era.

Zeynep Teymuroglu, PhD

Zeynep Teymuroglu, PhD

Assistant Professor of Mathematics

Bush - Office 114C

T. 407.646.2659

PhD, University of Cincinnati

Zeynep Teymuroglu earned her Ph.D. at the University of Cincinnati. Her Ph.D. research was in applied and computational mathematics with an emphasis on mathematical biology. After graduation, she worked as an Associate Manager at the Research and Development department of a market research company. She also has her master's in mathematics with an emphasis on Financial Mathematics. Her research interests are mathematical biology, mathematical modeling, and financial mathematics. She teaches Calculus, Differential Equations, and Applied Mathematics courses.

Lisa Tillmann, PhD

Lisa Tillmann, PhD

Professor of Critical Media & Cultural Studies

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 145

T. 407.646.1586

BA, Marquette University
PhD, University of South Florida    

Lisa M. Tillmann, PhD, is an activist researcher, social justice documentary filmmaker, and professor of Critical Media and Cultural Studies (CMC), a program she founded at Rollins College. Grounded in values of peace, equity, and justice, CMC examines the world’s most pressing issues and challenges and helps students envision ways to work toward change. On campus and in central Florida, Dr. Tillmann has participated in numerous activist initiatives, many centering on civil rights. 

Robert Vander Poppen, PhD

Associate Professor of Classical Art & Archaeology, Archaeology Program Coordinator

Cornell Fine Arts Center - Office 121A

T. 407.646.2602

Professor Vander Poppen teaches courses in ancient art and archaeology including the areas of Egypt, the Near East, Greece, and Rome with a particular interest in the negotiation of social and cultural tensions between imperial powers and native communities. His current research focuses on the Etruscan culture of Pre-Roman Central Italy, and the creation and maintenance of power structures within the region.
Anca M. Voicu, PhD

Anca M. Voicu, PhD

Professor of Economics

Cornell Social Sciences Building (CSS) - Office 272

T. 407.691.1758

BA, Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest (RO)
Post Graduate Certificate Université Catholique de Fribourg
PhD, The University of Birmingham

Research Interests: international trade theory and policy, genetic algorithms applied to trade modeling, empirical trade models of the inter-war years, the impact of trade on the environment, economics and culture.

Tonia Warnecke, PhD

Associate Professor; Director, Social Entrepreneurship

Kathleen W. Rollins Hall - Office 216

T. 407.691.1285

BA, Rollins College
MA, University of Notre Dame
MPIA, University of Pittsburgh
PhD, University of Notre Dame

Dr. Warnecke is an economist specializing in international development processes and policy. She teaches courses on Global Development, Globalization and Gender, and Social Entrepreneurship. Her research is interdisciplinary and policy-oriented, focusing on gender and development issues.

Rachel Walton

Rachel Walton

Assistant Professor Digital Archivist & Record Management Coordinator

Olin 107

T. 407.691.1127

BA, in History and Minor in Art History - University of Florida
MS, in Information and Library Science - University of North Carolina
MA, in Latin American History - University of Florida 

I am a Digital Archivist and Librarian at Rollins College's Olin Library. In that role I work to acquire, reserve, and provide access to the College's digital assets. This includes, but is not limited to, digitized materials related to the history of the college, the published and unpublished work of its faculty and students, and any electronic records that merit long term retention. I also teach information literacy classes, meet with patrons one-on-one for research consultations, and co-lead digital humanities projects across campus.