Professor, Department Chair

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.


BA, Marquette University
PhD, University of South Florida

Lisa Tillmann, PhD portrait

Research & Publications

As her teaching does, Dr. Tillmann's research centers on social issues related to inequity and injustice. She has published four books, Between Gay and Straight: Understanding Friendship across Sexual OrientationIn Solidarity: Friendship, Family, and Activism Beyond Gay and Straight, Advances in Autoethnography and Narrative Inquiry: Reflections on the Legacy of Carolyn Ellis and Arthur Bochner (coedited with Tony E. Adams and Robin M. Boylorn), and Mindful Activism: Autoethnographies of Social Justice Communication for Campus and Community Transformation (coauthored with Kathryn Norsworthy and Steve Schoen).

Dr. Tillmann also identifies as a social justice documentary filmmaker, having produced the films College Crucible and Weight Problem: Cultural Narratives of Fat and “Obesity,” and co-produced the films Off the Menu: Challenging the Politics and Economics of Body and Food and Remembering a Cool September (about LGBTQ+ civil rights). Students played key roles in each of those films.

She also co-produced a music video, “Ode to Academic Labor.”

If any of this sounds meaningful, exciting, and fun, CMC might be a good fit for you!

Courses Taught