Former Scholars

Our BBIP program has had some amazing scholars complete this program over the last couple years.


    Zanice Bond earned her Ph.D. in American Studies from the University of Kansas. She is currently an assistant professor of English at Tuskegee University, where she teaches first-year English composition, African American literature, Southern literature, and, most recently, Modern English Grammar and Linguistics. She is co-director of a two-year NEH grant Literary Legacies of Macon County and Tuskegee Institute: Zora Neale Hurston, Ralph W. Ellison, and Albert Murray.In 2017, she received a Fulbright-Hayes award to Chile and a Poetry Foundation Fellowship for the Furious Flower Center’s Legacy Seminar on Yusef Komunyakaa at James Madison University. Zanice’s research focuses on women in the civil rights movement. Her essay “‘Small Places Close to Home’: Gender, Class and Civil Rights Work--Mildred Bond Roxborough and the NAACP” was published in Tennessee Women: Their Lives, Their Times, Volume 2ed. Sarah L. Wilkerson Freeman and Beverly Greene Bond. GA: University of Georgia Press. She is revising her dissertation “Race, Place, and Family: Narratives of the Civil Rights Movement from Brownsville, Tennessee, and the Nation” for a book project.

    Dr. Tyechia Thompson received her PhD in English Literature from Howard University in 2017. Her digital projects include a geospatial literary tool for James Baldwin’s references to Paris, an Omeka exhibit of James Emanuel’s poetry, and a Scalar article examining a work of James Lamar. She has taught courses in African American literature, expository writing, and Hip Hop and the Black Experience at Howard University, James Madison University, and Loyola University. Dr. Thompson has received awards and funding from the Institute of Creativity, Arts, and Technology at Virginia Tech; Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations; African American History, Culture, and the Digital Humanities initiative at the University of Maryland College Park; the Digital Pedagogy Lab at Mary Washington University; and the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities at the University of Maryland College Park.

    Tabitha Parker is an assistant professor of English Literature and composition at Clark State Community College in Springfield, Ohio. A recent transplant from Gulf Coast State College in Panama City, Florida, she has been teaching in higher education for over eight years where much of her focus has been on African-American Literature and diversity initiatives on both a local and global scale. Mrs. Parker earned her bachelor’s degree in English Literature and a Master of Fine Arts in Writing from Lindenwood University in Saint Charles, Missouri, and a Graduate Certification in Multicultural and Transnational Literatures from East Carolina University. She has been a leader creating curriculum for African-American Literature courses at the collegiate level, and she regularly presents on topics of current cultural issues, particularly that of how the history of slavery in the U.S. continues to shape present day society. She was co-creator of the grant-funded DIVE program, which worked to promote diversity and inclusion for students seeking employment and mentorship within the Bay County area. Additionally, in 2016 she was co-winner of the Association of Florida College’s Equity Commission Best Practices for Diversity and Inclusion Studies, in regard to her work both inside and outside of the classroom. Currently, Mrs. Parker resides in Dayton, Ohio, with her husband and two children.

    Susan Weeber works on 20th- and 21st-century African American and Caribbean literature. Her current book project, Poetics of Interruption: Media and Form in Black Radical Literature, examines experimental Black diasporic literature’s engagement with other media, particularly music, film, and photography. Susan also writes about race and science fiction and the Haitian Revolution. Currently a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Oregon, Susan has also worked and taught at the University of Rochester and Pennsylvania State University.

    Seretha D. Williams, Ph.D. is professor of English and Women's and Gender Studies at Augusta University. She earned a M.A. and Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the University of Georgia. Her research areas are in Africana Studies, women's literature, trauma theory, the Black Chicago Renaissance, and the Black Arts Movement. She focuses on the work of Margaret Walker (Alexander). Dr. Williams is co-editor of the collection Afterimages of Slavery: Essays on Appearances in Recent American Films, Literature, Television and Other Media. Two recent publications, “Gary, Indiana on the Cusp of Greatness: Richard G. Hatcher and the National Black Political Convention of 1972” (2018) and “’Mother of Us Poets’: Margaret Walker and the Black Arts Movement” (forthcoming 2019) revisit the late 1960s and early 1970s in an attempt to include voices and political spaces frequently omitted from discussions of the Black Power and Black Arts movements. Additionally, Dr. Williams is a digital humanities fellow at Augusta University and a graduate student in Library Information Science at Valdosta State University.

    Serena Simpson is an artist and a scholar. She writes fiction and nonfiction; her narratives are deeply influenced by place and memory. Serena’s current research centers on 20th century african-american women's literature that reflects the necessity of kindred relationships in black women’s conception and expression of identity. She is a graduate fellow in the Litowitz Creative Writing MFA+MA program at Northwestern University. She previously earned an MA in Writing and Publishing at DePaul University and completed a BA in English with a minor in Creative Writing at Spelman College. She was recently awarded the Leon Forrest Prose Award in nonfiction by the Guild Literary Complex in Chicago.

    Sarah Mease received her B.A. in Literature and Language and Political Science from Virginia Tech in 2018. She is the current Digital Humanities Assistant within University Libraries at Virginia Tech, where she has outreach and research responsibilities to support the Digital Humanities and various library initiatives. Sarah additionally provides faculty and student support for the Digital Humanities in this role.

    Monet Timmons graduated from Emory University in 2018 with a B.A. in English and African American Studies. She is currently a second year English PhD student at the University of Delaware. Her research investigates 19th and 20th enslaved Black women and Black women writers in the archive with an emphasis on historical and public memory. In addition to archival research, Monet engages with digital scholarship to understand the lived experiences of Black women. She has curated digital exhibits pertaining to the activism and lecture circuit of Frances Ellen Watkins Harper and the correspondence between Alice Dunbar-Nelson and Edwina B. Kruse. Monet's interdisciplinary work considers the memory-work established 19th and 20th century Black women and the role of scholars to continue this work today.

    Megan Goins-Diouf specializes in Africana archives and black bibliography. She is a trained archivist and librarian, receiving her MSLIS degree from the Palmer School of Library and Information Science at the University of Long Island. She works at the Toledo Public Schools as a substitute teacher.

    Marina del Sol is a Master Instructor in the English Department at Howard University. She received a Ph.D. in Folklore and Anthropology from the Américo Paredes Center for Cultural Studies at The University of Texas at Austin and a B.A. in interdisciplinary studies from the University of California at Berkeley.  As a digital humanities scholar, Dr. del Sol’s work focuses on citizenship in the public sphere.  During the spring of 2021, she served as an Expert Specialist for “Ensuring Scholarly Access to Digital Records,” hosted by Virginia Tech and the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).  Her current project, “Zora Neale Hurston:  A Pre-Research Guide,” focuses on archival research, cultural documentation, and ethnographic writing.

    LaTonzia Evans is an Instructor of English at Mississippi Valley State University, and she is a PhD candidate in English at the University of Memphis. Her concentration is in Literary and Cultural studies with an emphasis in African American Literature. Her research interests include Women and Gender Studies, 19th Century, and Digital Humanities. LaTonzia earned her BS and MEd at William Carey University in Hattiesburg, MS.

    kYmberly Keeton is a native of Fort Worth, Texas. She is a graduate of the University of North Texas with a Master’s in Library Science. In her present role, she documents and archives African American narratives in Austin, Texas – The State Capitol. As the African American Community Archivist and Librarian at the Austin History Center, Austin Public Library, Keeton’s work is about forming collaborative partnerships, building relationships with the community, and collecting, archiving, and sharing experiences about Austin’s African American History in the state capitol. The art curator is also the founder of ART | library deco, an online African American digital art library. Keeton is the 2019 Honoree Recipient in of the Austin, Texas Civic Futures Award for Community Engagement and Inclusion. In addition, she is a 2019 Inductee into The Douglass Club of Austin, Texas – Mary Church Terrell District. Currently, kYmberly Keeton is writing a scholarly book about African American art & creative librarians as social advocates for change from the south. “I’m rebelling against being handed a career, like, “You’re the next this; you’re the next that.” I’m not the next anything, I’m the first me.” – kYmberly Keeton
Browse all