I have been an oral history practitioner since 2002. I have worked on many oral history projects for the Regional Oral History Office (ROHO) at the University of California, Berkeley and at the University of Mary Washington.
Mary Washington Healthcare Oral History Project
In 2013, I launched an oral history project that examines health care in the greater Fredericksburg region, the history of hospital-based medicine, and the history of Mary Washington Healthcare (formerly MWH MediCorp and MediCorp Health System) since the 1980s. The project will include 45 interviews and 100 recorded hours. The project website is mwhchistory.com.
Rosie The Riveter / World War II Home Front Oral History Project
Beginning in 2001, the Regional Oral History Office (ROHO) at the University of California, Berkeley and the National Park Service (NPS) began a large scale oral history research project to document home front experiences during World War II. The interviews are part of the Rosie the Riveter/World War II Home Front National Historical Park in Richmond, California. and are publicly available through ROHO’s website. ROHO has conducted over two hundred interviews, not only documenting personal experiences, but also critically engaging historical frameworks of economic expansion, urbanization, migration, labor relations, race relations, gender, family life, and religion. I worked on the Rosie project from 2002 to 2008 and served as lead interviewer and project manager from 2007 to 2008.
Rosie The Riveter / World War II Home Front Oral History Research
My fall 2012 oral history course focused on the World War II home front culminated with the launch of a Rosie the Riveter Website (rosietheriveter.umw.edu). Students in the course conducted twenty-five interviews. The site contains interview transcripts, complete video or audio recordings, and other resources.
Women's and Gender Studies at the University of Mary Washington
The University of Mary Washington established a new major in Women’s and Gender Studies in 2010. The project was a culmination point for my fall 2010 oral history course. Students in this course studied oral history methodology and the history of Women’s Studies at colleges and universities. Students interviewed faculty and staff on the founding of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of Mary Washington. Interview transcripts and videos are available on the website.
James Farmer's Teaching and Legacy at the University of Mary Washington
James L. Farmer Jr., founder of the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and lifelong civil rights activist, was Commonwealth Professor of History at Mary Washington College (now the University of Mary Washington) from 1985 to 1999. Farmer began teaching at Mary Washington as he was completing his autobiography, Lay Bare the Heart. In University of Mary Washington: A Centennial History, 1908-2008, Dr. William B. Crawley Jr., writes, “Farmer’s impact upon Mary Washington College was extraordinary. From the moment of his arrival on campus, he regularly taught more students per class than any member of the faculty. They sat enthralled as the matchless storyteller related from personal experience the drama of the civil rights movement, leaving his audience alternately appalled by his descriptions of the hatred and violence he encountered and amazed by the good humor he still somehow managed to convey.” The oral history interviews on this website further document Farmer’s legacy at the University of Mary Washington. All of the interviews were conducted by students in senior seminar I taught in fall 2009, Oral History and James Farmer. Students in the course interviewed faculty, staff, and former students about Farmer’s contributions to UMW, wrote essays analyzing the interviews, and built this website.
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) Oral History Project
The Regional Oral History Office at the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley partnered with the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to document the history of the museum on the occasion of its 75th anniversary in 2010. Founded in 1935, SFMOMA was the first museum on the West Coast devoted to exhibiting and collecting work by both modern masters and younger, less-established artists. Fifty-four interviews with directors past and present, curators, board members, collectors, dealers, artists, and museum staff document the museum’s history. I worked on this project from 2006 to 2008 and conducted fourteen interviews.
Oakland Army Base Oral History Project
The Oakland Army Base Oral History Project documents the core functions of the base during its period of operation (1941-1998); the social life and work culture on the base; the impact of the base on the surrounding area, from the community of West Oakland to the Pacific Rim; and the process of base closure and realignment. I conducted six interviews for the project, which had two hundred hours of interviews. In 2010, the Bancroft Library published a book on the Oakland Army Base interviews edited by Martin Meeker.
Community-Based Arts Oral History Project
In 2006 and 2007, I conducted a series of interviews documenting the Siskiyou County Peace Mural, which was unveiled in Mt. Shasta, California, in 2007. The interviews are with the lead artist, project coordinator, contributing artists, and community members who participated in the project. The narrators recount the process of designing the mural, enlisting community support, coordinating the contributions of volunteers, and then finding a permanent site for the mural. The perspectives of community collaborators fill out the story of how one community responded to the beginning of the Iraq War by participating in a public art project that required sharing the many different ideas of peace held by residents of the Mt. Shasta region.