In Memoriam: Katherine Johanna Hagedorn, 1961-2013

katherine-hagedorn-300Katherine Hagedorn, professor of music and director of the ethnomusicology program at Pomona College in Claremont, California, died at her home in Claremont from complications of cancer. She was 52 years old.

After being hired in 1993, Dr. Hagedorn spent her entire academic career as a faculty member at Pomona College. She served for three years as associate dean of the college and from 2003 to 2005 she was the co-coordinator of the gender and women’s studies program at Pomona.

Professor Hagedorn was an expert in Afro-Cuban music and religion. She was the author of the award-winning book Divine Utterances: The Performance of Afro-Cuban Santeria (Smithsonian, 2001).

A native of Summit, New Jersey, Professor Hagedorn was a summa cum laude graduate of Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. At Tufts she was a triple major in Russian, Spanish, and English and completed a minor in piano performance. Professor Hagedorn earned a master’s degree in international relations from Johns Hopkins University and then served as a White House Fellow and worked for the U.S. State Department. She then shifted directions and earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from Brown University.

Dr. Hagedorn traveled to Cuba several times and became an expert in the playing of bata drums. In 2000, she was named California Teacher of the Year.

Filed Under: In Memoriam


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