Four Women Named to Endowed Professorships at Prestigious Colleges and Universities

Susannah Ottaway was named the  Laird Bell Professor of History at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota. She joined the Carleton faculty in 1998, where she teaches courses in early modern European history, modern British history, and Irish history. She is the author of The Decline of Life: Old Age in Eighteenth-Century England (Cambridge University Press, 2004).

Professor Ottaway is a graduate of Carleton College, where she majored in history. She earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in history from Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

Robin R. Means Coleman was named the inaugural Ida B. Wells and Ferdinand Barnett Professor in the department of communication studies in the School of Communication at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. She will also serve as vice president and associate provost for diversity and inclusion and chief diversity officer. She has been serving as vice president and associate provost for diversity and a professor in the department of communication at Texas A&M University. Dr. Coleman is the author of several books including Horror Noire: Blacks in American Horror Films from the 1890s to Present (Routledge, 2011).

Professor Coleman received her bachelor’s degree in communications from what is now Chatham University in Pittsburgh. She holds a master’s degree in communications from the University of Missouri and a Ph.D. in mass communications from Bowling Green State University in Ohio.

Lynn Meskell has been named the Richard D. Green University Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Meskell, a world-renowned archaeologist, holds joint appointments in the department of anthropology, the graduate program in historic preservation, and the department of city and regional planning in the Weitzman School of Design. Dr. Meskell was most recently the Shirley and Leonard Ely Professor of Humanities and Sciences in the department of anthropology at Stanford University, where she taught since 2005.

Professor Meskell is a graduate of the University of Sydney in her native Australia. She holds a Ph.D. in archaeology from the University of Cambridge in England.

Whitney Pirtle was named to a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Chair in the School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts at the University of California, Merced. Dr. Pirtle is a sociologist with interdisciplinary expertise in race and nation, racial identity constructions, racial/ethnic disparities in health, and Black feminist sociology.

Dr. Pirtle is a graduate of Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Michigan. She earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. at Vanderbilt University in Nashville.

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