Edmund T. Gordon does scholarly and activist work in the areas of power and social transformation in the Black Diaspora. He is founding ex-chair of the Department of African and African Diaspora Studies (2010-2017), an associate professor of African and African Diaspora Studies, and currently serves as Executive Director of Commemoration and Contextualization at the University of Texas, Austin. His teaching and research interests include: power and identity in the African Diaspora, critical race and gender theory, and the racial economy of space and resources. Dr. Gordon’s publications have appeared nationally and internationally, and his book Disparate Diasporas: Identity and Politics in an African-Nicaraguan Community (UT Press, 1998), a historical ethnography of Black Nicaraguans’ politics and identity, has been translated into Spanish. In an effort to bring his scholarship into public engagement, Dr. Gordon has conducted collaborative research projects with Black communities in Central America. He also served as a member of the Austin Independent School District’s Board of Trustees (2015-2018). He continues his service work locally through the creation of a Racial Geography Tour of UT Austin’s campus and other public history projects in central Texas.
Celeste Henery is a cultural anthropologist working at the intersections of race, gender, and health; specifically, what it means to feel and live well in troubled times. Dr. Henery’s broader research interests include black ecologies and feminisms, and black diaspora studies. She received her PhD in Anthropology from the University of Texas at Austin, where she currently works as a Research Associate in the Department of African and African Diaspora Studies. Her writing on black life across the diaspora has been published in academic journals and blogs. In addition to her academic endeavors, Dr. Henery conducts interviews for Texas After Violence Project, has worked as a mitigation specialist, and guides others to creatively write and navigate their lives. She has collaborated on Dr. Gordon’s Racial Geography Tour website as well as the research, creation, and production of the projects and films on ctxretold.org
Kayla Abuda Galang is a filmmaker based in Austin, Texas, telling character-driven stories from a lens of intersectionality, introspection, and immersion. She received her B.S. in Radio-Television-Film and B.J. in Magazine Journalism in 2014 at the University of Texas, where she currently works as a Post-Production Specialist at Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services (LAITS). Outside of LAITS, her directorial and editing work has premiered and won the Audience Award at SXSW, and has been an official selection at festivals such as Palm Springs International ShortFest, Indie Memphis Film Festival, and Encounters Film Festival. Kayla worked with Dr. Gordon and Dr. Henery to produce Naming a President and a Building: Painter Hall, bringing her creative guidance and documentary filmmaking background to the history of Painter Hall’s naming.
Amy Shreeve is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin studying Rhetoric & Writing and History. Additionally, she is receiving certificates in Museum Studies and Digital Humanities. Amy’s interests center around Yiddishkeit in America, technical writing, and commemorative geography. She currently works with Dr. Edmund Gordon on the Campus Contextualization and Commemoration project. In this project, she is mapping old census records onto historic Austin in order to see demographic trends in the city. Amy is also interested in the geography of New York and has created a commemorative Twitter bot called “This Used to Be a Synagogue.” Amy owns every National Geographic published between 2000-2013 and many non-consecutive issues since.
Isaac Womack graduated with a BA in History and African and African Diaspora Studies from the University of Texas at Austin in 2021. In 2018, he began working on the Wheatville project and constructed a series of historical maps utilizing geographic information system technologies. As a passionate memory keeper who strives to explore ways to preserve the social memory of historically marginalized communities, Isaac is currently pursuing a master’s in Library and Information Science at the Pratt Institute in New York.