This opportunity for concrete activism just in from Ian Lekus, chair of the Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender History (CLBGTH), an affiliated society of the American Historical Association (which is still the cheapest membership of all time: $US 5 for students, retirees, and the unemployed, to $US 150 for lifetime members. So join!)
This note is to update you all on the “Harvesting the Grapevine” project, sponsored by the Sexual Diversity and Gender Identity (SDGI) Committee (which I have chaired since November 2005) of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) and funded by the Arcus and Gill Foundations, among others. In 2006, the SDGI Committee wanted to provide historical and sociological analysis of those campuses which had secured LGBTQ-inclusive non-discrimination clauses and/or partner benefits. The idea was to build recommendations based upon those cases for the many more campuses that had not secured either kind of freedoms. Accordingly, after winning a substantial grant, we hired Dr. Lori Messinger of the University of Kansas to do this research, and her (and her team’s) findings will be published in the September issue of Academe. We’re on stage two of our project then, drafting a second round of grants to make the dissemination and implementation of Dr. Messinger’s recommendations a reality.
Accordingly, the Committee is looking for new members who have the time and perspective to help make this project successful. Members would not have to be historians, but we are looking for folks who have had experience with either giving or taking webinars and other cost-effective vehicles for disseminating information. Also, our Committee has become very East Coast: we need Californians or Westerners in general to provide necessary geographical balance.
So, if you know of any such colleagues who may be interested in this type of informed academic activism, then please refer them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
Charles H. Ford, Professor and Chair, History
Norfolk State University, Norfolk, Virginia