Jessica DeSpain is an Associate Professor of English at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and is the co-director of SIUE’s IRIS Center for the Digital Humanities. She is the author of Nineteenth-Century Transatlantic Reprinting and the Embodied Book (Ashgate, 2014), and the lead editor of The Wide, Wide World Digital Edition, an exploration of the reprints of Susan Warner’s bestselling nineteenth-century novel. She has published several articles on the intersections of book history and digital humanities pedagogy. DeSpain collaborated with faculty in English, History, Education, and STEM on the NSF-funded Digital East St. Louis Project, in which middle school students in East St. Louis built a digital project about the history and culture of their city. She is currently the director of the NEH-funded Conversation Toward a Brighter Future project wherein middle and high school students participate in digital storytelling studios about the value of intergenerational relationships.
Jen Cline is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Lewis and Clark Community College. She designed and now coordinates their Honors College, which is an interdisciplinary program primarily incorporating the humanities and social sciences. She has experience developing honors interdisciplinary courses related to social problems including racial and ethnic relations. She has continued her academic training by taking courses focused on innovative teaching methods and service learning. She is also Vice President of the Alton Main Street Executive Board. Cline has been particularly effective for imagining what shape the Pathway project will take at L&C.
Connie Frey Spurlock is an Associate Professor of Sociology and the Faculty Director of SIUE’s Successful Communities Collaborative, a cross-disciplinary program that supports one-year partnerships between the University and communities as a part of the national EPIC Network, an award-winning program for fostering university/community partnerships.
Michael Hankins is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Deparment of Chemistry. His research interests include nonlinear dynamics in far-from-equilibrium electrochemical systems, role of cyclic/oscillatory biological reactions in autoimmune disorders, and synchronization characteristics of battery systems.
Jessica Harris is an associate professor of historical studies in the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences and Interim Associate Provost. Harris’ work at SIUE has included a special assignment as a Provost Fellow for Diversity and Inclusion. In this role, she collaborated with faculty colleagues, undergraduate and graduate students, the Honors Program, the Office of Academic Affairs and the Office of Student Affairs to launch a pilot of Sustained Dialogue, a powerful five-stage social action model encouraging dialogue across differences, as a curricular and co-curricular program.
Kristine Hildebrandt is an associate professor in the Department of English Language and Literature. Her research profile includes language documentation and preservation. She is the principal investigator on two projects funded by the National Science Foundation’s Documenting Endangered Languages program, and previously directed a documentation project, funded by the Hans Rausing Endangered Languages Project at the School of Oriental and African Studies to document endangered/vulnerable languages of northern-central Nepal: Nar and Phu. Check out her collaborative work with SIUE faculty and students at: https://mananglanguages.isg.siue.edu/.
Katherine Knowles is the IRIS Center Project Manager. She has has a BA in English and Music from Hanover College and an MA in Shakespeare Studies from the University of Birmingham’s Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-upon-Avon. She currently manages the Conversation Toward a Brighter Future 2.0 project as well as the planning phase for the Digital Community Engagement Pathway.
Jill O’Shea Lane is the Dean of Transfer Programs at Lewis and Clark Community College in Godfrey, Illinois. Prior to her appointment to this position, Jill was an Assistant Professor of Speech at Lewis & Clark. Jill has extensive experience in higher education and government. Jill served as the Director of Governmental Relations at the Illinois Community College Board where she lobbied the Illinois Legislature on behalf of the community college system in Illinois. She also spent several years at the University of Illinois – Springfield as Projects Manager of the IllinoisLegislativeStudiesCenter. Jill has served as staff to the Illinois Legislature as an Analyst at the Illinois Citizens Assembly and as staff in the Illinois Governor’s Office as a Budget Analyst for the Bureau of the Budget.
Howard Rambsy is a professor of literature at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, where he has taught a wide range of American and African American literature courses, and coordinated more than 300 public humanities projects concentrating on African American literature and cultural history.