Aileen Friesen is a historian of Russia, with research interests in the history of empire, religion, mobility, and culture. Her recent book manuscript examines how Russian Orthodoxy acted as a basic building block for constructing Russian settler communities in current-day southern Siberia and northern Kazakhstan. This project is based on research collected from archives and libraries in Omsk, St. Petersburg, and Moscow. As a Plett Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Winnipeg, Friesen has started a new project on mobility and colonization during the long nineteenth century, using the settlement of Mennonites into and throughout the Russian empire as her case study. She has publications in the Journal of Mennonite Studies and Canadian Slavonic Papers, as well as a contribution in the edited collection, Orthodox Christianity in Imperial Russia: A Sourcebook on Lived Religion.
Ben Goossen is a historian of religion and science at Harvard University. He is the author of Chosen Nation: Mennonites and Germany in a Global Era, published in 2017 by Princeton University Press. Goossen’s work explores new methods of narrating the processes of nationalization and global diaspora, engaging questions of warfare and pacifism, theology and political activism, gender, genocide, anti-Semitism, and racial science. He has held fellowships from the Fulbright Commission and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), and he is a Beinecke Scholar. Goossen attends the Mennonite Congregation of Boston and writes widely on Anabaptist faith, life, and history.
Simone Horst is special collections librarian at Eastern Mennonite University. She grew up in Elkhart, IN and came to EMU as an undergraduate. She earned a B.A. in History and Social Sciences from EMU in 2012 then went on to earn her MLIS from the University of South Carolina in 2014. Her interest in EMU’s special collections began during her freshman year of college when she applied for a job as a work-study student in the EMU Archives. She worked as a student in both the EMU Archives and in Menno Simons Historical Library for six years prior to beginning her current role in July of 2014. Horst lives in Park View with her husband, Michael, and they attend Community Mennonite Church of Harrisonburg.
Jason Kauffman is a historian of Latin America with a research focus on frontiers and borderlands, economic development, and environmental history. A graduate of Goshen College, he holds an MA from the University of New Mexico and a PhD from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill. He currently serves as director of archives and records management for Mennonite Church USA where he is reviving a fascination with Mennonite history. Emerging research interests include Mennonite economic development efforts in Latin America and, more broadly, the many ways that Mennonites have reconciled business activity and the accumulation of wealth with their faith. His main goal as a historian is to make history relevant to a broad audience by actively working to bridge gaps that divide “academic history” and “public history.” When not doing history things he likes to sing and hang out with his awesome family.
Mark L. Louden
Mark L. Louden is a professor of German at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, where he also directs the Max Kade Institute for German-American Studies and is an affiliate faculty member in the Religious Studies Program, the Mosse/Weinstein Center for Jewish Studies, and the Department of Linguistics. He received his A.B., M.A., and Ph.D. in Germanic linguistics at Cornell University. A fluent speaker of Pennsylvania Dutch, most of his published research and public outreach center on the language and its speakers, past and present. His book, Pennsylvania Dutch: The Story of an American Language, appeared in 2016 in the Young Center Books in Anabaptist and Pietist Studies series published by the Johns Hopkins University Press. Aside from his teaching and research, he serves as an interpreter and cultural mediator for Amish and Old Order Mennonite groups in the legal and health care systems. Married with one daughter, he is a member of Milwaukee Mennonite Church.
Devin Manzullo-Thomas is director of the Sider Institute for Anabaptist, Pietist and Wesleyan Studies at Messiah College, and a PhD student in American history at Temple University. His research falls into two categories. As a denominational historian of the Brethren in Christ Church, he applies his training in cultural and religious history to understand how this small religious community has changed over time. As a public historian of American religion, he studies the ways in which religious communities construct, commemorate, and contest the past in public through historical societies, heritage sites, museums, monuments, archives, and other institutions of public memory. His articles and reviews have appeared in Brethren in Christ History and Life, Mennonite Quarterly Review, The Conrad Grebel Review, Church History, and other publications. He, his wife Katie, and their son Lucas attend the Grantham Brethren in Christ Church.
Ted Maust is currently pursuing an M.A. in Public History at Temple University. He graduated from Goshen College (Ind.) with majors in History and English, writing his thesis on John F. Funk and the ‘Herald of Truth’. Ted’s academic interests include oral history, Anabaptist/Mennonite history, East African studies, cultural criticism, and thinking about ways for cultural institutions to share stories outside their walls and their “lifeblood” constituencies.
Christina Entz Moss
Christina Entz Moss is a doctoral candidate in history at the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, with previous degrees from the University of Waterloo and Saint Thomas University in Fredericton, New Brunswick. Her research interests include the influence of apocalyptic and visionary/prophetic movements on religious communities and the intersection of gender, class, and religion in Reformation-era Europe. She is currently working on her doctoral dissertation entitled ‘”Your sons and daughters shall prophesy:” Prophecy, Visions, Apocalypticism and Gender in Strasbourg, 1522-1539’
David Y. Neufeld
David Y. Neufeld is a historian of religion in early modern Europe at the Division for Late Medieval and Reformation Studies, University of Arizona. In his current research, Neufeld explores how public manifestations of religious minorities’ cultures shaped possibilities for conflict and coexistence with broader society, using seventeenth-century Swiss Anabaptism as a case study. He has held grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Society for Reformation Research, and the Leibniz Institute for European History (IEG). Neufeld is the author of Common Witness: A Story of Ministry Partnership between French and North American Mennonites, 1953-2003, published with the Institute of Mennonite Studies and Éditions de La Talwogne in 2016. He attends Shalom Mennonite Fellowship in Tucson.
Joel Horst Nofziger
Joel Horst Nofziger is director of communications for the Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society, where he is also editor of Pennsylvania Mennonite Heritage. A native of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, his research interest lies in understanding how Mennonites in the United States have constructed and perpetuated their identity through the stories they tell themselves. He has a BA in History and Peacebuilding & Development from Eastern Mennonite University. He and his wife Eileen attend Pilgrims Mennonite Church in Akron, Pennsylvania, and Keystone Friends Monthly Meeting (Ohio Yearly Meeting Conservative).
Melody Pannell has served in the field of social work, higher education and ministry for over 25 years. Currently, she is serving as Assistant Professor of Social Work in the Department of Applied Social Sciences and Chairperson for the Diversity and Inclusion Committee at Eastern Mennonite University. In her commitment as a community organizer, social justice advocate and church leader, Melody has recently been appointed as the Chairperson for the Religious Affairs Committee serving the local NAACP Branch. Melody was born and raised in Harlem, New York City at Seventh Avenue Mennonite Church (now Infinity Mennonite), where her calling, passion and dedication for community outreach developed. As a response to the social disparities affecting adolescent girls in her community, she founded The Seventh Avenue Mennonite Church Girls Group in 1990, which has now evolved into the women’s empowerment ministry of Destiny’s Daughters; a Therapeutic Spiritual Mentoring Program dedicated to the personal transformation, holistic development and self -empowerment of young women and girls. It is her vision to address historical harms, dignity violations and structured discriminations that affect the positive development and holistic well-being of adolescent girls. Her current academic scholarship interest, classroom teachings and hands-on work include trauma informed care, post-traumatic slave syndrome, critical race theory, crisis intervention, practical theology, womanist theology, spiritual formation, restorative justice, diversity and inclusion, social justice advocacy, intersectionality and social work core values, ethics and competencies. It is her life mission to embody practical theology through the values and ethics of social work and encourage those that she serves to engage in a transformative journey of “emancipatory hope in action.”
Holly Scott teaches history at Eastern Mennonite University, where she is also the writing tutor for EMU’s graduate and professional degree programs. Her main research interests are in the social movements of the 1960s. Her recent book, Younger Than That Now: the Politics of Age in the 1960s(University of Massachusetts Press, 2016) examines the cultural meanings activists and observers attached to the pairing of youth and political radicalism in the 1960s. Other research interests include Mennonite participation in social justice movements, identity formation among American Mennonites, oral history, the history of youth and childhood, and recent American culture and politics. She earned a PhD in history from American University and also holds degrees from Penn State Harrisburg and Eastern Mennonite University. She lives in Lovingston, Virginia and is a member of Charlottesville Mennonite Church.
Tobin Miller Shearer
Tobin Miller Shearer is an associate professor of history at the University of Montana where he also directs the African-American Studies Program. He is, with Regina Shands Stoltzfus, the co-founder of the Damascus Road Anti-Racism Process. His most recent book Two Weeks Every Summer: Fresh Air Children and the Problem of Race in America was published by Cornell University Press in the spring of 2017.
Janneken Smucker, a 5th-generation Mennonite quiltmaker, is Assistant Professor of History at West Chester University where she specializes in digital and public history, and American material culture. The author of Amish Quilts: Crafting an American Icon (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2013), she lectures and writes widely on the topic of quilts for both popular and academic audiences. As a digital history specialist, Janneken leads workshops on digital tools and strategies, consults on digital projects for non-profits and museums, and brings digital humanities into the undergraduate classroom, recently through the award winning oral history project, Goin’ North: Stories from the First Great Migration to Philadelphia. She is board president of the non-profit, Quilt Alliance, working closely with its oral history project, Q.S.O.S. — Quilters Save Our Stories.
Regina Shands Stoltzfus
Regina Shands Stoltzfus currently teaches at Goshen College in the Peace, Justice Conflict Studies (PJCS) and Bible, Religion and Philosophy (BRP) departments. Her
courses include Race, Class and Ethnic Relations, Personal Violence and Healing, Spiritual Path of the Peacemaker, and Transforming Conflict and Violence. Regina is co-founder of the Roots of Justice Anti-Oppression program (formerly Damascus Road) and continues as a core trainer with Roots of Justice. From 1993-1996, she served as Staff Associate for Urban Peacemaking with Mennonite Central
Committee. She has also served as an associate pastor at Lee Heights Community Church in Cleveland (1995-2002), and as a campus pastor at Goshen College (2002-2005). Regina is currently a doctoral candidate in the Theology, Ethics and Human Sciences program at Chicago Theological Seminary. Regina is the recipient of the state of Indiana’s 2016 Spirit of Justice Award, the highest award conferred by Indiana’s Civil Rights Commission.