Zinn Education Project Staff

Project Staff

The Zinn Education Project is a collaboration between Rethinking Schools and Teaching for Change staff.

Bill Bigelow, Zinn Education Project Co-director for Rethinking Schools
Bill Bigelow is curriculum editor of Rethinking Schools magazine and author or co-editor of several Rethinking Schools books: A People’s History for the Classroom, The Line Between Us: Teaching About the Border and Mexican Immigration, Rethinking Columbus, Rethinking Globalization: Teaching for Justice in an Unjust World, and Rethinking Our Classrooms — Volumes 1 and 2. Bigelow has taught high school social studies since 1978.

Deborah Menkart, Zinn Education Project Co-director for Teaching for Change
Deborah Menkart is executive director of Teaching for Change. She is co-editor of Beyond Heroes and Holidays: A Practical Guide to K-12 Multicultural, Anti-Racist Education and Staff Development and Putting the Movement Back into Civil Rights Teaching A Resource Guide for Classrooms and Communities.

Katie Orr, Zinn Education Project Communications Manager
Katie Orr is a public historian and history communicator who grew up in the Harpers Ferry area west of Washington, D.C. She earned a B.A. in journalism from Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia, and then a Masters in U.S. History from The American University in D.C. Before joining the Zinn Education Project, Katie was a National Park Service historian working to promote inclusive K-12 education at national parks and expanding the scope of narratives told by the National Park Service to emphasize underrepresented and marginalized perspectives. She is interested in national conversations about identity and geography, education policy, and the healing power of relevancy in history.

Adam Sanchez, Zinn Education Project Organizer and Curriculum Writer, 2017-2018
Adam Sanchez is a social studies teacher and community organizer who is deeply committed to social justice inside and outside the classroom. In addition to his work for the Zinn Education Project, Adam teaches at Harvest Collegiate High School in New York City and serves on the editorial board of Rethinking Schools. He is also a contributor to the books Education and Capitalism: Struggles for Learning and Liberation and 101 Changemakers: Rebels and Radicals Who Changed U.S. History.

Ursula Wolfe-Rocca, Zinn Education Project Organizer and Curriculum Writer, 2018-2019

Ursula Wolfe-Rocca is a public high school social studies teacher outside of Portland, Oregon. The era of U.S. history she finds most inspiring, humbling, and relevant is always the one she is currently unlearning, relearning, and building curriculum around. Ursula is on the editorial board of Rethinking Schools magazine and has taught since 2000. Her article, “COINTELPRO: Teaching the FBI’s War on the Black Freedom Movement” is included in Teaching for Black Lives. She is the Zinn Education Project Organizer/Curriculum Writer for the 2018-2019 school year.

Victoria Smalls, Zinn Education Project Reconstruction Campaign Organizer

For more than 15 years, as a public educator within schools and museums, Victoria has gained an appreciation and passion for learning and sharing all that she can about Reconstruction Era history and Gullah Geechee culture. She serves as a state commissioner with the South Carolina African American Heritage Commission. With her assistance and direction at the Penn Center on St. Helena Island, SC, two buildings on the 50-acre historic district, Darrah Hall and Brick Baptist Church, were designated Reconstruction Era National Monuments. Victoria is also an accomplished visual artist, who has created and sold her work professionally for 16 years.

Mykella Palmer, Zinn Education Project Creative Coordinator

Mykella Palmer is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park where she was a Banneker/Key Scholar and a member of the highly select, nationally acclaimed Hinman CEOs living-learning program. She has over 15 years of web and graphic design experience and manages the design of all things visual for Teaching for Change and the Zinn Education Project.

 

Project Fellows

L. Nqobile Mthethwa, 2017-2019 Zinn Education Project Research Fellow
As an undergrad, Nqobile Mthethwa worked as a research/project assistant for three years writing, organizing, and archiving data pertaining to the Carter G. Woodson Institute’s digital exhibition “The Movement in the Archive,” created and supervised by Professor Deborah McDowell. She has worked on open source web-publishing platforms for the display of library, museum, archives, and academic collections and exhibitions. She presented on Julian Bond’s legacy as a historian on a panel at the Julian Bond Symposium in October 2016. She also helped create and teach a course titled “Introduction to Citizenship & Activism A Critical Examination of Jefferson’s University” for four semesters with Professor Walter Heinecke. Her research interests include organizational structure of grassroots movements, federal legislation of the Civil Rights era, and documenting untold historical narratives. She graduated from the University of Virginia in May 2017 with a B.A. in Political Science.

Abby Saul, 2018-2018 Zinn Education Project Digital Media Fellow
Abby Saul is a rising senior at Swarthmore College majoring in Peace and Conflict Studies and Spanish Literature. Her interests include social movements, Jewish history, Israel/Palestine, and testimonial literature. Her Peace and Conflict Studies senior thesis investigates contemporary Jewish-American identity and the role of Jewish-American anti-Occupation activists in the broader solidarity movement for Palestinian liberation. She is a core member of Swarthmore Students for Justice in Palestine and was formerly a core member of Swarthmore Mountain Justice, which spearheaded the college’s fossil fuel divestment campaign. She is also an organizer with IfNotNow where she coordinates projects to sustain the digital infrastructure and clear communication of the mass, decentralized movement. She has previously worked with the Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo in Buenos Aires, and is deeply interested in how we can build a more just through world through our telling of history.

Alison Kysia, 2013-2014 Zinn Education Project Fellow
Alison Kysia has taught history at Northern Virginia Community College for six years. She has been an educator for more than 15 years.

Katy Swalwell, 2013-2014 Zinn Education Project Fellow
Katy Swalwell is an assistant professor of education at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is the author of Educating Activist Allies: Social Justice Pedagogy with the Suburban and Urban Elite (Routledge, 2013).

 

Editorial

News articles, posts, and social media are written and edited by the Zinn Education Project staff excerpt where indicated otherwise. Bill Bigelow is the series editor of If We Knew Our History. Read bios of the contributors on the Author Bio page.