Obermann Advisory Board

Ann Ricketts

Assistant Vice President for Research
University of Iowa

Ann Ricketts is assistant Vice President in the Office of the Vice President for Research. She enjoys working with faculty and staff to identify internal and external sources of support for their research, scholarship and creative activities. She co-chaired the University of Iowa Task Force on Public Outreach and Civic Engagement in 2009 and currently co-chairs, with Teresa Mangum, the Provost’s Advisory Committee on Publicly Engaged Arts, Research and Scholarship.  Ricketts serves on the APLU Council on Engagement & Outreach Executive Committee, the CIC Committee on Engagement, the MidWestOne Bank Advisory Board, and is an ex-officio member of the Office of the State Archaeologist Advisory Board, and the Digital Studio for the Public Humanities Advisory Board.

Dorothy Johnson

Art & Art History
University of Iowa

Dorothy Johnson is Roy J. Carver Professor of Art History. Her area of specialization is 18th and 19th century French and European art. She is the author of David to Delacroix: the Rise of Romantic Mythology (UNC Press, 2011). Her articles and essays have appeared in The Art BulletinArt HistoryGazette des Beaux-ArtsEighteenth-Century StudiesMaster DrawingsThe Cambridge Companion to DelacroixStudies in Voltaire and the Eighteenth Century, among others. In 2005, she received the Regents' Award for Faculty Excellence from the University of Iowa. From 1995–2009, she served as the Director of the School of Art & Art History. During this time, she worked to realize a new building for the School, the award-winning Art Building West, designed by the internationally acclaimed architect Steven Holl.

Kristy Nabhan-Warren

Religious Studies
University of Iowa

Kristy Nabhan-Warren is Associate Professor and Figge Chair of Catholic Studies at the University of Iowa. She is the author of The Virgin of El Barrio: Marian Apparitions, Catholic Evangelizing, and Mexican American Activism (NYU Press, 2005), Cursillos in America: Catholics, Protestants and Fourth Day Spirituality (UNC Press, 2013), and several journal articles, essays, and book chapters. Kristy is currently working on two manuscripts; the first, Latin@ Religions and the Reconquista of América, is a synthesis and critical examination of U.S. Latin@ religions from 1848 to the present. In the second, Cornbelt Catholicism: Latinos and the American Heartland, Kristy focuses on  how both historically situated as well as ethnographically informed, community-based research can uncover hidden histories and stories. She also thinks that a focus on the Midwest can provide fresh insights into American religious and ethnic histories. Cornbelt Catholicism is funded in part by The American Parish Project (TAPP) and The Louisville Institute. Kristy is active in the American Academy of Religion (AAR), where she is on several steering committees, including Religion and Social Sciences, Sports and Religion, and Spiritus: A Journal of Christian Spirituality. At the University of...

Michael Hill

University of Iowa

Michael Hill's research focuses on post-Harlem Renaissance African American literature. As a 2014 Fall Obermann Fellow-in-Residence, Prof. Hill worked on his book project, Kinky Bourgeois: Sexual Initiation and Democratic Potential in Black Civil Rights Novels. Specifically, he worked on two chapters of a book—A Little Child Shall Lead Them: Adolescence in African American Novels, 1941–2008—that studies adolescent characters in African American novels. Focusing on the period from World War II to the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., these chapters consider how black writers use sex to probe competing outlooks on race and democracy.

Rebekah Kowal

University of Iowa

Dr. Rebekah Kowal teaches dance history and theory at The University of Iowa. Her research investigates how moving bodies are compelling agents of social, cultural, and political change. A dancer and scholar, Kowal seeks to forge interdisciplinary connections between dance theory and practice. After completing a B.A. in English at Barnard College/Columbia University, she danced in New York City with Heidi Henderson, Molly Rabinowitz, Bryan Hayes, and Pat Cremmins. She holds a C.M.A. from the Laban/Bartenieff Institute and a Ph.D. in American Studies from NYU. Prior to joining the faculty at Iowa, she was a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Performance Studies at Haverford College. Between 2002-2009, she served as Book Reviews Editor for Dance Research Journal and on the Congress on Research in Dance Editorial Board. Her articles and book reviews are published in TDRPerformance ResearchDance Selected Research, Vol. 6,The Returns of Alwin NikolaisDance Research JournalDance Research, and the Oxford Handbook of Dance and Ethnicity

Her book, How...

Sherry Kay Watt

Educational Policy & Leadership Studies
University of Iowa

Watt is an associate professor in the Higher Education and Student Affairs program. Sherry recently published her latest edited book, Designing Transformative Multicultural Initiatives: Theoretical Foundations, Practical Applications and Facilitator Considerations. Her area of research explores various reactions people have to difficult dialogues related to social issues. She applies her research by teaching learners how to develop the skills to engage across differences. Sherry has written opinion pieces for On Being, ACPA College Student Educators International, and the Chronicle of Higher Education Review. These writings examine experiences with race and racism through a personal lens. Sherry has almost 20 years of experience in designing and leading educational experiences that involve strategies to engage participants in dialogue that is meaningful, passionate, and self-awakening.

Tyler Priest

Tyler Priest
University of Iowa

Tyler Priest came to the University of Iowa in 2012 after eight years as Director of Global Studies at the C.T. Bauer College of Business, University of Houston. His primary interests are in the fields of energy, environmental, global, business, and public history. He has a joint appointment in the Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences, where he teaches a course on U.S. energy policy and assists in overseeing the Environmental Policy and Planning program. His most recent book, The Offshore Imperative: Shell Oil’s Search for Petroleum in the Postwar United States (Texas A&M, 2007), analyzes Shell Oil Company’s drive to find and develop petroleum reserves in ever-deeper ocean waters. In 2008, The Offshore Imperative won the Geosciences in the Media Award from the American Association of Petroleum Geologists. Also in 2008, Priest won the Alice Hamilton Award from the American Society for Environmental History for his article, “Extraction Not Creation: The History of Offshore...