September 4, 2015

Dear ASWAD Members and Friends,

We have recently concluded our biennial elections, and I am pleased to be welcoming our new slate of officers and Executive Board members to the next administration of ASWAD:

President Leslie Alexander, The Ohio State University
Vice President Elisa Joy White, University of California, Davis
Secretary Laura Rosanne Adderley, Tulane University
Treasurer Walter Rucker, Treasurer

Incoming Executive Board Members:

Herman Bennett, Graduate Center, City University of New York (CUNY)
Mark Christian, Lehman College, City University of New York
Flavio Gomes, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro
Sonya Maria Johnson, Michigan State University
Laurie Lambert, University of California, Davis
Evelyne Laurent-Perrault, New York University
Peggy Piesche, University of Bayreuth
Walter Rucker, Rutgers University
Ben Talton, Temple University

As we welcome our incoming Executive Board members, I would like to extend our sincere thanks to our departing members Hilary Beckles , Chouki El-Hamel, Fatimah Jackson, Monica Lima, Wania Sant'Anna and Elisee Soummoni.  They have each been valuable members of our administrative team and have helped us in significant ways to strengthen ASWAD as a global resource for scholars of the African diaspora.  

Over the past few years, ASWAD has truly been something of a "family affair." We have had the unexpected but happy pleasure of officers taking leave to welcome new babies into their lives.  As a result, we've had several changes of officers recently.  Many thanks to Yuko Miki, former Secretary; Tanya Huelett, former Treasurer; Bayo Holsey, Acting Secretary; Laurie Lambert, Acting Secretary; and Walter Rucker, Acting Treasurer, for your contributions and for making such a seamless transition.

Since our last meeting, we have added additional members to our administrative team who are each playing critical roles in ASWAD's development.  Executive Board member and former ASWAD Secretary Erik McDuffie has moved into a specially created role to be a liaison with potential conference host sites, as well as with former hosts.  Diana Lachatanere, former senior archivist at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, has joined us to help design and implement an online institutional archive that will be housed on a new interactive website currently under development by our webmaster Marc Ronquillo.  Our Membership and Conference Registration management continues under the excellent direction of Ebony Jones, a doctoral candidate at NYU. 

This November, I will be concluding my term of office as ASWAD President.  It has been my distinct honor and pleasure to have served this organization over the past four years in this capacity, and I look forward to sharing with you in our ongoing explorations of the African diaspora experience in Charleston and for many conferences to come.  

We have a strong team in place for continuing to develop ASWAD as a supportive network for African diaspora scholarship globally.  Please join with me in welcoming all our new Executive Board members and the entire administrative team.


Kim D. Butler, President


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