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AASLH Emerging History Professionals Welcome New Committee Member: Lauren O’Brien

The AASLH Emerging History Professionals Affinity Community is please to announce a new committee member.

Lauren O’Brien is a museum educator and PhD student in American Studies at Rutgers University-Newark. With a BA in Black Studies from UC Santa Barbara and a MA in History from Loyola University Chicago,Version 2 she understands the power, politics and privilege within the collection, preservation, and dissemination of history. Therefore, her goal is to interrogate silences within exclusionary narratives and create platforms that highlight, document, and share the histories of marginalized communities.

As a woman of color, Lauren uses history as a vehicle for social activism, multicultural coalitions and peace building. She has served as an educator in several museums and cultural institutions including the UCSB Multicultural Center, the Art Institute of Chicago, Casa Dolores: Center for the Study of the Popular Arts of Mexico, and the Jane Addams Hull-House Museum. She most recently served as Hull-House’s Cities of Peace Program Assistant. Cities of Peace is an inter-generational initiative which connects the struggles of young people in Chicago and Phnom Penh, Cambodia as they organize to transform harm caused by state and interpersonal violence and create community healing. Utilizing this program as an intersection of her academic work and social activism, Lauren developed trauma-informed high school curriculum and facilitated a five month teach-in series for Chicago educators and youth workers. The goal of this trauma-informed, inquiry-to-action toolkit is meant to encourage all to think critically about harm and genocide and cultivate environments for resistance, transformation and healing in homes, schools and communities.

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The AASLH Emerging History Professionals (EHP) Affinity Community supports, connects, and unites the newest generation of state and local history practitioners. This community provides support and professional development opportunities for emerging history professionals while creating and maintaining physical and digital spaces where EHPs can meet, discuss ideas, and network.

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