Jillean McCommons

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  • Ph.D. Candidate
  • History
  • African American and Africana Studies
  • Appalachian Center
Research Interests:

M.S., University of Michigan, 2007

M.A., University of Wisconsin - Madison, 2003

B.A., Michigan State University, 2000


Jillean McCommons is a Ph.D. candidate studying the social history of Black Appalachians in the twentieth century. Her op-ed columns have been published in the Lexington Herald-Leader, the History News Network, and Newsweek. She is recipient of the Lyman T. Johnson Fellowship, the Robert S. Lipman Graduate Fellowship, and the 2018 Eller & Billings Student Research Award. She is a Pre-Doctoral Fellow at the Carter G. Woodson Institute at the University of Virginia from 2020-2022. 

Selected Publications: 

"Unearthing New Histories of Black Appalachia." Black Perspectives. August 12, 2020. (Book review)

"Appalachian Hillsides as Black Ecologies: Housing, Memory, and the Sanctified Hill Disaster of 1972." Black Perspectives. June 16, 2020.

"Black Women Are Using the Vote They Fought So Hard to Win." History Network News. December 24, 2017. (Op-Ed)

"Corporatism's Triumph is Humanity's Defeat; An Antidote Exists," Lexington Herald-Leader. July 14, 2017. (Op-Ed)

"Manuel Querino" in The Encyclopedia of African American Culture and History: The Black Experience in the Americas. 2nd Edition. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, December 2005.



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