The GCWS is governed by a dedicated Board of Directors. Board members are selected by each participating insitution’s Women’s Studies Program. The Board of Directors are responsible for course development and selection, community outreach, and the financial and GCWS staff governance. The Board is led by two co-chairs. This position changes annually; a new co-chair is elected by the Board each year and serves a two-year term.

Current GCWS Board of Directors

Caroline BicksMarilynn S Johnson 
is Professor of History at Boston College where she teaches modern US urban and social history. She received her Ph.D. in history at New York University and has taught at Southern Methodist University and the Graduate Consortium in Women’s Studies at MIT. Her research focuses on migration, urban social relations, race, gender and violence. Her books include The Second Gold Rush: Oakland and the East Bay in World War II (1993) and Street Justice: A History of Police Violence in New York City (2004). Most recently, she published The New Bostonians: How Immigrants Have Transformed the Metro Area Since the 1960s (2015). She now directs a public history website called Global Boston, which explores and documents immigration history in greater Boston.


Anthony PetroAnthony Petro is assistant professor of Religion and Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies at Boston University. His first book, After the Wrath of God: AIDS, Sexuality, and American Religion (Oxford, 2015), examined the history of U.S. religious responses to the AIDS crisis and their role in the promotion of a national moral discourse on sex. His current project, “Provoking Religion: Sex, Art, and the Sacred in Modern America,” looks at how a range of queer and feminist artists have engaged religious themes and ritual in their work since the 1970s, exploring how this archive of visual and performance art helps us to rethink key categories in the study of religion and in gender and sexuality studies. He has published essays on a number of topics, including the queer archive of Catholic sexual abuse, critical disability studies, religion and camp politics, and religion, race, and sexuality in North American religions.

Karen V. Hansen
Karen V. Hansen is Professor of Sociology and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Director of the Women’s Studies Research Center at Brandeis University. She combines sociology and history in her research and teaching. Her latest project, Encounter on the Great Plains: Scandinavian Settlers and the Dispossession of Dakota Indians, 1890-1930 has received support from the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Encounter explores life on a remote Indian reservation in the early twentieth century where Scandinavians began homesteading, with the sanction of the U.S. government. Professor Hansen’s scholarship also focuses on contemporary families. She authored Not-So-Nuclear Families: Class, Gender, and Networks of Care, which received the William J. Goode Book Award, Honorable Mention, and was a finalist for the C. Wright Mills Award. Combining theoretical frameworks and rich empirical accounts, she has edited two anthologies with Anita Ilta Garey, At the Heart of Work and Family and Families in the U.S

Durba MitraDurba Mitra
is Assistant Professor of Women, Gender, and Sexuality and Carol K. Pforzheimer Assistant Professor at the Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University. Mitra works at the intersection of feminist and queer studies. Her research and teaching focus on the history of sexuality, the history of science, and women and gender in the colonial and postcolonial world. In her current book project, Mitra examines the central place of sexuality in the development of social thought in India and across the colonial world.


Lerna EkmekciogluLerna Ekmekçioğlu is McMillan-Stewart Associate Professor of History at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where she is also affiliated with the Women and Gender Studies Program. She received her PhD from the New York University’s joint program of History and Middle Eastern/Islamic Studies (2010). In 2006, together with Melissa Bilal, she published the first anthology in any language dedicated to Armenian feminists. The co-edited book is in Turkish and titled A Cry for Justice: Five Armenian Feminist Writers from the Ottoman Empire to the Turkish Republic (1862–1933). Her first monograph, Recovering Armenia: The Limits of Belonging in Post-Genocide Turkey (Stanford U. Press, 2016), focuses on the surviving Armenians who remained in Istanbul after the genocide. Currently she is collaborating with Melissa Bilal for a book and digital humanities project titled Feminism in Armenian: An Interpretive Anthology and Digital Archive which focuses on the life and works of twelve pioneering women intellectuals who were active from 1860s to 1960s.

Linda BlumLinda Blum,
Professor of Sociology at Northeastern University, is a qualitative, ethnographic sociologist interested in persistence, change, and contradictions in contemporary U.S. gender relations. She began her sociological career studying women’s grassroots movements for comparable pay, but more recently has focused on ideologies of motherhood, how we judge fit and unfit, respectable and disreputable, and measure mothers against each other in ways that reinforce class and race inequality. She is the author of Between Feminism and Labor: The Significance of the Comparable Worth Movement (1991, University of California Press); At the Breast: Ideologies of Breastfeeding and Motherhood in the Contemporary United States (1999, Beacon); and Raising Generation Rx: Mothering Kids with Invisible Disabilities in an Age of Inequality (2015, NYU Press), which received the 2016 Outstanding Publication Award from the Disability and Society Section of the American Sociological Association.

Jo Trigilio
Jo Trigilio is the director of the Graduate Program in Gender and Cultural Studies at Simmons College. Trigilio specializes in oppression/liberation theories, including feminist, gender, sexuality, race, and queer theories, with a special interest in the intersection of theory and practice. Trigilio is politically active in the queer community of Boston and has served on the board of directors for the National Women's and Gender Studies Association for six years. Trigilio is currently leading the Boston Dyke March History and Archive Project.

Freeden Oeur
Freeden Blume Oeur is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Tufts University, and a Faculty Affiliate with the program in Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. His current research examines the relationship between neoliberalism and masculine power, with implications especially for Black politics. He has two forthcoming books: Black Boys Apart: Racial Uplift and Respectability in All-Male Public Schools; and a co-edited volume, Unmasking Masculinities: Men and Society (with Edward Morris).


Nada Ali
Nada Mustafa Ali is Visiting Associate Professor in in the Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Department and is a faculty fellow in the Center for Governance and Sustainability at UMass Boston. Dr. Ali’s teaching covers the areas of gender and intersectionality, critical development studies, and Human Rights. Dr. Ali’s publications include Gender, Race and Sudan's Exile Politics: Do We All Belong to this Country? (Lexington Books, 2015). Her current research focuses on Gender, Militarization, and peace-building in Sudan and South Sudan; HIV/AIDS in the Middle East and Africa; and Women and Social Media.In addition to her academic career, Dr. Ali is an activist and policy specialist who has worked at or consulted for several UN agencies, research institutes, and international, regional and national civil society organizations. She is a Fellow of the Rift Valley Institute and a Board Member of the African Feminist Initiative..




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Consortium for Graduate Studies in Gender, Culture, Women, and Sexuality
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 14N-211
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139
Phone: 617-324-2085