Dr. Alexandria Russell is a historian, public history practitioner, and digital humanities scholar who is passionate about making African American history accessible to people of all backgrounds. Her research, published scholarship, digital projects, and inventive public programming expands our knowledge of African American History, United States History, Women & Gender Studies, and Public History.
In 2018, she earned a Ph.D. in History from the Department of History at the University of South Carolina. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education from the College of Charleston in 2009. Her forthcoming book project, Sites Seen and Unseen: Mapping African American Women’s Public History (University of Illinois Press), is a national study that examines the evolution of African American women’s public commemorations in the United States from the late nineteenth century to the present. She has received several grants and fellowships to support her research, including the W.E.B. Du Bois Center Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and an American Democracy fellowship from the Charles Warren Center at Harvard University.
She recently served as the Harvard & The Legacy of Slavery Research Fellow for digital humanities at Harvard Radcliffe Institute and has previously contributed to other university slavery initiatives, including the Scarlet & Black Project at Rutgers University. She also works with local and national African American history initiatives to create accessible online content for audiences of all ages. Her work in the digital humanities has yielded several flourishing projects, including the Webby nominated "Harvard & the Legacy of Slavery Tour Experience," “A Legacy of Leadership: Early African American Alumni of Harvard & Radcliffe,” and "The Garden Initiative for Black Women's Religious Activism."
Her professional experience also extends to her work on Capitol Hill for Congressman James E. Clyburn (SC-06) and as a middle school educator in Berkeley County, South Carolina. Her experience as a public school teacher has informed her work as a public history consultant when she develops curriculum guides for children, participates in community advisory boards, and coordinates public programming. As the Founder and Executive Director of Black Women Legacies, she is committed to raising awareness about past and present memorials that have been created to celebrate the legacies of Black women.
She is currently the Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion Curator at Boston Symphony Orchestra and W.E.B. Du Bois Research Center Hutchins Family Fellow at Harvard University’s Hutchins Center for African & African American Research.
For a full list of Alexandria Russell’s scholarship, presentations, digital projects, and professional experience, click “Curriculum Vitae” below.