January 27, 2014

Welcome Cara!

By Brandi Denison

Please join me in welcoming Cara Burnidge as a co-editor of the blog! I met Cara when we were both selected to present papers for one of the earliest Religion in the American West Seminars at the American Academy of Religion. She wrote beautifully about the transition of Kansas from the Wild West to the tame Midwest, and about Carrie Nation’s role in establishing the idea of Kansas.

Since then, she’s graduated with a PhD in religious studies from Florida State University, and is an active contributor to both this blog and the Religion in American History blog. She is a clear thinker, energetic, and engaged in digital humanities projects. I’m confident that the blog with flourish with her editorship.

Cara will be taking my place as co-editor as I move on towards other projects. She has fantastic ideas for the blog and I can’t wait to see what she and Stan cook up.

January 6, 2014

We did it!

We have wonderful news to share! The AAR’s Program Committee met in December, and they decided to grant us official group status. This means that, for the foreseeable future, we will have a presence at every national AAR meeting as the Religion in the American West Group. We are thrilled that all of the important work we have been accomplishing these past few years concerning this growing area of study will now enjoy the stability of a first-rate institutional home.

A huge “thank you” to all of you who supported this effort with letters, kind words, blogposts, tweets, and your participation in the Seminar. And a special thanks to Quincy Newell and Jim Bennett, the co-chairs of the Religion in the American West Seminar. Moving forward, Brandi Denison and I (Brett Hendrickson) will serve as your intrepid co-chairs. We are happy to introduce you to the Group’s steering committee:

· Thomas Bremer, Associate Professor, Rhodes College

· John-Charles Duffy, Visiting Assistant Professor, Miami University

· Kathleen Holscher, Assistant Professor, University of New Mexico

· Patricia O’Connell Killen, Academic Vice President and Professor, Gonzaga University

· Sarah Pike, Professor, California State University at Chico

In the next few weeks, we will be circulating our Call to Papers for the 2014 AAR meeting in San Diego, so stay tuned!