A Tribute to Mary McLeod Bethune
Stephanie Y. Evans, PhD is a Professor of Black Women's Studies and serves as Director of the Institute for Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Georgia State University. Her research interest is Black women's intellectual history, memoirs, and mental health. She is author of three books: Black Women's Yoga History: Memoirs of Inner Peace (SUNY, 2021); Black Passports: Travel Memoirs as a Tool for Youth Empowerment (SUNY, 2014), and Black Women in the Ivory Tower, 1850-1954: An Intellectual History (UF, 2007) as well as lead co-editor of three books, Black Women and Social Justice Education (SUNY, 2019), Black Women's Mental Health: Balancing Strength and Vulnerability (SUNY Press, 2017), and African Americans and Community Engagement in Higher Education (SUNY, 2009).
PROFESSOR OF black women's studies
Dr. Stephanie Y. Evans
Dr. Evans has two projects in progress--"Chair at the Table: Black Women Department Chairs on Academic Service, Leadership, and Balance" (a 2021 special issue of Palimpsest journal) as well as Black Women and Public Health: Regenerative History, Practice, and Planning (in production, SUNY). She is curator of several web resources, including the Black Women's Studies Booklist, Africana Memoirs Database, Black Women's Music Database, and the Black Women's Yoga History site. She is also an independent book reviewer and editor of the Black Women's Wellness book series at SUNY Press. She has co-edited two community-based publications, OASIS: Oldways Africana Soup in Stories (with Oldways, a food and nutrition nonprofit) and Purple Sparks: Poems by Sexual Assault Survivors (with youthSpark, an anti sex-trafficking and youth abuse prevention non-profit).
At GSU, Professor Evans is affiliate faculty in the Department of African American Studies, the Center for the Study of Stress, Trauma, and Resilience, as well as in the Center for Studies of Africa and Its Diaspora. Between 2011 and 2019, she served as Chair of the of African American Studies, Africana Women's Studies, and History (AWH) Department at Clark Atlanta University. Dr. Evans was recognized with the CAU 2017 Aldridge-McMillan Award for Excellence in Research. In 2015, she edited Phylon: Review of Race and Culture, reviving the journal founded by W. E. B. Du Bois at Atlanta University. She also has co-edited "Africana Studies at the Graduate Level: A Twenty-first Century Perspective," a special issue of the Western Journal of Black Studies and published in journals including The Department Chair Journal, Peace Studies Journal, Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, Feminist Teacher, Florida Historical Quarterly, and African American Research Perspectives.
Prior to CAU, Dr. Evans served as Director of African American Studies of Women's Studies at the University of Florida. She was awarded the UF Colonel Allan R. and Margaret G. Crow Term Professor for the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, 2010-11. Evans has conducted research at University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, Howard University’s Moorland-Spingarn Research Center in Washington D.C. and through the University of Florida’s Paris Research Center in Paris, France.
In May 2003, Stephanie Evans received her PhD from the W. E. B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies with a concentration in History and Politics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst; in May 2002 earned a Master’s Degree in the same field. Also in 2002, she completed the Graduate Certificate Program in Advanced Feminist Studies. Her main graduate student interest was Black women’s intellectual and educational history. In her dissertation, "Living Legacies: Black Women, Educational Philosophies, and Community Service, 1865-1965," she considered the educational ideas of four African American women educators: Fanny Jackson Coppin, Anna Julia Cooper, Mary McLeod Bethune, and Septima Clark.
While completing her dissertation, Evans worked as the Assistant Director for Youth Education Programs in the Swearer Center for Public Service at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. In the summer of 1999 she was a research intern at Stanford University’s Haas Center for Public Service and worked on issues of cultural identity and community service. In May 1999 she earned an Interdisciplinary Studies BA in Comparative Humanities--gender and cross-cultural American studies--from California State University, Long Beach. In her undergraduate work, she earned several honors: Phi Beta Kappa, Cum Laude, and Outstanding Department Graduate and was a Kellogg Fellow and a McNair Scholar.
Dr. Stephanie Evans is happily married to Dr. Curtis Byrd. In 2019, they both turned 50 and celebrated their 10-year wedding anniversary. Dr. Evans is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.