Research Professor and Coordinator
the American Democracy Project
Dr. Mary Evins is a research professor with the Center for Historic Preservation and teaches history in the MTSU Department of History and University Honors College. At the Center, Evins coordinates the American Democracy Project (ADP), a national initiative of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities that promotes civic learning across academic disciplines, intentional development of citizenship skills as fundamental charges of higher education, and student engagement as critical to lifelong citizenship. Evins’ work with civic organizations and present-day diversity and social justice forums adds dimensionality to the mission of the Center, articulating historic preservation and engaged citizenship as vital to bringing our heritage and national values meaningfully into the lives of 21st century Americans.
As an example of the civic heritage and activism overlap, the Center will be prominently involved in Tennessee’s celebration of the upcoming 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. Dr. Evins’ current research focuses on the powerful efforts of Tennessee women in the Progressive Era as agents of social change in their communities, including work toward the vote for women.
Dr. Evins received her B.A. in history and anthropology and M.A.T. in history and sociology from Vanderbilt University, and A.M. and Ph.D. from the University of Chicago in anthropology with an emphasis on culture history, regional landscape studies, and material culture. Her dissertation research on urbanization and exchange economies along the Euphrates River developed from multinational field work projects in Kurdish communities in southeastern Turkey.