Robin W. Kilson (1953-2009)
Professor of history Robin W. Kilson graduated from Harvard University (AB 1983, AM 1984, PhD 1990) and taught at a number of institutions including Bryn Mawr College (1989-1991), Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1991-1995), Mount Holyoke College (1992), the University of Texas at Austin (1995-2001), and Northeastern University (2001-ca. 2005). Kilson's academic areas of interest included African American history, gender history, European imperialism and colonialism, and British history. A fellow at the Bunting Institute at Radcliffe College in 1993, Kilson's research examined the experience of Black women doctorates at predominantly white institutions of higher learning from 1921 to the 1990s. Kilson, along with professor Evelynn M. Hammond, co-sponsored a conference entitled "Black Women in the Academy: Defending Our Name, 1894-1994," held at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1994. The conference, the first of its kind, provided a forum for Black women professors of all ranks and disciplines to discuss scholarship and challenges they faced in their personal and professional lives. It included presentations from prominent scholars and activists such as Angela Davis, Florence Ladd, Lani Guinier, and Vinie Burrows.