Hooks Scholars

Visiting Scholars Program

The Hooks Institute hosts scholars and other professionals from across the United States to work for an uninterrupted period of time to complete manuscripts and other projects. Visiting scholars also bring new and refreshing perspectives to the work of the Hooks Institute and to the University of Memphis (UofM). In addition, published and completed works of visiting scholars promote the work of the Hooks Institute to a national audience.

July 2011 - July 2012

Shannen Dee Williams, Ph.D., African-American and United States history, Rutgers University, 2013. Dr. Williams is currently revising her dissertation, "Subversive Habits: Black Nuns and the Struggle to Desegregate Catholic America after World War I," into a book manuscript. Her study unearths the hidden history of black sisters in the fight to dismantle racial and gender barriers in the U.S. Catholic Church. When completed, it will be the first historical monograph on black Catholic sisters in twentieth-century America. Dr. Williams is a native of Memphis, TN and the 2000 salutatorian of Craigmont High School. She earned a B.A. from Agnes Scott College in and a M.A. in Afro-American studies from the University of Wisconsin at Madison.


Daphene R. McFerren, J.D., focused on completing interviews and compiling primary source materials on the Fayette County Movement. In October 2006, McFerren organized a two-day conference attended by persons from across the nation on The Fayette County, Tennessee Civil Rights Movement: How African Americans Changed Themselves, Their Community, and Their Nation by Demanding the Right to Vote. She is from Fayette County, TN, where her parents were nationally recognized Civil Rights activists. Ms. McFerren completed her undergraduate degree at Yale and earned her JD at Harvard.

Fall 2005

Clyde Robertson, Ph.D., the director of Africana and Multicultural Studies for the New Orleans Public School District, received his doctorate in Africana studies from Temple University in 1998. Dr. Robertson earned an M.A. in communications theory from Howard University in 1982 and a B.A. in broadcast management/mass communications from Clark University in 1981. He is the recipient of awards and honors, and the author of several publications. Dr. Robertson's work at the Hooks Institute involved memorializing the tragedy and aftermath of Katrina through the development of theatrical works.

Jason Ogle is a former native of New Orleans and former chair of the English Department at McDonogh 35 Senior High School in New Orleans. Ogle was a Fulbright Scholar in the summer of 2005 in Barbados, Trinidad, and Tobago. As a Visiting Scholar operating out of Houston, Mr. Ogle was primarily responsible for conducting interviews with high school students on Katrina's impact on their lives. In July 2006, Ogle served as the director of the Achievement Confidence Excellence (ACE) Academy, a Hooks Institute initiative [now called Hooks Youth for Social Change (HYSC)] that focused on assisting high school students in developing strong academic progress in critical reading and analytical thinking skills, logic and problem-solving, writing, and presentations.

Baderinwa Ain was the Hooks Institute's Artist-in-Residence. In July 2005, Baderinwa was a Fulbright Scholar in Barbados, Tobago, and Trinidad. Ain was also a member of the Katrina Task Force and worked with Clyde Robertson, Ph.D., to memorialize the tragedy and aftermath of Katrina through the development of theatrical works.