Media Contacts

Emily Vincent
Director, University Media Relations
evincen2@kent.edu
330-672-8595

Bob Burford
Marketing/External Relations Coordinator
rburford@kent.edu
330-672-8516

Experts & Witnesses

To request an interview with one or more of the following May 4 experts and witnesses, please contact Emily Vincent ( evincen2@kent.edu or 330-672-8595) or Bob Burford ( rburford@kent.edu or 330-672-8516) of the university’s media relations team.

Witnesses

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Laura Davis

Kent State University professor of English and the faculty coordinator for May 4 initiatives
Laura Davis
is a Kent State University professor of English and the faculty coordinator for May 4 initiatives. In addition, she is the project director for a first-year experience project in the College of Communication and Information. She was a freshman on campus during the 1970 events. Working with university and community members, she coordinated and co-led the creation of an audio-guided walking tour of the May 4 historic site that was dedicated during the 40th anniversary.

Davis is active in developing the Kent State May 4 Visitors Center. She and Carole Barbato, a communications studies professor at Kent State, co-teach the university’s May 4 course and co-chaired the 2009 Symposium on Democracy. Davis is one of the four co-authors of the application to add the May 4 site to the National Register of Historic Places, which was approved in February 2010.

Mark Seeman

Mark Seeman

Kent State University anthropology professor
Mark Seeman is a Kent State University anthropology professor who spearheaded the application to add the May 4 site to the National Register of Historic Places. Seeman is one of the four co-authors of the application, and the site was added to the list in February 2010. Seeman is also active in developing the Kent State May 4 Visitors Center.

Carole Barbato

Carole Barbato

Kent State University communication studies professor
Carole Barbato is a communication studies professor for Kent State University at East Liverpool. She was a student at Kent State during the 1970 events. Working with university and community members, she co-led the creation of an audio-guided walking tour of the May 4 historic site that was dedicated during the 40th anniversary. Barbato is active in developing the Kent State May 4 Visitors Center. She and Laura Davis, an English professor at Kent State, co-teach the university’s May 4 course and co-chaired the 2009 Symposium on Democracy. Barbato is one of the four co-authors of the application to add the May 4 site to the National Register of Historic Places, which was approved in February 2010.

Jerry Lewis

Jerry M. Lewis

Kent State Professor emeritus of sociology
Jerry M. Lewis is a professor emeritus of sociology at Kent State University. Serving as a faculty marshal in 1970, he witnessed the 1970 events first hand. He has devoted his time to researching, memorializing and lecturing since the events took place. Lewis co-authored an analysis of the May 4 shootings with Thomas R. Hensley, a professor emeritus of political science. Lewis is one of the four co-authors of the application to add the May 4 site to the National Register of Historic Places, which was approved in February 2010.

Thomas Grace was one of the wounded students on May 4, 1970, at Kent State University. He is a scholar and instructor of American history. He specializes in dissent and the protest movement in the 1960s and is author of “Kent State: A Legacy of Dissent, 1958-1973,” forthcoming from University of Massachusetts Press. He brings a unique perspective as a history scholar and student wounded at Kent State to contextualizing May 4 in its times. He lectures and teaches at colleges in Western New York.

Jay Winter is the Charles J. Stille professor of history at Yale University. He is an expert on war and remembrance, which includes his scholarship on “public” and “collective” history and the “memory boom.” He is the author/co-author of 14 books and has edited 16 others. He served as the co-producer and chief historian for the PBS/BBC television series “The Great War and the Shaping of the 20th Century,” which won an Emmy Award, Peabody Award, and Producers Guild of America Award for best documentary in 1997. Winter also is founding member and designer of the Historial de la grand guerre (international museum of the First World War) in Péronne, Somme, France.

Renee Romano is an associate professor of history at Oberlin College. She specializes in the history of race relations in the United States since World War II. She is author of “Race Mixing: Black-White Marriage in Postwar America” and co-editor of “The Civil Rights Movement in American Memory.” Her current book project (forthcoming from Harvard University Press) is tentatively titled “Justice Delayed: Civil Rights Trials and America’s Racial Reckoning.”

Doug Fuller is president of Fuller Design Group – Architects in Kent, Ohio. He was a sophomore architecture student at Kent State University when the May 4, 1970, events occurred. Though he did not see the shootings, he was nearby and spent some time in the area of the shootings as people were trying to help those who had been injured. He stayed in Kent, marrying a local, and for many years, he did not tell people that he was near the shootings when they occurred. Fuller is past president of Main Street Kent and a member of the Kent Historical Society and Kent Area Chamber of Commerce.

Franco Ruffini serves as deputy state historic preservation officer at the Ohio Historic Preservation Office. He oversees the Inventory & Registration, Technical Preservation Services, and Resource Protection and Review departments. Ruffini also administers the Certified Local Government program.

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