Director & Staff

Melanie Shell-Weiss, Director

Melanie Shell-Weiss, Director

In January 2013, the Brooks College of Interdisciplinary Studies appointed Melanie Shell-Weiss, Ph.D. to direct the Kutsche Office of Local History. An Associate Professor of Liberal Studies at GVSU, Melanie holds a Ph.D. in History (2002) and an M.A. in American Studies (1996) from Michigan State University. As a postdoctoral fellow at Johns Hopkins University from 2003-2006 and visiting assistant professor from 2006-2011, in the Department of History and Center for Africana Studies, Melanie produced two books in local and public history: Coming to Miami: A Social History and Florida’s Working Class Past: Perspectives on Labor, Race, and Gender.  Her current research focuses on examining ethics and best practices of doing community engaged, collaborative scholarship in the field of public history.

An experienced oral historian, Melanie takes the Kutsche Office's mission of "giving voice to diverse communities through history" to heart. Under her direction, the Kutsche Office is dedicated to expanding its engagement with GVSU faculty, staff, and students while also working closely with community partners to help them realize community-based documentation efforts. Contributing to GVSU's pipeline and retention efforts by expanding primary resource collections focused on underrepresented/marginalized communities while also supporting teaching, learning, and research efforts, and connecting diverse faculty/students/staff and community members are core parts of this work.

Office Address: 324B Lake Ontario Hall
Phone: (616) 331-8059
Email:  shellm@gvsu.edu

 


Courtney Sherwood

Courtney Sherwood

Office Coordinator

In February 2014, the Kutsche Office of Local History welcomed Courtney Sherwood as the new office coordinator. A Grand Haven native, Courtney began working at GVSU in 2002. She has worked in the Dean’s Office of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences for eight years, wearing many hats including providing grant support. As an extension of desire to advocate for the elderly she co-facilitates a support group on campus for Alzheimer’s caregivers. Courtney holds a B.A. in Writing from Vermont College of Norwich University. She continues to write in her spare moments she finds while raising two daughters. Her family recently moved to Allendale and spends their time together traveling and learning. Courtney began her work with the Kutsche Office in February 2014.

 


Office Address: 324 Lake Ontario Hall
Phone: (616) 331-8099
Email: sherwoco@gvsu.edu

 

Belinda Bardwell

Belinda Bardwell

Project Manager, Gi-gikinomaage-min (We are all teachers) and Graduate Assistant

Belinda Bardwell (LTBB) is a graduate student in Public Administration at GVSU and holds a B.S. in Liberal Studies. An accomplished community leader, Lin chairs the Grand Rapids Community Relations Commission. She has served as project coodinator and spokesperson for the "Gi-gikinomaage-min (We are all teachers): Defend Our History, Unlock Your Spirit" initiative since is launch in August 2014. Lin is also one of the project's lead oral historians. We are delighted to have Lin as a graduate assistant in the Kutsche Office of Local History.
 

 

Office Address: 324 Lake Ontario Hall
Phone: (616) 331-8099
Email: linbardwell@yahoo.com