SACRPH Executive Officers

Nancy Kwak, President, is Associate Professor of History at the University of California San Diego. She is the author of the prize-winning Homeownership for All: American Power and the Politics of Housing Aid Post-1945 (University of Chicago Press, 2015). Professor Kwak is interested in the evolution of cities and urban spaces in the twentieth century, with a particular focus on the role of planners, architects, and policymakers in reshaping neighborhoods and communities. While trained specifically in US urban history, Professor Kwak currently pursues transnational, international, and comparative approaches to American urban history.

D. Bradford Hunt, Past-President, is Professor and Chair in the Department of History at Loyola University Chicago. From 2015-20, he was Vice President for Research and Academic Programs at the Newberry Library. Previously, he had taught and administered at Roosevelt University in Chicago. His history of the Chicago Housing Authority, Blueprint for Disaster: The Unraveling of Chicago Public Housing (University of Chicago Press, 2009), won the Lewis Mumford Prize from SACRPH. He is the co-author with Jon B. DeVries of Planning Chicago (American Planners Press, 2013) which examines urban planning initiatives in that city since the 1950s. He is on the board of the National Public Housing Museum ( He received a PhD in History from the University of California, Berkeley.

Marta Gutman, President-Elect, is an architect and architectural and urban historian. She is a professor at the Spitzer School of Architecture at the City College of New York and in the PhD Programs in Art History and Earth and Environmental Sciences at the Graduate Center, City University of New York. Her publications include A City for Children: Women, Architecture, and the Charitable Landscapes of Oakland, 1850-1950 (Chicago, 2014), named a THE book of the year (2014), and awarded several prizes including the Kenneth Jackson prize from the Urban History Association (2015) and the Spiro Kostof prize from the Society of Architectural Historians (2017). She co-edited Designing Modern Childhoods: History, Space, and the Material Culture of Children (Rutgers 2008) and Buildings & Landscapes: The Journal of the Vernacular Architecture Forum (2009-2015). Gutman’s research has been supported by the CUNY Advanced Research Collaborative, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Danish Humanities Research Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts. Her current book project is Just Space: Architecture, Education, and Inequality in Postwar Urban America (Texas, forthcoming). Gutman is a founding editor of PLATFORM.

John McCarthy, Executive Secretary, is Professor of History at Robert Morris University. His areas of interest are 20th Century urban policy, planning history, suburbanization, and race and neighborhood change. John is active in community development in his hometown, the city of Pittsburgh. He received his Ph.D. from Marquette University in 2005. He is the author of Making Milwaukee Mightier: Planning and the Politics of Growth, 1910-1960, (Northern Illinois University Press, 2009), which was awarded the 2009 Gambrinus Prize by the Milwaukee County Historical Society.   John has also served as section editor of Milwaukee Stories: Selections from the Journals of the Milwaukee County Historical Society(Marquette University Press, 2005), and published journal articles on planning history, urban youth culture, and major league baseball.

Sonia Hirt, Ex Officio as JPH Co-Editor, is Dean of the College of Environment + Design and Hughes Professor in Landscape Architecture and Planning at the University of Georgia.  Initially trained as an architect in her hometown of Sofia (the capital of Bulgaria), Sonia holds a master’s and a doctoral degree in urban and environmental planning from the University of Michigan. Prior to joining the University of Georgia, Sonia served as Dean of the School of Architecture, Planning and Preservation at the University of Maryland in College Park; Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, Virginia Tech; and Visiting Associate Professor at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design. Sonia is the author/co-author of 75+ publications. Her book “Iron Curtains: Gates, Suburbs and Privatization of Space,” published by Wiley-Blackwell, received the Honorable Mention for the Book Prize in Political and Social Studies sponsored by the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies at Harvard University. This award is given to an outstanding monograph in anthropology, political science, sociology, or geography. Her book “Zoned in the USA: The Origins and Implications of American Land Use Regulation,” published by Cornell University Press, received several academic honors. These include the Honorable Mention for the 2015 Best Book Award of the Urban Affairs Association; shortlist for the Best Book Award of the International Planning History Society; one of the Ten Best Books in Urban Planning, Design and Development of 2015 by Planetizen; list of Outstanding Academic Titles by Choice Magazine; and the John Friedmann Book Award by the Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning. Sonia is an elected Fellow of the American Institute of Certified Planners.

SACRPH Board of Directors

Alex Sayf Cummings is a historian at Georgia State University whose work examines how the transition to a postindustrial economy reshaped American culture, public policy, and the built environment.  Cummings’s first book, Democracy of Sound: Music Piracy and the Remaking of American Copyright in the Twentieth Century (Oxford, 2013).  Her next project, Brain Magnet: RTP and the Idea of the Idea Economy, looks at North Carolina’s Research Triangle region as a landscape intentionally designed and planned for the high-tech economy. She also co-edited the public history and oral history anthology East of East: The Making of Greater El Monte, 1700-2017 (Rutgers University Press, forthcoming, 2020). Dr. Cummings has received a Torbet Prize, a Whiting Fellowship, an ACLS fellowship, and a Dean’s Early Career Award and Provost’s Faculty Fellowship at Georgia State University. She is also a senior editor of the history blog Tropics of Meta. She earned a BA at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and an MA (2005) and PhD (2009) in History from Columbia University.

Zaire Z. Dinzey-Flores is an Associate Professor of Sociology and Latino & Hispanic Caribbean Studies at Rutgers University. Her research focuses on understanding how the urban built environment mediates community life and race, class, and social inequality. Her book, Locked In, Locked Out: Gated Communities in a Puerto Rican City (University Of Pennsylvania Press: 2013), winner of the 2014 Robert E. Park for best book in urban and community sociology, investigates race and class inequality as negotiated through and codified in the architecture and community gates of public housing and private subdivisions. She received a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Sociology and a Masters in Urban Planning from the University of Michigan, and a B.A. in Sociology from Harvard University.

Stephanie Frank is Assistant Professor of Urban Planning + Design at the University of Missouri-Kansas City where she directs the Graduate Certificate in Historic Preservation program. An award-winning mentor, she teaches courses in planning history, historic preservation, housing, land use planning, and urban studies. Her research examines the complexities of corporate power, industrial planning, and urban development in metropolitan America through the film industry. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Urban History, the Journal of Planning History, the Journal of Urban Design, and Buildings & Landscapes. She is an assistant editor for the Urban History Association’s blog, The Metropole. She earned her Ph.D. in Policy, Planning and Development from the University of Southern California and a B.A. and M.A. in American Studies with a Certificate in Historic Preservation from the University of Maryland.

Robert Freestone is Professor of Planning in the Faculty of Built Environment at UNSW Australia in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. He joined UNSW in 1991 after six years with Design Collaborative, a Sydney planning, research and heritage consultancy. He has also held appointments at the University of Melbourne, University of Sydney, and the Australian National University. His books include The Planning Imagination (co-editor, Routledge 2014), Urban Nation (CSIRO Publishing 2012), Designing Australian Cities (UNSW Press 2004), and Urban Planning in a Changing World (Spon 2000). He is chair of the editorial board for Planning Perspectives, and is a former president of the International Planning History Society. He has been a member of SACRPH for over a decade and sits on the editorial advisory board of Journal of Planning History.   

Evan Friss is an associate professor of history at James Madison University and the author of two books: On Bicycles: A 200-Year History of Cycling in New York City (Columbia University Press, 2019) and The Cycling City: Bicycles and Urban America in the 1890s (University of Chicago Press, 2015). He was also the guest curator of “Cycling in the City,” an exhibition at the Museum of the City of New York.

Guadalupe García specializes in the history of cities and colonialism in Latin America and the Caribbean. Her first book, Beyond the Walled City: Colonial Exclusion in Havana (University of California Press, 2016) examines the intersections of colonialism, empire, and urban space and focuses on free, black, and enslaved peoples in Havana and illustrates urban-based patterns of imperial rule.  García’s fellowships and awards include a Distinguished Fellowship at the CUNY Grad Center’s Advanced Research Collaborative and research and digital fellowships at the John Carter Brown Library. She has also held a Transatlantic Research Fellowship at the University of Warwick. Professor García is currently at work on a second book project that explores the use of digital humanities to interrogate how space, scale, and mapping can be used to counter the logic of the archive and expand our contemporary understanding of urban areas.  She earned her PhD at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Paige Glotzer is Assistant Professor & John W. and Jeanne M. Rowe Chair in the History of American Politics, Institutions, and Political Economy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her research interests include the history of housing segregation in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Her first book, entitled How the Suburbs Were Segregated: Developers and the Business of Exclusionary Housing, 1890-1960, will be published by Columbia University Press in 2020. It charts how suburban developers, including Baltimore’s Roland Park Company, ushered in modern housing segregation with the help of transnational financiers, real estate institutions, and public policymakers. She recently completed a digital project that maps the British investors who financed one of the first segregated suburbs in the United States. Future projects include a turn toward global urban history, focusing on the interactions between American realtors and Latin American consumers in the mid-twentieth century. She earned a Ph.D. in History at Johns Hopkins University.

Nick Lombardo is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Toronto. His research deals broadly with the interplay between mobility, nature, infrastructure, and the urban. His dissertation project is about the modernization of the Port of New York from 1865 to 1929. This research aims to understand the production of urban infrastructure space in relationship to mobility and the natural world under the aegis of American Imperialism and industrial capitalism. His past research examined the role of mobility, empire, and planning in the regulation of Muslim pilgrims in Colonial Bombay.

Willow Lung-Amam is Assistant Professor of Urban Studies and Planning at the University of Maryland, College Park. She is the author of Trespassers? Asian Americans and the Battle for Suburbia (University of California Press) and has written numerous articles on the topic of Asian immigrant suburbanization. Other recent projects have focused on equitable development, gentrification, the suburbanization of poverty, and the geography of opportunity. Her research has appeared also various journals and books such as Journal of Urban Design and Journal of Planning, Education and Research, and popular media outlets, including The Washington Post , The Baltimore Sun, and The Atlantic’s CityLab.

Timothy Mennel is senior editor at the University of Chicago Press, where he acquires primarily in American history and regional studies. He is responsible for the Historical Studies of Urban America series and the Chicago Visions and Revisions series, among others. Previously, he was senior editor at the American Planning Association, and he has held editorial positions at Random House, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, Artforum, and Princeton University Press. He has been a consultant to the Queens Museum of Art, the Museum of the City of New York, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Municipal Art Society of New York, among others. He coedited Reconsidering Jane Jacobs (2011) and Green Community (2009), and he has published a number of journal articles. He holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in geography from the University of Minnesota and a B.A. in English from Carleton College.

Rosemary Ndubuizu is an Assistant Professor of African American Studies at Georgetown University. Dr. Ndubuizu is an interdisciplinary scholar who studies how housing policies are shaped by race, gender, political economy, and ideology. Her untitled manuscript-in-progress historically and ethnographically traces how low-income black women have been affected by post-1970s changes in public and affordable housing policies and advocacy. Her research project also examines the contemporary landscape of affordable housing policy and politics to better understand why low-income black women remain vulnerable to eviction, displacement, and housing insecurity in cities like the District of Columbia. Additionally, her work presents the organizing challenges low-income black women tenant activists in D.C. face as they organize to combat the city’s reduction and privatization of affordable housing.  Dr. Ndubuizu earned her bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and her PhD from Rutgers University.

Angel Nieves is Dr. Angel David Nieves is Professor of History & Digital Humanities in the Department of History in the College of Arts and Letters (CAL) at San Diego State University whose scholarship focuses on the intersections of race, gender, sexuality, and technology in the U.S. and South Africa. He is the author and co-editor of two historical monographs, including “An Architecture of Education: African American Women Design the New South” (U Rochester, 2018) and “’We Shall Independent Be:’ African American Place Making and the Struggle to Claim Space in the U.S.” (w/Alexander) (UPColorado, 2008), plus a range of cutting-edge digital history publications and experimental online platforms. Among these are “Soweto’76 3D,” comprising digital archive and virtual reality research into politically fraught sites such as the Nelson Mandela House in Soweto, Johannesburg. Nieves has received support for his work from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and while Co-Director of the Digital Humanities Initiative (2009-2017) at Hamilton College he helped raise over $2.7 million dollars in research support for digital scholarship. He was Presidential Visiting Associate Professor in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGSS) and the DHLab at Yale University (2017-2018).

Meredith Drake Reitan is an Associate Dean of the Graduate School at the University of Southern California and an adjunct professor in USC’s Sol Price School of Public Policy and the School of Architecture where she teaches classes on planning theory, history and cultural heritage. Her primary research interests include the planning profession, cultural landscapes and public space. She has published in the Journal of Planning History, the Journal of Urban Design, the Journal of Architectural and Planning Research and the Journal of the American Planning Association. She is currently at work on a history of the Los Angeles Civic Center. Drake Reitan has a PhD and a Masters in Planning from USC.

Elihu Rubin is Associate Professor of Architecture, Urbanism, and American Studies at Yale University, a secondary appointment in American Studies. His work bridges the urban disciplines, focusing on the built environments of nineteenth and twentieth-century cities, the history and theory of city planning, urban geography and the cultural landscape, transportation and mobility, architectural preservation, heritage planning, and the social life of urban space. Rubin is the author of Insuring the City: The Prudential Center and the Postwar Urban Landscape (Yale University Press, 2012) which received best book awards from the Urban History Association and the Society for American City and Regional Planning History (SACRPH). He is co-founder of the documentary film company American Beat and has produced a trilogy of films about social history and cultural landscapes in New Haven, among other projects. As a professor at Yale, he has initiated a range of community-based teaching, research, and representation projects, including “Interactive Crown Street,” the “New Haven Building Archive,” and “Excavating the Armory,” which cultivates public reflection on the preservation and adaptive reuse of the Goffe Street Armory.

Stephanie Ryberg-Webster is Associate Professor of Urban Studies in the Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University, where she also directs the Master of Urban Planning and Development program. Her research explores the complex intersections of historic preservation and urban development, including preservation (and demolition) in legacy cities, synergies and tensions between preservation and community development, federal and state historic rehabilitation tax credits, and the preservation of Cleveland’s African American heritage. Dr. Ryberg-Webster’s current work explores the 1970s-era history of historic preservation in Cleveland, as urban disinvestment escalated. Dr. Ryberg-Webster teaches courses in urban planning, historic preservation, urban design, and contemporary urban issues. She earned a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, a Master of Historic Preservation from the University of Maryland and a Bachelor of Urban Planning from the University of Cincinnati.

J. Mark Souther is Professor of History at Cleveland State University. He is the author of Believing in Cleveland: Managing Decline in ‘The Best Location in the Nation,’ (Temple University Press, 2017) and New Orleans on Parade: Tourism and the Transformation of the Crescent City (Louisiana State University Press, 2006, 2013), which won the Kemper & Leila Williams Prize from the Historic New Orleans Collection and Louisiana Historical Association and the Michael Thomason Gulf South History Book Award from the Gulf South Historical Association. He is co-editor (with Nicholas Dagen Bloom) of American Tourism: Constructing a National Tradition (Center for American Places; University of Chicago Press, 2012). His next book project focuses on Georgia’s Fall Line cities of Augusta, Macon, and Columbus from Reconstruction to the present.

Sanjeev Vidyarthi is Associate Professor of Urban Planning at the University of Illinois, Chicago. Vidyarthi’s research interests include ideas and actions in the domains of spatial planning and design, planning history and theory, globalization and international planning. He studies who does (and should do) the planning work and some of the differences these efforts make. His projects involves helping actors and communities make better plans that bridge the many divides in society and improve the quality of urban life. His work as appeared in the Journal of Planning History, Town Planning Review, Planning Theory and Practice, and the edited collection Transforming Asian Cities, among other venues.


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