Leading the Charge
Founder and Director of the Social Justice Institute
Associate Professor of History
Social Justice Institute founder and director Rhonda Y. Williams, PhD is an associate professor of history and the founder and director of the postdoctoral fellowship in African American studies at Case Western Reserve University.
Her research interests include:
- Manifestations of race and gender inequality on urban space and policy,
- History of low-income people's lives and activism,
- Social justice and movements and
- Illicit narcotics economies in the post-1940s United States.
The author of Concrete Demands: The Search for Black Power in the 20th Century (2015) and the award-winning The Politics of Public Housing: Black Women's Struggles against Urban Inequality (2005), Williams has been honored by History News Network as a Top Young Historian; the Organization of American Historians as a Distinguished Lecturer; and is listed in the 2009 and 2015 editions of Who's Who in Black Cleveland. Williams is a recipient of an American Association of University Women Postdoctoral Fellowship and a former Harvard University W.E.B. Du Bois Institute Fellow. She is the co-editor of the recently launched book series, Justice, Power, and Politics, with the University of North Carolina Press and co-editor of Teaching the American Civil Rights Movement.
Williams received her PhD in history from the University of Pennsylvania in 1998 and her undergraduate degree in journalism from the University of Maryland College Park in 1989, where she became that university's first black salutatorian in its then 187-year history.
Dr. Rhonda with Angela Y. Davis, activist and scholar, at Think Tank 2015.