Project Faculty and Staff

Directors

Dr. Sarah Ruffing Robbins will serve as a Project Co-director. As founding director of the Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project, an NWP site in Georgia, Sarah (co)directed numerous projects funded by the Georgia Humanities Council and NEH. These included (for NEH) Domesticating the Secondary Canon (an institute for secondary English and history teachers), Making American Literatures (linking multiple NWP sites in a two-year curriculum initiative) and Keeping and Creating American Communities (which produced the participant essay collections Writing America and Writing Our Communities). Recognized by the Georgia Humanities Council for her public humanities role, Sarah has won teaching awards at both KSU and TCU, where she now holds an endowed chair in American Literature. Sarah’s traditional humanities scholarship includes 8 peer-reviewed books, the most recent of which (Learning Legacies) argues for public cultural work grounded in historical study as a path to promoting community. Prior books include the Choice-winning Managing Literacy, Mothering America, The Cambridge Introduction to Harriet Beecher Stowe, and the co-edited critical edition, Nellie Arnott’s Writings on Angola. Her scholarship has won national-level prizes from both the American Studies Association and the Society for the Study of American Women Writers. As co-editor for a American literature book series at Edinburgh University Press, Sarah links her studies of national literature, history, and culture with comparative transnational research.

Dr. Robert Brooke will serve as the local site Project Co-Director for Writing Home.  Since 1994, he has directed the Nebraska Writing Project, one of the National Writing Project’s oldest and most active sites.   One of the emphases of the Nebraska Writing Project has been the development of place-based teaching, or the linking of educational programs to local cultural and natural resources (see the site position statement here). Robert has facilitated teams of teachers exploring rural small town teaching (Rural Voices: Place-Conscious Education and the Teaching of Writing, [NY: Teachers College Press, 2003]) as well as suburban place teaching (Writing Suburban Citizenship: Place-Conscious Education and the Conundrum of Suburbia [Syracuse UP 2015]).  In addition to his scholarship, he has also developed several community-based programs serving the region, including (with Humanities Nebraska) the Poetry of Place Celebration (2007-current year) for teachers and students across the state and the Nebraska Warrior Writers workshops (2015-current year) for veterans and families in the large Nebraska communities of Grand Island, Lincoln, and Omaha.  He also served as the original editor for the National Council of Teachers of English book series, Studies in Writing and Rhetoric, from 1997-2007– a series that garnered eight national awards, including MLA and CCCC, during his editorship.

Dr. Tanya Baker is Director of National Programs for NWP. She has designed significant new face-to-face blended learning opportunities for teacher-leaders, including in 2006 Celebrating Rural Poetry (an initiative developed in collaboration with the Rural School and Community Trust) and C3WP: College, Career and Community Writers Program. She has over two decades of experience in education, including 12 years as secondary school teacher. She holds an Ed.D. from the University of Maine. Tanya will serve as NWP project director, organizing and leading project planning and NWP site coordination, as well as lead dissemination efforts and website development.