Honors Preceptor and Lecturer, Department of History
B.A ., Religious Studies, Syracuse University
M.A. in Divinity, University of Chicago Divinity School
J.D., Temple University School of Law
Ph.D. , History, University of Maine
I am a Preceptor in the Honors College and an Instructor of History at the University of Maine. I received my doctorate of History from the University of Maine. My research focus is the early colonial history of North America, and in particular, the history of the French colony of Acadia. Acadia extended over what is today Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and half of Maine before the French lost it to the British in the beginning of the eighteenth century.
Prior to getting my doctorate, I worked for over twenty years as an environmental lawyer, in both the public sector and for a private non-profit. During that time, I represented the public’s interest in a clean and healthy environment before all levels of federal and state courts and administrative agencies.
My doctoral work in history wasn’t the first time I had gone to graduate school. Before attending law school, I received a Masters degree from the Divinity School of the University of Chicago. My plan had been to someday teach religious studies at the college level – that is, before I decided to go to law school. The desire to teach in the humanities, however, never left me, and when, after years practicing law I was given the opportunity to get a Ph.D. – this time in history – I took it.
I teach in the Honors program because I love to read, and write, and talk about big questions with others. I find in discussion with students, I often see things in completely new ways, and it is my hope that my students do as well. Being a preceptor in Honors allows me to bring my varied experience and areas of learning to bear on questions such as: What does it mean to be human? What is justice? What responsibilities do we owe to each other, and to the natural world? I am a preceptor in Honors because I know of no other course of study at the University where one can read the great books, and, together with students, try to tease out the answer to the most fundamental questions we face, as individuals and as members of a community.