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WIU Department of History Chair Jennifer McNabb
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McNabb Named Chair of WIU Department of History

June 14, 2017

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MACOMB, IL – Western Illinois University Professor Jennifer McNabb has been named chair of the WIU Department of History, according to College of Arts and Sciences Dean Susan Martinelli-Fernandez.

McNabb has served as the department's interim chair since August 2016.

She joined WIU's faculty in 2005 as an assistant professor of history and served as the associate director of WIU's Centennial Honors College from 2012-14.

"I am delighted Professor McNabb is assuming the continuing position of chair of the Department of History," said Martinelli-Fernandez. "Her well-known and respected leadership at Western Illinois University, and her professional organizations, as well as her outstanding teaching and scholarship, are a winning combination for success. McNabb has already initiated a number of recruitment, retention and advancement initiatives that I look forward to coming to fruition over the coming years."

While at Western, McNabb has published her research in scholarly journals, including "The Sixteenth Century Journal" and "Women's History," and she has authored numerous teaching supplements for textbook publishers. She regularly presents her work at panel discussions and at local, regional, national and international conferences. Her professional service activities have included terms as program committee chair for both the Midwest Conference on British Studies and the Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association, and she currently serves as president of the latter professional organization.

McNabb has a demonstrated record of service to the Macomb and campus communities that was honored with the Provost's Award for Academic Excellence in University/Community Service in 2012. She has chaired campus-level committees, including the University Graduate Council and the Writing Instruction in the Discipline Committee, and has twice served as vice chair of the Faculty Senate and vice chair of the Council of Curricular Programs and Instruction. McNabb has also served as advisor for a variety of academic, service and social organizations for students, including the Associated Students of History, the Alpha Epsilon Chapter of Alpha Sigma Tau Sorority and the Mu Kappa Chapter of Sigma Alpha Iota, the women's music fraternity. She regularly offers continuing education courses through WIU's Learning Is ForEver (LIFE) program. 

In addition to her scholarship and service activities, McNabb has received numerous awards for her teaching and her work on campus, including being chosen to deliver the 10th annual John Hallwas Liberal Arts Lecture in 2012, and being honored for her work with Golden Key International Honour Society; she has been awarded faculty membership in the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi and Phi Beta Delta Honor Society of International Scholars and has received the status of Distinguished Member of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. In 2009, she won the Provost's Award for Academic Excellence in Teaching and has published articles on pedagogy in "Quidditas," the Journal of the Rocky Mountain Medieval and Renaissance Association. She regularly speaks at conferences for teachers in the region and has worked with the College Board Advanced Placement European History Program since 2006, achieving the position of Assistant Chief Reader at the 2017 annual Reading. Last year McNabb was selected to prepare a course for "The Great Courses" on The Renaissance, which includes filming a video series of 48 30-minute lectures during the 2017-18 academic year. 

McNabb received her bachelor's degree from Adrian College in Adrian, MI; her master's degree from Bowling Green State University in Ohio and her doctorate degree from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

For additional information on the WIU Department of History, visit

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