Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab Research Team

Students from the Fall 2018 Research Team for the Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab at the Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan, Sept. 20, 2018

Jamie and Brendan (on left), with Allison Tuohy of Team 3, at the Walter Reuther Library, Wayne State University

Team 1: Mahal Stevens, Jamie Murray, Brendan Bernardo

Team 1 researched and produced the content for Section I of the exhibit, "Civil Rights and Police Brutality, 1957-1963," and the accompanying section of the "Detroit Under Fire" ARC GIS StoryMap.

Mahal Stevens is a senior from Ann Arbor, Michigan. She is majoring in Women’s Studies and minoring in History. After graduating, Mahal plans to take a gap year and hopes to enter graduate school in 2020 for either Feminist Studies or History. Her research interests include public history, Black women’s history, and local history.

Jamie Murray is a senior from Boston, MA and is majoring in History. After working with many residents of Detroit and getting to know the city through a Michigan student organization, she is passionate about improving Detroit police and community relations.

Brendan Bernardo is a junior from Los Angeles, California. He is majoring in History, with a particular passion for 20th century history in major American cities. He hopes to pursue a career in Film using experience and knowledge gained studying history.

Bessie Smith (Mahal


Jamie Murray

Brendan Bernardo

Touring the Reuther Stacks

Team 2 Investigating the Site of the 1966 Kercheval Incident/"Mini-Riot"

Team 2: Hannah Thoms, Jack Mahon, Jesse Blumberg

Team 2 researched and produced the content for Section II of the exhibit, "Liberal War on Crime, 1964-1966," and the accompanying section of the  "Detroit Under Fire" ARC GIS StoryMap. 

Hannah Thoms is a senior from Flushing, Michigan. She is studying Anthropology with minors in History and Museum Studies. She will graduate in May 2019 and pursue a career in museums because she believes that they, as well as public history projects such as this one, can inspire social change.

Jack Mahon is a 3rd year undergraduate hailing from Reading, Pennsylvania. He is majoring in History with a minor in Law, Justice, and Social Change. Jack strives to abolish injustice within American law enforcement, fight mass incarceration, and defend nonviolent offenders as a criminal defense attorney. 

Jesse Blumberg is from New York City. She is a senior studying History and minoring in Community Action and Social Change. She is passionate about social justice and plans to attend graduate school to receive her master’s degree in education and become a teacher.

Team 2 won the University of Michigan Library Research Award for best undergraduate research project during the 2018-2019 academic year.  Read the citation here.

Hannah Thoms

Jack Mahon

Jesse Blumberg

Team 2 at DPD Headquarters

Team 3 (John, Allison, Kori) Researching the 1967 Detroit Uprising at the Bentley Historical Library

Team 3: Allison Tuohy, Kori Thomas, John Kistler

Team 3 researched and produced the content for  Section III of the exhibit, "Uprising and Occupation, 1967" (except for the "Visualizing Detroit '67" subsection) and the accompanying section of the  "Detroit Under Fire" ARC GIS StoryMap. 

Allison Tuohy is a senior from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She is studying Community and Global Health in the School of Public Health with a minor in Science, Technology, and Society. Allison is passionate about the city of Detroit, specifically regarding social justice, urban health, and education policies.

Kori Thomas is a junior from Lathrup Village, Michigan. She is currently obtaining a degree in Neuroscience. In the future, she plans to combine her interests in public policy and neuroscience by pursuing a Masters in Public Health.

John Kistler is a junior from Arkansas majoring in Social Theory & Practice and History. He studies the development of domestic and foreign U.S. policy and how its structural issues and outcomes shape the world today. He currently works as a labor organizer and prisoners’ rights advocate.

Allison Tuohy

Kori Thomas

John Kistler

Team 3 Map Workshop

Three Team 4 Members (Khadija, Aidan, Sahil) at the Reuther Library in Detroit

Team 4: Khadija Williams, Aidan Traynor, Sahil Patel, Robert Joseph

Team 4 researched and produced the content for Section IV of the exhibit, "Black Power and Police Violence, 1968-1970," and the accompanying section of the "Detroit Under Fire" ARC GIS StoryMap. 

Khadija Williams is a senior from Chicago, Illinois, and is majoring in History. After graduating, she plans to take a gap year working as a flight attendant so that she can travel the world. She hopes to attend law school in 2020 and then practice civil and criminal law in Florida. 

Aidan Traynor is a senior from Clare, Michigan. She is majoring in history and plans to attend law school and to practice law in Detroit. She intends to work in the areas of civil, human, immigration and/or environmental law.

Sahil Patel is a senior from Griffin, Georgia. He is majoring in Philosophy, Politics, & Economics with a minor in the History of Law and Policy and a minor in Religion. He is interested in further exploring the intersection of data and cultural legal orders through a career in law.

Robert Joseph is a senior from Clarkston, Michigan. He is majoring in History with a minor in Political Science and a minor in Crime and Justice. Currently conducting an honors thesis regarding school criminalization in Detroit, he hopes to pursue a career in policy, politics, and/or law.

Khadija Williams

Aidan Traynor

Sahil Patel

Robert Joseph

Team 5 (Austyn, Casey, Dom) with anti-STRESS Posters at the Reuther Library, Wayne State University

Team 5: Austyn Marks, Casey Jong, Dominic Coschino

Team 5 researched and produced the content for Section III of the exhibit, "STRESS and Radical Response," and the accompanying section of the "Detroit Under Fire" ARC GIS StoryMap. 

Austyn Marks is a senior from New York City. She is majoring in History with a minor in History of Art. She is passionate about police and prison reform and hopes to attend law school to be an advocate for those passing through the criminal justice system and affected by mass incarceration.

Casey Jong is from Ann Arbor, Michigan. She is in her fourth year at the University of Michigan studying Comparative Literature. She believes in citizen oversight of police for all communities.

Dominic Coschino is from Roseville, Michigan. He is a senior studying Political Science and History. He believes in using law to empower disaffected communities and dismantle the carceral state. He plans to start law school in 2020.

Austyn Marks

Casey Jong

Dominic Coschino

Team 5 (with John Kistler of Team 3) at Burton Collection, Detroit Public Library

Nicole Navarro presents findings of Detroit Under Fire project to the Documenting Criminalization and Confinement research team

Editorial Team: Matt Lassiter, Nicole Navarro, Lily Johnston, Gregory Parker

Matt Lassiter, overall editor and contributor to each section of Detroit Under Fire, is Professor of History and Arthur F. Thurnau Professor at the University of Michigan and the Director of the Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab. He is a scholar of the twentieth-century United States with a research and teaching focus on political history, urban/suburban studies, racial and social inequality, and the history of policing and the carceral state. Professor Lassiter is also on the steering committee of the U-M Carceral State Project and the co-PI of its Documenting Criminalization and Confinement research initiative. He has led undergraduate teams in the creation of seven book-length digital exhibits, including the Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab projects Detroit Under Fire: Police Violence, Crime Politics, and the Struggle for Racial Justice in the Civil Rights Era (1957-1973) and Crackdown: Policing Detroit through the War on Crime, Drugs, and Youth (1974-1993).

Nicole Navarro, lead editor and contributor to the "Detroit Under Fire: Mapping Police Violence and Misconduct" ArcGIS StoryMaps, is a Ph.D. Student in History and the Graduate Supervisor of the Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab. Nicole’s dissertation research focuses on the urban and political history of policing, education, and housing in late-20th century Washington, D.C. through a comparative multiracial lens. She also worked as the lab supervisor and mapping consultant for the second Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab course in Fall 2019, for the exhibit Crackdown: Policing Detroit through the War on Crime, Drugs, and Youthcovering the 1974-1993 period.

Lily Johnston, an undergraduate student from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, is a researcher in the Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab who was also part of the student team for the Crackdown exhibit. She did extensive work after the end of this class project by adding content to the police brutality and police homicides pages on Detroit Under Fire, especially in Sections 1 and 4, and also contributing to the synthetic StoryMap for Section 4.    

Gregory Parker is manager of Public Engagement programming, including public history projects and website exhibit development and consulting, in the Department of History and manager of the Eisenberg Institute for Historical Studies. 

Matt Lassiter

Nicole Navarro

Lily Johnston

Greg Parker

Policing and Social Justice HistoryLab, Fall 2018/History 393 Research Team

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