Paul Theobald is the Dean, School of Education, at Buena Vista University, Storm Lake, Iowa. Prior to that, he held the positions of Interim Dean, School of Education, the Woods-Beals Endowed Chair in Urban and Rural Education, and Chair, Department of Social and Psychological Foundations at Buffalo State College in Buffalo, NY. He is an educational historian whose work frequently crosses disciplinary boundaries.
John Henry lives in Hastings, Minnesota; he has been a Minnesotan for most of his life. He studied Philosophy and English Literature at Saint John’s University, Collegeville, MN, and attended two graduate schools but did not finish an advanced degree. Most of his adult life has been spent raising his six children and keeping house for his family, vocations which are ongoing. John has been writing for the Rural Lit RALLY initiative for some time now. Originally contributing to the blog discussions, his writing style and extensive knowledge base are impressive, so we invited him to write book reviews for us. When offered the challenge of writing the introduction to Unrestorable Habitats: Microsoft is My Neighbor Now, he graciously accepted.
Page Lambert is one of the pre-eminent authors of today’s rural/place-based literature. As her website so aptly puts it, Page “connects people with nature; connects writers with words.”
Jesse Longhurst is a doctoral student at New Mexico State University and an instructor at Rogue Community College in Southern Oregon. As a child of the rural Pacific Northwest herself and a teacher of rural students, Jesse has a strong interest in rural education, place-based education, rural lifeways and rural stories. The Rural Lit R.A.L.L.Y. project struck a chord because it combines two things about which Jesse is passionate: storytelling and rural places.
Mark Munger is a sitting district court judge in Duluth, Minnesota. A writer in his own right, his work has been published in Writer’s Journal, and his essay “Leaving Mayo” was a finalist for the 2000 Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Writing Award. He is “passionate about good books – new good books, old good books, just plain good books that may or may not be or have ever been.”
Personal statement: I am passionate about good books. New good books, old good books, just plain good books that may or may not be or have ever been bestsellers. Once I read Herbert Krause’s Wind Without Rain, a book I’d never heard of, I was hooked on the Depression-era-hard luck-farmer genre. Many folks have no idea this type of literature exists. It’s time to ensure that the stories of our parents and grandparents from that time are preserved: not as museum or library pieces, but as living words. That, in a nutshell, is why I became involved with the Rural Lit R.A.L.L.Y.
David Pichaske is an associate professor at Southwestern Minnesota State University, where he occasionally teaches a course in rural/place-based literature (see samples of his syllabi on the “academic resources page). A publisher of rural/place-based literature, he’s a noted scholar of Bob Dylan. Recognizing the need to preserve and promote rural/place based literature, Dr. Pichaske made the first donation of books to the Rural Lit RALLY Library.
Linda M. Hasselstrom is a Special Consultant to the Rural Lit RALLY project. Ms. Hasselstrom has been tremendously supportive of RLR in a rather “behind the scenes” way since she became our second author interview in late 2011, providing guidance and input as RLR has grown and set new goals for itself. We owe her an exceptional debt of gratitude, and look forward to her continued association with RLR.