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CLASS and other UH Professors share expertise during Women’s History Month

Scholars discuss research on women’s political and cultural influence in U.S. and world

In recognition of March as Women’s History Month, experts at the University of Houston (UH) are available to discuss a range of topics about women’s contributions to past and present society and their political and cultural influence in the United States.


Prof. Amanda Baumle

Amanda K. Baumle is an associate professor of sociology. Her research examines the effect of state laws on children in same-sex households, including the manner in which the law affects the decision to become a parent, the method of becoming a parent and everyday parenting decisions. The project involves the analysis of approximately 150 LGBTQ parents nationwide in order to examine the role of varying legal contexts on parenting outcomes. Reach her at 713-743-3944 or


Nancy Beck Young

Nancy Beck Young, professor of history and chair of the department, is a scholar of modern American politics. Her research questions how political institutions have shaped the lives of average people through public policy. Much of her work involves the study of Congress, the presidency and first ladies. She has written a biography of Lou Henry Hoover, the wife of President Herbert Hoover, and also a biography of a Texas woman, Frances Goff, who was integral to the success of M.D. Anderson in its early years. Reach her at


Beverly McPhail

Beverly McPhail is director of UH’s Women’s Resource Center. Her primary area of interest is violence against women and the status of women. She co-authored, “Confronting Sexism and Violence Against Women,” as well as a report on the status of women and girls in the greater Houston area. Reach her at 832-842-6194 or


Norma Olvera

Norma Olvera, professor of health education in the UH College of Education and director of the BOUNCE (Behavior Opportunities Uniting Nutrition Counseling and Exercise) program, designs interventions to prevent and treat obesity. Her award-winning BOUNCE healthy lifestyle programs are nationally recognized as effective obesity treatments. One feature of the BOUNCE experience, involves the girls and their mothers. Olvera, who studies how family, environment and culture affect diet and physical activity, strives to educate both mothers and daughters about health, lifestyles to prevent obesity and its related illnesses. Reach her at 832-842-5925 or


Linda Reed

Linda Reed is an associate professor of history and a noted scholar in African American history, with a particular interest in women and the South. Her book, “Simple Decency and Common Sense: The Southern Conference Movement, 1938-1963,” concentrates on the forgotten years of the civil rights movement. Reed is also co-editor of "We Specialize in the Wholly Impossible: A Reader in Black Women's History.” Reach her at 713-743-3092 or


Samantha Kwan

Samantha Kwan is an assistant professor of sociology. She conducts research in the areas of body, gender and health, focusing on how cultural and social structures shape physical and psychological well-being. Her work examines the social construction of bodies, embodied resistance and body modification practices. She is co-editor of “Embodied Resistance” and co-author of “Framing Fat.” She can comment on the sociology of the body and the sociology of gender. Reach Kwan at 713-743-3948 or


Susan Kellogg

Susan Kellogg is a professor of history and director of Latin American Studies. Her research focuses on indigenous peoples, law and women in Latin America, particularly Mexico. She also studies colonialism and cultural change, and the impact of each on Latin American history. She is the author of “Weaving the Past: A History of Latin America’s Indigenous Women from the Prehispanic Period to the Present.” Reach Kellogg at 713-743-3118 or


Elizabeth Gregory

Elizabeth Gregory is the director of the Women’s Gender & Sexuality Studies Program at UH and a professor of English. She is the author of “Ready: Why Women Are Embracing the New Later Motherhood,” which explores the trend in women starting families after the age of 35 and the politics and economics of the intersections between women's paid and home work. Her research, based on interviews with 113 new later moms (and a few dads) and on extensive collateral research, found that for the most part older mothers were happy and provided some unique benefits to mothers and their children. The latest edition was updated in August 2012, tracking the recent dramatic fall in the birth rate in all age groups except later moms and its link to women's work options. Reach Gregory at 713-743-0932 or