superhero team with fists in a circle

Meet the Grant Team

The SDSU Project Team, Pamela Jackson and Elizabeth Pollard, will collaborate with two grant advisors, Jenny Robb (Curator, Billy Ireland Cartoon Library, Ohio State) and Maryanne Rhett (Comics Scholar; Professor of History and Anthropology, Monmouth University). A White Paper Working Group consisting of the above professionals and four librarians to be identified will meet in spring 2023 to finalize recommendations. Our team also includes SDSU students and the graphic recording firm, A Visual Approach.  

Pam JacksonPamela Jackson

Pamela Jackson has been a library faculty member in the California State University system since 2002. She is the Comic Arts Curator in Special Collections and University Archives at San Diego State University, and the Founding Co-Director of SDSU’s Center for Comics Studies in the College of Arts and Letters. She is also the archivist for San Diego Comic Fest. Pam manages a comic arts collection of approximately 100K published, archival, and ephemeral items. She co-created [email protected] (now the Center for Comics Studies), where she works to include comics in the curriculum and foster the next generation of comics scholars. She has written numerous articles about comics and pop culture for academic publications and has presented at Comic-Con International, San Diego Comic Fest, and the Popular Culture Association. Pam was honored to serve as a judge for the 2021 Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards. She has an MA in English with an emphasis on Creative Writing from Sonoma State University, an MA in Library and Information Studies from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and a Professional Certificate in Rare Books and Manuscripts from the California Rare Book School at UCLA.

Beth Pollard

Elizabeth Pollard

Dr. Elizabeth Pollard is Distinguished Professor for Teaching Excellence at San Diego State University, where she has been teaching courses in Roman History, World History, and witchcraft studies since 2002. She co-leads the Comics @ SDSU collaborative (2019-present) and is co-Champion of Comics and Social Justice for the SDSU President’s Big Ideas Initiative (2020-present). Pollard recently debuted a new Comics and History course that explores sequential art from the paleolithic to the present day. Her research investigates women accused of witchcraft in the Roman world and explores the exchange of goods and ideas between the Mediterranean and the Indian Ocean in the early centuries of the Common Era. She is currently working on a graphic history exploring the influence of classical understandings of witchcraft on modern pop-culture representations of witches (from comics to film). Apart from her work on magic and comics, Pollard is co-author of Worlds Together Worlds Apart Concise, WTWA Full 6th edition, and the Worlds Together Worlds Apart, Companion Reader (W.W. Norton). In Summer 2020, she co-facilitated the SDSU Flexible Course Design Institute, which undertook the training of more than 1,000 SDSU faculty as they made the shift to online instruction in the face of COVID-19. She has also published on various pedagogical and digital history topics, including writing about witchcraft on wikipedia, tweeting on the backchannel of the large lecture, and digital humanities approaches to visualizing Roman History. 

Jenny Robb

Jenny Robb

Jenny Robb is Curator and Associate Professor of The Ohio State University Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, the largest academic research institution dedicated to cartoons and comics. Before coming to Ohio State in 2005, she served as Curator of the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco for 5 years. She holds masters degrees in History and Museum Studies from Syracuse University. Robb has curated numerous cartoon and comics exhibitions, including, most recently, Exploring Calvin and Hobbes and Dedini: The Art of Humor. She is the author of several comics-related articles including “Bill Blackbeard: the Collector Who Rescued the Comics” in the Journal of American Culture and “From the Periodical Archives: Winsor McCay, George Randolph Chester and the Tale of the Jungle Imps” published in American Periodicals: A Journal of History, Criticism, & Bibliography

Maryanne Rhett

Maryanne A. Rhett

Dr. Maryanne A. Rhett, Associate Professor of Middle Eastern and World History at Monmouth University, works on topics related to modern Middle Eastern and Islamic history at the intersections of popular culture, nationalism, and world history. Her teaching duties, too, reflect these interests. Some of her classes include Islamic history, Modern Middle Eastern history, Popular Culture and the Middle East, and the history of Militant Nationalism. Additionally, she teaches the Perspectives class: A Graphic World: World History and Sequential Art. Dr. Rhett is Secretary for the World History Association as well as the WHA’s program committee chairman. She has arranged programs for the Mid-Atlantic World History Association, the World History Association, and the Monmouth University Biennial Conference on Race. In 2019, Rhett authored Representations of Islam in United States Comics, 1880-1922. 

Angela Graham

Angela Graham is a Master’s in History student at SDSU. 

Luke Heine

Luke Heine

Luke Heine is a History Major at SDSU as well as a member of the Weber Honors College and Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society. 

A Visual Approach

A Visual Approach is a woman-founded firm specializing in graphic recording, group facilitation, and strategic illustration. A Visual Approach is co-directed by Hope Tyson and Jaclyn Gilstrap and is based in Durham, North Carolina.