Speakers & Session Leaders

Below is information about all the talented speakers who are presenting at this event and those who are leading our interactive session. They each have an amazing topic that you will be excited to hear!

Dr. LaToya Eaves| she/her
LGBTQ+ Social Movements in/of the 1960s
LaToya  was born and raised in Shelby, North Carolina. She is a professor at MTSU and teaches courses in geography, global studies, gender & sexualities, and Africana studies. Her research examines the intersections of politics, social movements, faith, and queer people in the United States South and the broader Atlantic World. She was recently a co-organizer of the inaugural Queer Leadership Summit for Theta Nu Xi Multicultural Sorority, Inc., of which she is an active member.


Dr. Roberta Chevrette | she/her

Out of the Closets and Into the Streets: ACT UP, Queer Nation, and

LGBTQ In/Visibility

     This presentation focuses on queer counterpublic activism in the US in the 1990s.

Examining the communication strategies of ACT UP (The AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power)

and Queer Nation offers insights into how LGBTQ activists sought to make non-normative

sexualities visible, and how this has shaped contemporary landscapes of rights and social justice. 

These movements utilized confrontational and controversial protest tactics to challenge the status of sexuality as a private and closeted matter, a different position than that taken by more assimilationalist gay rights movements of the past. Through strategies such as "Die Ins" and "Kiss Ins," ACT UP and Queer Nation "bashed back" against the homophobia of government institutions and challenged the presumed heterosexuality of public spaces. These protest strategies have had long lasting impacts, influencing LGBTQ medical and social rights, shaping subsequent activist movements, and contributing to the academic study of queer theory.

     Roberta Chevrette is an assistant professor of Communication Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies faculty member at Middle Tennessee State University, where she specializes in the areas of rhetoric, intercultural communication and critical-cultural studies, and gender studies. Her research focuses on processes of belonging and exclusion, examining how ideologies of race, gender, sexuality, culture, and empire impact national identities, global relationships, and social movements. Her interdisciplinary scholarship has been published in journals including Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, Communication Theory, Feminist Formations, and Frontiers: A Journal of Women’s Studies. She also has a chapter on decolonizing rhetorical fieldwork in the edited volume, Text + Field: Innovations in Rhetorical Method. Chevrette is the Chair of the Rhetoric and Public Address Interest Group of the Western States Communication Association.

Roberta Nelson | they/them

Diverse Lesbian Identities of the 1920s

     Roberta holds a Masters in Theological Studies, with a focus in Religion, Ethics, and Politics from Harvard Divinity School. Roberta also earned a BA in Religion and History from the University of Rochester. Their academic interests lay in the development of American religious identity constructions at the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality. Roberta also has a passion for campus and community programming that engages these points of intersection.

Session Leaders

Maya Krause | she/her
Erasure and Bias in Archaeology

     Maya B. Krause is an anthropological bioarchaeological graduate student who explores how different groups react to and cope violence in ancient Peru. She frames her research to include not only interpersonal violence, but structural violence as well. This framing requires further interrogating imperialism and state-mandated policies. Furthermore, she hopes to further understand how trauma and specific kinds of culturally mediated violence can inform questions about changing sociopolitical organization. She analyzes human skeletal remains from archaeologically contexts in order to answer these questions. Maya’s research interests explore multiple sources of information, which include skeletal infection and chronic stress, diet, bone/tooth isotopic chemistry, and evidence of violent conflict. Finally, she is very excited to work on such an important project, with such a passionate student such as Terrance Loewl.

Anjeli Chapman | she/her
Erasure and Bias in Archaeology

     Anjeli Chapman is a senior at Vanderbilt, originally from New York City. She is majoring in Honors Medicine, Health, and Society and her thesis will discuss the neurological symptoms of post-partum depression. Anjeli’s favorite place to be is Northern California, where she enjoys camping and hiking.