Jim Grossman

Executive Director

Jim Grossman is executive director of the American Historical Association. From 1997–2010, he was vice president for research and education at the Newberry Library, while also teaching graduate courses at the University of Chicago. He received his PhD from the University of California, Berkeley, and has taught at the University of Chicago and the University of California, San Diego. He is the author of Land of Hope: Chicago, Black Southerners, and the Great Migration (Univ. of Chicago Press, 1989) and A Chance to Make Good: African Americans, 1900–1929 (Oxford Univ. Press, 1997). He was project director and co-editor of The Encyclopedia of Chicago (Univ. of Chicago Press, 2005 and online, 2006). Grossman also was the editor of The Frontier in American Culture (Univ. of California Press, 1994) and continues as co-editor of the series Historical Studies of Urban America (Univ. of Chicago Press, 40 vols., 1992- ). His articles and short essays have focused on various aspects of American urban history, African American history, American ethnicity, higher education, and the place of history in public culture. His book reviews have appeared in the Chicago Tribune and New York Newsday in addition to various academic journals.

Land of Hope received awards from the Gustavus Myers Center for Human Rights and the Illinois State Historical Society. A Chance to Make Good won awards from the New York Public Library and the National Council for the Social Studies. The Encyclopedia of Chicago won awards from the Scholarly Publishers Division of the Association of American Publishers and the Illinois State Historical Society. Grossman was chosen in 2005 as one of seven “Chicagoans of the Year” by Chicago Magazine.

Grossman’s consulting experience includes a broad variety of history-related projects generated by the BBC, Smithsonian, and various theater companies, filmmakers, museums, and libraries. Professional service has included elected offices in the American Historical Association and Organization of American Historians, ethics committees for the AHA and the OAH, and Advisory Boards for the Center for New Deal Studies at Roosevelt University, Illinois Historical Society, City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, and Chicago Public Library. He co-chaired the Program Committee for the annual meeting of the Organization of American Historians in 2005. Grossman currently serves on the boards of the American Association of Colleges and Universities, Center for Research Libraries, National Humanities Alliance (vice president), National History Center, Vivian G. Harsh Society, and the Coalition of Social Science Associations.