Dr. Williams's interest in family history and genealogy evolved into a passion for historic preservation within her maternal ancestral communities of Boromville, Creek Stand and Warrior Stand, Alabama. Her preservation activities include nominating the Creek Stand AME Zion Church cemetery to the Alabama Historical Commission's historic cemetery register, spearheading a donor campaign to purchase and erect a historic cemetery marker at the site, and writing the grant proposal that launched The Ridge Project. Dr. Williams is a 2012 National Trust for Historic Preservation Diversity Scholar. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism from Bowling Green State University, a Master of Public Administration degree from the University of Memphis, and a Ph.D. in History from Auburn University.
Dana Chandler is a trained archivist and historian, receiving his graduate degree from Auburn University. He works as the University Archivist/Associate Professor at Tuskegee University and is the co-author of To Raise Up the Man Farthest Down: Tuskegee University's Advancements in Human Health, 1881-1987 (University of Alabama Press, 2018). He has had over seventy presentations at a variety of venues and teaches history in the Department of History and Political Science. He specializes in the history of Tuskegee University. He is Head Archaeologist for The Ridge Project. In July 2016, the Central States Archaeological Journal published his article Initial Report on the Investigation of “The Ridge Site” Warrior Stand, Alabama.
Pastor Love is an ordained Elder of the AME Zion Church, minister, former pastor of the Creek Stand AME Zion Church, and current pastor of St. John AME Zion Church in Tuskegee. She has provided ongoing support of historic preservation efforts in the community. Pastor Love is a May 2013 graduate of Hood Theological Seminary, North Carolina where she earned a Master of Divinity degree. She obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Auburn University at Montgomery (AUM). Pastor Love is a member of the Macon County Ministerial Council, a strong advocate for children, her community, and the historic City of Tuskegee. She is a visionary leader who believes that Love conquers all.
Mr. Neil is a 25-year professional history in the Arts, Public Works, Public Design, and Community Engagement. He currently resides in Auburn, Alabama. Mr. Neil is the former Curator of the Troy University Rosa Parks Museum. In this role, he was responsible for curatorial and interpretive content development, exhibition design and implementation. He is a professional artist, exhibition designer, builder and community volunteer with years of experience in building small-scale community architecture and events, as well as in arts education. He works in multiple media including, painting, printmaking, photography, videography, metal sculpture, and full-scale landscape and architectural constructions. His work has been exhibited across the state of Alabama and internationally. Mr. Neil is a Co-Director of the Mobile Studio.
Cedric G. Sanders is a descendant of ancestors from Creek Stand in south Macon County, Alabama. He is an Instructional Designer in the University of Georgia’s Finance and Administration Department. Dr. Sanders’ research focus is African American men’s experiences in obtaining graduate level academic degrees in higher education. His dissertation, Counternarratives of African American Male Doctoral Students at Predominantly White Institutions, highlights the significance of this work and the need for intentional mentorship support, and meaningful interventions to increase the enrollment of African American men in higher education. He obtained his Ph.D. in Learning, Leadership, and Organizational Development with an emphasis on adult education from the University of Georgia. Dr. Sanders is a former police officer and throughout his twelve-year career, he served at Georgia State University and The City of Stone Mountain, promoting community policing and finally serving as a School Resource Officer in the Dekalb County School System. During his career, his passion and focus has always been to encourage other black men to thrive and to promote social justice. He is also the founder of a men’s group called Brother’s Keepers where he has created a safe place for black men to engage in conversations and lead them on a journey of discovering and understanding their power. In addition to a doctoral degree, Dr. Sanders holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a Master of Science in Adult Education Instructional Technology from Troy University.
Ms. Thompson is an educator, curriculum and cross-curriculum development specialist, and former teacher with the Lee County, Alabama School system. She is the founder of Trellis Learning at the Studio, which offers K-12 students a workspace that is designed to accommodate pandemic social distancing recommendations. Ms. Thompson serves Trellis Learning as Director and lead Teacher. Along with her staff, Ms. Thompson assists students with organizing and completing their school assignments in a calm environment that fosters connection with the outdoors, peer-group learning, and safe social interaction. Ms. Thompson holds a Bachelor of Education degree from Auburn University and a Master of Education degree from the University of West Georgia.
Ms. Zanzot is a landscape architect, artist, and teacher originally from San Francisco. She currently resides in Auburn, Alabama. She earned her Bachelor and Master of Landscape Architecture from the University of Oregon in 2003. Her Bachelor of Studio Arts is from Reed College with an emphasis in public art. She has worked professionally in both urban design offices and design build firms from the west coast to the deep south. She currently serves as the Urban Design Planner for the City of Montgomery. She occasionally teaches studios in the Auburn University Community Planning Program that explore design as a resourceful and imaginative choreography in collaboration with diverse communities towards civic health. Ms. Zanzot is a Co-Director of the Mobile Studio.
The Ridge Board of Directors is dedicated to
telling the stories of indigenous Native Americans and the free and enslaved pioneer settlers and travelers on the Old Federal Road into the Alabama frontier during the 1800s, highlighting the transformations of the area from then until now. In 2021, The Ridge Board is celebrating ten years of fulfilling our mission.