MACLAS Executive Committee

The MACLAS Constitution calls for an 11-member Executive Committee consisting of four officers (president, vice president, secretary, and treasurer); the immediately preceding ex-president; and six at-large members.  We are always looking for fresh blood and fresh ideas, so please be in touch if you might be interested in serving.

The 2016-2017 Executive Committee is constituted as follows:


President Michael J. Schroeder, Associate Professor of History, Lebanon Valley College.  A specialist in 20th century Nicaraguan history, especially the period of US military intervention in the 1920s & 30s, Mike teaches world history since 1500, focusing on the Atlantic world since the Age of Revolution.  He is author & administrator of the digital historical archive, co-author of a widely-used textbook on 20th century world history, and author of numerous articles & chapters in his areas of expertise (online vita here).


Vice President and President-Elect Bridget M. Chesterton, Associate Professor of History, State University of New York at Buffalo State.  A specialist in the history of Paraguay, Bridget is author of The Grandchildren of Solano López: Frontier and Nation in Paraguay 1904-1936 (2013), co-editor of Transformations of Populism in Europe, the United States and Latin America: Histories Theories and Recent Tendencies (2015), and author of a host of articles and chapters on the Chaco War and Paraguayan politics and culture (online vita here).


Secretary María Roof, Professor Emeritus of Spanish, Howard University.  For many years María taught undergraduate and graduate courses in Latin American literature and cultures, women's studies, and translation in the Department of World Languages and Cultures at Howard University.  Her publications analyze writings by Caribbean, Chilean and Central American authors.  For her bilingual book of poetry and interviews with Nicaraguan poet Vidaluz Meneses she was awarded the MACLAS 2015 Arthur P. Whitaker Prize.  Over the past decade she has presented her MACLAS colleagues with new research, especially on Central American poetry, and is especially proud to have mentored graduate and undergraduate students for paper presentations at each MACLAS meeting since 2003.


Treasurer Brian Turner, Professor of Political Science, Randolph-Macon College.  A specialist in 20th century Paraguayan and Latin American politics, Brian is author of Community Politics and Peasant-State Relations in Paraguay (1993) and a variety of articles on the politics and culture of Paraguay and Mexico.  Twice the recipient of the MACLAS Davis Prize (in 2003 and 2011), and President of MACLAS in 2005-2006, he has served as Treasurer since his presidency, and is universally considered the principal repository of MACLAS institutional memory.


Past President Meghan McInnis-Dominguez, Assistant Professor of Spanish, University of Delaware, earned her Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania where she completed her dissertation, "Diagnosing Empire: Refiguring Disease in the Early Modern Hispanic World."  Her research interests include medicine and literature in the early modern period, early modern Spanish novel, colonial Latin American historiography, Hispanic Transatlantic and Postcolonial Studies, and teaching with technology in the Hispanic Studies classroom.  She is also very active as a director of study abroad programs, leading winter and summer programs to Argentina, Mexico, and Spain.


Member Louise Detwiler (2017), Associate Professor of Spanish at Salisbury University.  Co-editor of Pushing the Boundaries of Latin American Testimony: Meta-morphoses and Migrations (with Janis Breckenridge, 2012), Louise has published numerous articles on twentieth-century Latin American and Latina writers.  Former recipient of the M/MLA Women's Caucus Distinguished Paper Award for her work on testimonio, her current research focuses on the representation of ecological and environmental voices within life writing.


Member Luis Roniger (2018), Wake Forest University.  The Reynolds Professor of Latin American Studies at Wake Forest, Luis has lived around the world and taught at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the University of Chicago, Carleton University in Ottawa, the Catholic University of El Salvador, the National Universities of La Plata and Cordoba in Argentina, and the University of Santiago de Compostela in Spain.  A comparative political sociologist, Dr. Roniger’s work focuses on the interface between politics, society and public culture.  On the international editorial board of several academic journals, he has published numerous journal articles and books on a wide range of topics including human rights, transitional politics, exile and democracy in Latin America.  In 2014, Luis was awarded both the MACLAS Whitaker Prize and the MACLAS Davis Prize.


Member Mirna Trauger (2018), Lecturer in Spanish, Muhlenberg College.  A full-time lecturer of Spanish in the department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures where she has been teaching all levels of Spanish for 13 years, Mirna's area of expertise is 20th century Hispanic Caribbean Literature. Her professional work includes scholarly publications as well as presentations at national and international literary and teaching conferences. Her most recent publication is, “El cuerpo y su conceptualización posmoderna en Pájaros de la playa de Severo Sarduy” (Latin American Essays, 2011). Her current research focuses on the representation of illness and disability in contemporary Latin American literature.  In 2012 she was awarded the MACLAS James Street Prize for best article published in Latin American Essays by a MACLAS member.


Member Gerardo T. Cummings (2018), Assistant Professor of Spanish, SUNY Onondaga Community College.  Gerardo's diverse interests range from Hispanic culture and magical literature to historical figures such as Emiliano Zapata to Mexican horror and Hispanic films.  Drawn to the cultural production of all Spanish-speaking countries, he has particular interests in Mexico.  Author of a book on a small rural community in Mexico (Recuento historiográfico del Comisariado de Bienes Comunales y Consejo de Vigilancia de Huitzilac, Morelos: Trienio 2007-2010 (Cuernavaca, Mexico: Ediciones Zetina & Comisariado de Bienes Comunales de Huitzilac, 2010), his ongoing projects include studies of Luis Buñuel, Guillermo del Toro, and Mexican horror films.  An avid creative writer and a poet, he hopes to soon publish his book of poetry.


Member Silvia M. Peart (2019), Associate Professor for Languages & Cultures, United States Naval Academy.  Silvia received her Ph.D. in Spanish/Second Language Acquisition from Texas Tech University. Her research interest include learners’ cognitive progression when reading in an L2, as well as gender variables within this process; intercultural competence; and identity construction in the literary production of heritage language learners. She has published eight articles and four book chapters in leading journals and edited volumes in her field, and presented her research at national and international conferences.


Member James F. Siekmeier (2019), Associate Professor of History, West Virginia University.  A specialist in US diplomatic history and US-Latin American relations, Jim has published widely on a diverse array of topics ranging across the hemisphere, including his 2011 book, The Bolivian Revolution and the United States, 1952 to the Present (University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press).  His current research investigates the intersection of globalization and Latin American nationalism.