Florida A&M University (FAMU) Professor David H. Jackson, Jr., Ph.D., was recently honored with the American Historical Association’s (AHA) 2013 Equity Award. The AHA, established in 1884, is the oldest and largest professional historical association in the nation.
Jackson received the award during the organization’s annual meeting held in January in Washington, D.C. The award is one of the association’s most distinguished scholarly and professional awards, and serves to honor individuals or institutions that have achieved excellence in recruiting and retaining underrepresented racial and ethnic groups in the historical profession.
In an announcement about the award, the organization recognized Jackson for his achievements in “inspiring African-American undergraduates to enter graduate programs in history and earn professional degrees,” and applauded him for being an “outstanding community leader and teacher.”
According to Jackson, although the award was presented to him as an individual, the honor represents the success of the unified efforts of FAMU faculty and administrators to mold future historians and history educators.
“It is a great honor to be recognized by our nation’s largest professional historical association for the work we have done to motivate and encourage our students to earn the doctorate in history, and work as historians to present a more accurate view of our history,” said Jackson, a professor of history and the chairman of the Department of History, Political Science, Public Administration, Geography and African American Studies.
Reginald Ellis, Ph.D., has known Jackson for more than 10 years, as a professor, mentor, and now as a colleague. Ellis, along with other colleagues, nominated Jackson for the award.
While a student at FAMU, Ellis said that Jackson piqued his interest in history with his dynamic lectures and keen ability to make each subject relevant for his students.
“His desire to create an active learning environment was one of the chief reasons that, as a freshman, I changed my major from physical therapy to African-American Studies,” said Ellis, an assistant professor of history at FAMU. “Taking every class that Dr.Jackson offered, I often found myself in his office after class sessions probing him to gain a deeper understanding of historical debates. Never once did he shun me. To the contrary, he often engaged me for hours after class discussions, and directed me to a number of secondary sources that would help my maturation process.”
A native of Atlanta, Jackson received his bachelor’s degree in history education and a master’s degree in public administration from FAMU. He earned his doctorate in history at the University of Memphis in Memphis, Tenn. in 1997 and began his professorial career at FAMU that same year.
He has made a number of research accomplishments since joining the FAMU faculty in the fall of 1997. Jackson has published more than four-dozen scholarly articles, book chapters, short essays and book reviews. He has also published five scholarly books with academic presses and has presented more than 100 scholarly papers and speeches throughout the United States.
Jackson was named the FAMU “Teacher of the Year” in 2000 and 2010, and received the FAMU Research Excellence Award in 2010. In April 2011, he was enshrined into FAMU’s College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities Gallery of Distinction.
He served on the Florida National Register Review Board from 2000-2003 and the Florida Historical Commission from 2002-2003. Currently, Jackson serves as a member of the University Press of Florida Advisory Board, chairman of the board for the John G. Riley Center Museum of African American History and Culture and as president of the Southern Conference on African American Studies, Inc.