Mary Hill Cole


Dr. Mary Hill Cole

  • BA James Madison University (history)
  • MA, PhD University of Virginia (history)

Dr. Mary Hill Cole is professor of history and current chair of the history department. She received her PhD in English history at the University of Virginia. She teaches undergraduate courses in English history, modern European history, and women’s history. In the graduate MLitt/MFA Shakespeare in Performance program, she teaches courses in Tudor-Stuart political, religious, and social history. Her book, The Portable Queen: Elizabeth I and the Politics of Ceremony, was published by the University of Massachusetts Press in 1999. She has published articles on Elizabethan progresses in Douglas F. Rutledge, ed., “Ceremony and Text in the Renaissance” (University of Delaware Press,1996); Carole Levin, Jo Eldridge Carney and Debra Barrett-Graves, eds., “Elizabeth I: Always Her Own Free Woman” (Ashgate, 2003); and Jayne Elisabeth Archer, Elizabeth Goldring, and Sarah Knight, eds., “The Progresses, Pageants, and Entertainments of Queen Elizabeth I” (Oxford University Press, 2007). Her article, “Maternal Memory: Elizabeth Tudor’s Anne Boleyn” will appear in an anthology, “Elizabeth I and the ‘Sovereign Arts’: Essays in Literature, History, and Culture”, forthcoming in 2009. She also is the Mary Baldwin director of the Virginia Program at Oxford.

Katharine Franzen

Dr. Katharine M.G. Franzen

  • MA St. Andrews University, Scotland (English language and literature)
  • MA University of Virginia (European history)
  • PhD University of Virginia (British history)

Dr. Franzen is a part-time assistant professor of history, teaching European history courses on campus and in the Adult Degree Program. She also teaches Inquiry in the Social Sciences in the Master of Arts in Teaching Program at Mary Baldwin College. Her special interest is in modern British history, and her dissertation was on government assisted emigration from rural England during the nineteenth century. Dr. Franzen first came to the United States as the St. Andrews Exchange Scholar to the College of William and Mary. Her most recent interest is in oral history, particularly of World War II veterans and civilians. She has edited a series of memoirs by a U.S. combat veteran of World War II.

Dr. Franzen is passionate about classroom teaching and about opening her students’ eyes to the difference between knowing what happened and understanding why. She also seeks to find parallels in history, both recent and in the more distant past, which help us to recognize events and outcomes, with similarities and differences. Where possible and relevant, she tries to make history immediate to our everyday lives and decisions, and enjoys bringing outside speakers into the classroom.

Rick PotterRick Potter


  • BA College of William and Mary (history and fine arts)
  • MA University of Virginia (architectural history, preservation)
  • PhD Auburn University (history)

Edmund (Rick) Potter is an assistant professor of history for Mary Baldwin College. He teaches both for the Residential College and the Adult Degree Program. Dr. Potter’s areas of scholarly interest include the history of technology, architectural history, modern Europe, and America post 1865. His dissertation examined the role of World War I in shaping the social use of architecture in inter-war Birmingham, England. He is a member of the American Historical Association, the Society of the History of Technology, the Society of Architectural Historians, and Phi Alpha Theta. Dr. Potter began his career in preservation in 1983 with the restoration of the Lobby of the Joseph Nichols Tavern, built in 1815. Since then, he has worked for the Lynchburg Museum System, Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest, the National Park Service, and served for seven years as the Curator of Collections at the Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library. He has organized and participated in numerous restoration projects and co-written two National Register nominations.

Amy Tillerson-Brown


Amy Tilllerson

  • BA Virginia Tech (English)
  • MA Virginia Tech (student personnel services/counseling)
  • PhD Morgan State University (history)

Amy Tillerson is a native of Prince Edward County. For her dissertation, Tillerson-Brown researched the activism of Black women in Prince Edward County, Virginia between 1930 and 1965. Prince Edward County is most well known for the school crisis that closed public schools for five years. Before accepting her position at Mary Baldwin College, she was director of African American Heritage Program at the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities at UVA. She has taught in the history departments at University of Virginia, Virginia Tech, Morgan State, and Piedmont Virginia Community College. She has also been a public school teacher and counselor in Roanoke City Public Schools and Baltimore City Public Schools. She is the advisor to Phi Alpha Theta, the history honor society.