2021 AFS Candidates
This year, AFS members will vote for three seats on the Executive Board and one seat on the Nominating Committee, all for a three-year, 2022–2024 term. Those elected will take office on January 1, 2022.
Each of the candidates put forward by the AFS Nominating Committee (Lisa Rathje, chair, with members Luisa Del Giudice, Anika Wilson, and Sarah Gordon) has provided a summary professional biography and statement, which you can find below.
Secure online voting will begin mid-November and will continue through December 15. When the election opens, you will find the ballot here. We’ll send word of the final election results to all AFS members by early January 2022.
A virtual Candidates’ Forum was held on November 11, 2021. View the video below.
Executive Board Candidates
Karen “Queen Nur” Abdul-Malik
Queen Nur is an award-winning international storyteller, independent folklorist and teaching artist. For 29 years, she has enthralled thousands in more than 36 U.S. states, West Africa, and Canada.
Julián Antonio Carrillo
Julián Antonio Carrillo has more than a decade of experience working with different organizations and diverse populations as an anthropologist, folklorist, and community development consultant.
Part of the Sámi American community, Tim Frandy is a public folklorist and an Assistant Professor of Folk Studies at Western Kentucky University, whose work centers on Indigenous communities, decolonization, education, and environments.
Benjamin Gatling is an Associate Professor in the English Department at George Mason University, Director of the Folklore Program, and Director of the Interdisciplinary Studies Program in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Semontee Mitra is a Lecturer of English and American Studies at the Pennsylvania State University, Harrisburg, where she received her Ph.D. She is an Associate Editor of Cultural Analysis, an interdisciplinary journal investigating expressive and everyday culture.
Meltem Türköz's career has included teaching, work in the public sector and journalism. She has a longstanding interest in peace education, and in arts-based community engagement.
Nominating Committee Candidates
Mark Y. Miyake
Mark Y. Miyake currently teaches and advises students at Fairhaven College of Interdisciplinary Studies at Western Washington University in his capacity as Assistant Professor of Music and Society and directs their program in Audio Technology, Music, and Society.
Guha Shankar is Folklife Specialist in the American Folklife Center, Library of Congress. He serves as project coordinator of Ancestral Voices, a collaborative curatorial initiative with indigenous communities and co-directs the national Civil Rights History Project.