Mary Rolinson is an Atlanta native and a Senior Lecturer in the Georgia State University Department of History where she has taught since 2005. Her expertise is in African American history, twentieth century US history, and Georgia history. Courses she teaches include A Survey of US History, Georgia History, Introduction to African and African American History, Twentieth Century US History, World History to 1500, Black Nationalism, the Harlem Renaissance, and African Americans and Africa. Her first book, Grassroots Garveyism: The Universal Negro Improvement Association in the Rural South, was published by the University of North Carolina Press in 2007 as part of the John Hope Franklin series in African American History and Culture. Her current book project is a biography of Mabel Murphy Smythe (1914-2006), a southern born African American academic who was an Africa expert, a pioneer of multi-cultural education, and a US Ambassador to Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea during the Carter Administration. Rolinson also continues to study the post-1940 Garvey Movement through close exploration of the Thomas Watson Harvey Papers (UNIA Collection).
Rolinson is also a teaching mentor, a fellow at GSU’s Center for Instructional Innovation, and the adviser to GSU’s chapter of Phi Alpha Theta, the national history honor society.