Seventh generation Texan, Andrea Roberts is an Assistant Professor of Urban Planning, Faculty Fellow of the Center for Heritage Conservation (https://chc.arch.tamu.edu/ ) as well as the Institute for Sustainable Communities (http://ifsc.tamu.edu/) at Texas A &M University (http://directory.arch.tamu.edu/people/57087 ). She teaches Planning History and Theory, Critical Place Studies, Preservation as Social Justice, and Neighborhood Revitalization. She is also the founder of The Texas Freedom Colonies Project (https://www.facebook.com/TheTexasFreedomColoniesProject/ ).
Calling herself an activist scholar, she examines place preservation and planning within African American communities through the lens of Critical Race Theory, Black Geographies, Black Feminism, and Performance Theory. She has written about social justice, intersectionality, and historic preservation for the National Trust, rural Black women’s contributions to placemaking in The Journal of Planning History, and the role of performance and storytelling among grassroots preservationists in Deep East Texas for the Journal of Archaeology and Community Heritage (https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Andrea_Roberts9 ).
Current projects include a book about Black historic preservation practice as a form of resistance and a statewide Black settlement inventory and digital humanities project call the Texas Freedom Colonies Atlas. The Atlas will make disappearing historic Black settlements visible to policymakers and enable the global diaspora of freedom colony descendants to share data, organize, and co-research with scholars. From 2016-17, Andrea was an Emerging Scholar Fellow at the University of Texas (UT) at Austin School of Architecture. She holds a Ph.D. in Community and Regional Planning with a specialization in historic preservation and African Diaspora studies from The University of Texas at Austin (UT), an MA in Government Administration from the University of Pennsylvania (2006), and a BA in Political Science from Vassar College (1996). She brings to her scholarship 12 years’ experience in grassroots journalism, political activism, community and economic development, and government administration in Houston and Philadelphia.