Pembroke Hall, Room 109
Damien Mahiet is Director of Academic Programs at the Cogut Institute and Lecturer in Humanities. He provides administrative support for the Collaborative Humanities Initiative and Doctoral Certificate as well as the institute’s communications and programs. His interests lie at the intersection of several disciplines, in the ways musical ideas and practices inform political thought and regimes in Europe and the United States. One particular focus of his research has been the diplomatic invention of the Concert of Nations. Trained in political thought (MA Sciences Po Paris) and musicology (PhD Cornell University), he was a fellow at Harvard University’s Mahindra Humanities Center in 2012–2013. His work has appeared in Eighteenth-Century Music, 19th-Century Music, Dance Research, History of European Ideas, and the Journal of International Political Theory. He co-edited L'Institution musicale (Delatour, 2011) and Music and Diplomacy from the Early Modern Era to the Present (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). He serves as a review editor of the H-Diplo network.
Gregory Kimbrell is the Communications Manager. Across a variety of channels, he promotes the institute’s initiatives and events and the accomplishments of its faculty, fellows, and students. For 11 years, he organized events and managed event space and publicity for Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Libraries. He completed his MFA in creative writing at VCU and has since published two books of poetry: The Primitive Observatory (Southern Illinois University Press, 2016) and The Ceremonial Armor of the Impostor (Weasel Press, 2019).
Ben Safran provides administrative support for the Institute’s academic fellowships and courses. They have a Ph.D. in music from Temple University and have presented research on protest music, campaign strategy, identity studies in music, music in childhood and youth culture, media studies, hermeneutics, ecomusicology, and 20th- and 21st-century concert music. Their scholarly work has been published in the Journal of the Society for American Music and Yale Journal of Music and Religion, while their compositions have been performed by musicians ranging from principal members of the Philadelphia Orchestra to grassroots activists performing a guerilla concert in a corporate headquarters lobby. They also serve on the board of environmental activist group Earth Quaker Action Team.
Rachel Ulm coordinates logistics and administrative support for in-person, virtual, and hybrid events as the Administrative and Event Coordinator for the Cogut Institute. Previously, she worked as a Community Ambassador at Colgate University and served on a public relations committee that helped to coordinate and advertise events for the Tredecim Honor Society. She has also worked with children and teenagers as a private cello teacher. She obtained her B.A. in geography and environmental studies at Colgate University. Her research focused on resource disparities within Indigenous populations, low-income neighborhoods, and communities of color with a particular focus on food insecurity and the viability of sustainable urban agriculture.