About Us

Executive Board

John Slifko

slifkoJohn holds a BA from San Francisco State in Geography, an MA in Urban Planning from UCLA and was awarded the Cotton-Beland Fellowship for Distinguished Work in Environmental Planning. He is currently finishing his Ph. D. at UCLA Geography. John’s varied career has included environmental planning for the Los Angeles City Council, and environmental technology issues for the United States Congress. John was listed in the Who’s Who Congressional Staff Directory for the United States Congress. He is Co-Director of the Roosevelt Center for the Study of Freemasonry and Civil Society, on the Board of Directors of project AWE, and similarly for the Hannah Mather Crocker Society, Notre Dame University. His major research interests are the development and origins of early American civil society, geographically-integrated history of Freemasonry, geographic place, democratic praxis and John Dewey.

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Click to view John Slifko’s CV


Mary Vázquez-Semadeni

Mary Vázquez-SemadeniProfessor Vazquez-Semadeni teaches Latin American History. Her specialties include Mexican political culture in nineteenth century and History of Freemasonry. Her current research, among other topics, examines the origins of Freemasonry in Mexico. This work is based on new evidence she has uncovered in the holdings of the Grand Lodge of Louisiana concerning lodges established in Veracruz (1816), Campeche (1817) and Merida (1820). She recently presented a paper on these findings at the Third International Conference on History of Freemasonry (Alexandria, VA, May 26th-29th, 2011) and she is working on an article that will be submitted soon. Vazquez-Semadeni is also carrying out a project regarding the public debate about Freemasonry in Mexico and the United States (1826-1840) and its implications in republican political culture.

Click to view Maru Vazquez’ CV

Advisory Board:
The Roosevelt Center Academic Advisory Board is an international network of experts who give the Roosevelt Center meaningful help on a regular basis. The Academic Advisory Board advises Leadership in its strategic decision-making process. At times the whole group is consulted, at other moments individual members are engaged. Biographies of current members of the Academic Advisory Board are found below.

Professor Andrew Prescott
School of Humanities, University of Glasgow

andrew-prescottAndrew has wide-ranging experience of work in libraries and archives and was one of the pioneers in the development of digital humanities in the UK. He was a Curator of Manuscripts at the British Library for twenty years, where he helped plan the move of the manuscript collections from the British Museum building to the new British Library at St Pancras. He was a chief curatorial contact for the British Library’s Initiatives for Access programme, one of the first large-scale digitisation programmes in the UK, and was an editor of the volume recording the work of this programme, Towards the Digital Library. Andrew was the lead British Library contact for the award-winning Electronic Beowulf project, edited by Professor Kevin Kiernan of the University of Kentucky, and was a member of the team which helped create the British Library’s first website.

Andrew moved from the British Library in 2000 to become a member of the management team of the Humanities Research Institute at the University of Sheffield, where he provided substantial support and advice on a number of major digital humanities projects. Andrew’s chief responsibility within the HRI was the development of the Centre for Research into Freemasonry, the first academic centre in a British university devoted to the study of the history of Freemasonry, a neglected area of British social history.

Following this, Andrew moved to become Pro Vice-Chancellor and Librarian of the University of Wales, where he actively promoted Lampeter’s remarkable collection of rare books and manuscripts, supervising their move into a new purpose-built repository. He has also taken a leading part in a number of Welsh collaborative projects, including the Welsh Repositories Network, and is currently Chair of Cadwyn y Canolbarth, the mid-Wales library partnership.

Andrew’s central research interest is the way in which the structure and development of libraries and archives has affected our perception and use of historical texts, and in particular how digital technologies are transforming our engagement with these texts. His pursuit of these themes has led him to research and write on a wide range of libraries and archives, from the records of the Peasants’ Revolt of 1381 to the Edwardian films of Mitchell and Kenyon.


Professor Cécile Révauger
English Studies, University of Bordeaux

Professor Cécile RévaugerCécile Révauger, agrégée and Docteur d’Etat, devoted her doctoral thesis (Ph.D.) to Freemasonry in Britain and the United States in the 18th century. She is currently a professor of English Studies at Bordeaux University. She obtained two Fulbright Awards in 1983 and 1999. She has published several articles on British and American freemasonry in academic journals and written five books:

  1. Le fait maçonnique en Grande-Bretagne et aux Etats-Unis au XVIIIe siècle (Paris, EDIMAF, 1990)
  2. La Querelle des Anciens et des Modernes. Le premier siècle de la franc-maçonnerie anglaise.(Paris, EDIMAF, 2000)
  3. Franc-Maçonnerie et Religions dans l’Europe des Lumières, (Paris, Editions Champion, 2000, in collaboration with Charles Porset)
  4. Noirs et francs-maçons (Paris, EDIMAF, 2003)
  5. The Abolition of Slavery. The British debate, 1787-1833, Paris, PUF, 2008

She is currently editing a dictionary of 18th century freemasons in the world, in collaboration with Charles Porset, CNRS, Paris-Sorbonne, Le Monde Maçonnique des Lumières, to be published at Champion Editions, Paris, which involves a team of over a hundred and fifty collaborators.

She has organized several international conferences on the history of freemasonry, 18th century society, slavery and abolition. She is a member of the editorial committee of the Journal for Research into Freemasonry and Fraternalism, of the organization committee of ICHF, and of the scientific committee of Musée d’Aquitaine, Bordeaux. You can read more on the blog.


Professor José Antonio Ferrer Benimeli
Professor Retired, University of Zaragoza
José Antonio Ferrer BenimeliJosé Antonio Ferrer Benimeli holds a Ph.D. in Philosophy and Letters, with his specialty in History. He was awarded Premio Extraordinario at the defense of his dissertation in 1972. He was a full professor of Contemporary History at University of Zaragoza (retired). The Professor was the first to hold the Cátedra Théodore Verhaegen at Free University of Brussels (1983, Belgium), under the auspices and authority of the Royal Academy of History. He specializes in the History of Freemasonry, particularly in Spain and Hispanic America. He was founder and president of the Center for Historical Studies on Spanish Freemasonry from 1983 to 2009. He is life-long President of Honor for the Center. During ten years he was Vice President of Center of Eighteenth Century Spanish Studies. This distinguished scholar has published more than five hundred scholarly papers, forty seven books, and coordinated, among others, the 24 volume series of collected papers of the twelve International Symposia on History of Spanish Freemasonry, held from1983 to 2009. He has participated in three hundred international conferences, taught summer courses at the premier Universidad Complutense of Madrid, and presented more than five hundred public talks across Europe and America. Professor Benimeli is member of the Scientific Committee of several European and American academic journals and he has been visiting professor in many Spanish and foreign universities.

Pierre-Yves Beaurepaire
Professor of Modern History at the University of Nice Sophia-Antipolis

John SlifkoPierre-Yves Beaurepaire is a Professor of Modern History at the University of Nice Sophia-Antipolis. To learn more, please check out his CV here.