National Council of Teachers of English Logo

Promising Researcher Award Recipient

2016 Promising Researcher Award Winner

The Promising Researcher Award selection committee congratulates Tamara Butler and Christian Ehret for being selected as this year's Promising Researcher Award recipients. Submitted manuscripts were evaluated based on their statements of research problems, reviews of relevant literature, methodology and data analysis, grounding of evidence, significance of results, and clarity and style.

This year’s committee had the difficult task of selecting two recipients. Serving on the selection committee this year were Keisha L. Green (Chair), April Baker-Bell, Jevon D. Hunter, and Ramon Antonio Martinez.


They describe their work as follows:

Tamara Butler, "'We Need a Song': Sustaining Critical Youth Organizing Literacies through World Humanities"

Tamara Butler is an assistant professor of English education in the Department of English (and the African American and African Studies Program) at Michigan State University. She received her Ph.D. in Education (Multicultural and Equity Studies in Education) from The Ohio State University in 2014. Through her work with summer enrichment programs and community engagement projects, Dr. Butler worked closely with dedicated educators and high school students in Columbus, Ohio--for all of whom she is deeply grateful. In an effort to expand the boundaries of activism to include youth critical literacies work within the classroom, her research highlights the work of four female high school students of color as they bring attention to human sex trafficking. Working at the intersections of critical literacies, culturally-sustaining education, and Ethnic Studies, Dr. Butler explores how art, storytelling, and other creative processes can create spaces for youth, community members and educators to collectively engage in mobilizing and consciousness-raising efforts. As a native of the South Carolina Sea Islands, Dr. Butler is currently working with members of Sea Island communities on a project that is interested in the connections between land, teaching, storytelling, and activism.

Christian Ehret, "Moments of Literacy Teaching and Learning in a Children's Hospital: Affects, Textures and Temporalities"

Christian Ehret is an assistant professor in the department of Integrated Studies in Education at McGill University in Montréal, Québec. Dr. Ehret taught high school English in Athens, GA before completing his Ph.D. in Learning, Teaching and Diversity at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. His research desires to know and express more of our affective lives together, especially as they emerge in processes of making, reading, writing, and calling to action. This work has included anthropological engagements alongside youth in middle schools and high schools, and also in children’s hospitals and other informal learning environments. Across projects, Dr. Ehret has been, and continues to be, most interested in building a more moving empiricism for knowing and expressing how affective dimensions of social life produce ethical charges for more just modes of being in the present.

Apply for the 2017 Award

Past PRA Recipients

Complete Listing of Past Recipients

Logan Manning, University of Texas, San Antonio, "Rewriting Struggles as Strength: Young Adult Reflections on the Significance of their High School Poetry Community"

Rebecca Lorimer Leonard, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, "Traveling Literacies: Multilingual Writing on the Move"

Gholnecsar Muhammad, Georgia State University, Atlanta, "In Search for a Full vision: Writing Representations of African American Adolescent Girls"

Amy Stornaiuolo, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, ‘Like two different worlds’: Teachers’ perspectives on social networking and schooling,”

Tisha Y. Lewis, Georgia State University, Atlanta, "We txt 2 sty cnnectd: Digital literacies, Meaning-Making, and Activity Theory Systems between an African American mother and son."

Honorable Mention: Ebony Elizabeth Thomas, Wayne State University, Detroit, "Sustaining Culturally Responsive Discourse in Black and White: Negotiating Social Solidarities Through English Teacher Talk."

Jennifer Buehler, St. Louis University, "'We Have a Culture of Failure Here": Analyzing the Production of School Culture in an Urban High School."

Honorable Mention: Marie H. Romanelli, "Exploring the Culture and Cognition of Outsider Literacy Practices in Adult Readers of Graphic Novels"

Document and Site Resources

Share This On:

Page Tools:


Copyright © 1998-2017 National Council of Teachers of English. All rights reserved in all media.

1111 W. Kenyon Road, Urbana, Illinois 61801-1096 Phone: 217-328-3870 or 877-369-6283

Looking for information? Browse our FAQs, tour our sitemap and store sitemap, or contact NCTE

Read our Privacy Policy NEW! Statement and Links Policy. Use of this site signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use

Visit us on:
Facebook Twitter Linked In Pinterest Instagram