Kimberly Eison Simmons is currently an Associate Professor of Anthropology and African American Studies and an Associate Dean in the South Carolina Honors College at the University of South Carolina. She received her B.A. in Spanish from Grinnell College and her Ph.D. in Anthropology from Michigan State University where she was also a Researcher-in-Residence with the African Diaspora Research Program. Much of her research focuses on women’s organizations, Afro-Dominicanness, African American culture and experience, and the cultural construction of identity in the African Diaspora focusing on African Americans and Afro-Latinos/as. She is the author of Reconstructing Racial Identity and the African Past in the Dominican Republic (University Press of Florida, 2009) and co-editor of Afrodescendants, Identity, and the Struggle for Development in the Americas (Michigan State University Press, 2012). She is currently working on two book projects (an edited volume on African American culture and a single authored book on Afro- Dominicanness, identity, and the politics of natural hair). She is also past President of the Association of Black Anthropologists.