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Gorham Resident Named USM Distinguished Professor of English

Kathleen M. Ashley of Gorham, professor of English at the University of Southern Maine, has been named USM’s fourth Distinguished Professor.  This appointment, among the highest accorded by the University, was awarded in recognition of Ashley’s exceptional scholarship and impact locally, nationally and internationally to her field of medieval studies. 

Ashley has consistently demonstrated exceptional scholarly work and leadership across a broad interdisciplinary range.  She is the author of many books including, “The Cults of Sainte Foy and the Cultural Work of Saints” (2007) and “Being a Pilgrim: Art and Ritual on the Medieval Routes to Santiago” (2009).  Ashley has edited or co-edited seven books, written 57 articles and 35 book reviews.  She has received numerous grants and awards, such as a Fulbright Senior Lectureship, four National Endowment for the Humanities grants and an Andrew Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship.

During her time at USM, she has received several research grants.  In 2005, she was awarded the Faculty Senate Award for Scholarship, and named a USM Trustee Professor in the 2000-2001 academic year.

Ashley works with the Maine Humanities Council, and has worked on a variety of projects providing professional development programs for K-12 teachers in Maine.  She received her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from Duke University, with a specialization in medieval literature.