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Katha Kissman
Organization of American Historians

Last modified: Thursday, December 17, 2009

Katherine Finley named executive director of Organization of American Historians

Dec. 17, 2009

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The executive board of the Organization of American Historians, which has executive and editorial offices housed at Indiana University, has appointed Katherine "Kathy" Finley as the organization's new executive director.

Finley will begin March 1, 2010, in advance of the OAH annual meeting in Washington, D.C., April 7-10. Katha Kissman, OAH interim executive director, will serve in a transition capacity through the 2010 annual meeting.

Katherine Finley

Katherine Finley

Finley holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in history, an MBA, and a Ph.D. in interdisciplinary studies, and has worked for history museums and associations. In addition to her passion for history, she is also a certified and seasoned nonprofit executive.

Her experience and talents will be useful as the OAH works to achieve the goals adopted in the newest strategic plan, said Elaine Tyler May, OAH president and Regents Professor at the University of Minnesota.

"On behalf of the entire OAH executive board, I look forward to working with Kathy," May said. "I am confident that under the co-leadership of Kathy and Executive Editor Ed Linenthal, in combination with our dedicated staff, the OAH has a bright future ahead."

Finley arrives at OAH from her current position of executive director of the Real Estate Investment Securities Association and the TICA Foundation in Indianapolis. Previously, she was director of the American College of Sports Medicine Foundation and senior executive team leader for advancement, education and meetings for the American College of Sports Medicine; executive director of the Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) and associate faculty in Philanthropic Studies at IUPUI; and executive director of Roller Skating Association International and the Roller Skating Foundation.

Founded in 1907, the Organization of American Historians (OAH) is the largest professional society dedicated to the teaching and study of American history. Its work is supported primarily through the contributions of its membership, income from an annual conference each spring, and the support of Indiana University. For more information, see