October 21, 2019
Last week, I attended the Western History Association conference in Las Vegas, Nevada. At this year’s conference, the question framing the Presidential Plenary was, “Does the West matter?” To this, I say yes! The “West” as a region is the rallying call for the best minds in history to gather and present new ideas. And from my perspective from the book room, there was no shortage of dynamic research to be shared at what was the third largest gathering of western historians in the organization’s history.
In the spirit of inclusion and community— “so we can all be together,” in the words of outgoing WHA President Martha A. Sandweiss— this year marked a change in programming, an eschewing of the annual ticketed banquet and opening up the awards ceremony to all. Witnessing the torch-passing from Dr. Sandweiss to new WHA President and longtime University of Arizona Press series editor, David Wrobel, was a highpoint of the conference. Another highpoint: Watching UAP author Yvette Saavedra receive the 2019 WHA Hunting Library Martin Ridge Fellowship. Congratulations, David and Yvette!
This year, I had the honor of participating in Thursday morning’s panel on turning a dissertation into a book, organized and chaired by UAP author and series editor, Jeff Shepherd. The panel was fantastic! The room was packed, with a continuous flow of great questions from the audience. It was a joy to have conference-goers swing by the booth throughout the rest of the conference to continue the conversation.
Thank you to all who came to the University of Arizona Press booth this year to browse books and chat about your research. I look forward to seeing everyone in Albuquerque next year!
—Kristen Buckles, Editor in Chief