Randall Maurice Jelks, associate professor of American studies and African and American American studies at the University of Kansas, won the 2013 Literary Award for Nonfiction from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. He was honored for his book, Benjamin Elijah Mays, Schoolmaster of the Movement: A Biography (University of North Carolina Press, 2012).
Dr. Jelks is co-editor of the journal American Studies. His previous book is African Americans in the Furniture City: The Struggle for Civil Rights in Grand Rapids (University of Illinois Press, 2006).
An ordained Presbyterian minister, Dr. Jelks is a graduate of the University of Michigan. He holds a master of divinity degree from the McCormick Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. in history from Michigan State University.