This year the HOTCUS elections are uncontested with one candidate for each position on the committee. Details of the candidates are available below

The new committee will be put to the membership for approval at the AGM at the annual conference, but in the meantime if any member wishes to raise any concerns they can contact the committee secretary Miguel Hernández at [email protected]

Chair: Dr Kaeten Mistry (University of East Anglia)

Amid turbulent times for higher education, the work of professional organisations is more vital than ever. I would like HOTCUS to remain a hub that supports members and fosters a wider sense of community that confronts the challenges to our disciplines and livelihoods. This involves building on previous achievements and, in response to the 2023 membership survey, renewing HOTCUS activities.

One of key tasks is to support HOTCUS members, especially postgraduate, early career and precariously employed colleagues. We will relaunch the mentorship scheme and continue to provide financial assistance for research activities. Another aim is to reconfigure events and communication that responds to the view of members as expressed in the survey and via Committee secretaries. This includes the format and objectives of HOTCUS initiatives. Finally, I would like the organisation to consolidate links with other historical organisations and build strong scholarly networks. Acting in collaboration and solidarity with others is vital in strategically communicating the value of our work beyond our field. I have been honoured to lead HOTCUS over the past year, having previously served as Vice Chair and Treasurer. I am Associate Professor of History at the University of East Anglia. My core objective as HOTCUS chair for the next year is to ensure the organisation best serves our community’s needs. This is essential as we confront crises of precarity, inclusion, and increasing workloads in the profession.

Vice Chair: Dr Katharina Rietzler (University of Sussex)

I’m a Senior Lecturer in History and American Studies at the University of Sussex, and have served as HOTCUS Vice Chair since 2023, after being a member for several years. As Vice Chair, I have supported the HOTCUS Chair and the Committee throughout the academic year, and, together with the Postgraduate and Early Career Secretaries, developed a new mentoring scheme which we will launch at the 2024 HOTCUS Conference. I would like to continue in the role to ensure the new scheme runs smoothly and enhances the research and career prospects of HOTCUS members. Moreover, I would like to build on steps we took this year to ensure closer relations with like-minded scholarly organisations, in the UK and abroad. I remain enthusiastic about serving HOTCUS and helping it fulfil its aims: to provide intellectual leadership, an inclusive community open to all and a forum for exchange.. 

Committee Secretary: Dr Miguel Hernández (Aberystwyth University)

Serving on the HOTCUS committee, first as Events Secretary and for the past two years as Committee Secretary, has proven to be a fulfilling and gratifying experience. HOTCUS remains the same welcoming group of helpful scholars that I first encountered when I attended my first annual conference, and I hope to keep serving on the committee to continue the work we do. History as a higher education discipline is in a fragile state; and the initiatives and events we develop are becoming increasingly important to support our members. Based on the survey undertaken last year, I have worked with the rest of the committee to respond to the needs of members with various initiatives that we will be unveiling soon. In addition, as Committee Secretary I have overseen the redesign of our logo and the redevelopment of our website. On the latter, there is still work to be done to ensure our website effectively serves our members and promotes HOTCUS to a wider audience. I hope to continue this work if elected, as well as working closely with our Membership Secretary to ensure that our comms are aligned and regularly updated.

Treasurer: Dr Zoe Hyman (University College London)

In continuing as treasurer at a time of ongoing financial uncertainty, my priorities remain as follows:

  • Ensuring that HOTCUS’s bank balance remains healthy so that we can continue to support the organisation’s conference and outreach activities.
  • Budget to ensure that HOTCUS can continue to support PGR, precariously employed, and ECR members of our community to carry out research, disseminate their work, and attend HOTCUS events.
  • Support committee and institutional conference organisers with budgeting and strategic planning.

Expand HOTCUS’s membership and fundraising strategy to help support the HOTCUS community, and grow the organisation’s impact on the US History community in the UK and beyond in the longer-term. 

Membership Secretary: Dr Elizabeth Ingleson (London School of Economics)

Community is at the heart of how I approach ideas and learning. To my mind, both are always stronger when they are developed as part of, and within, communities. I have spent the last 10 years studying and working in multiple countries—Australia, the United States, China, and now the UK—during which time I have only come to believe more in the importance of having shared spares to learn and discuss ideas. It is for this reason I am applying for the position of membership secretary, a role that directly engages with the HOTCUS community. If elected, I will use the position to continue and strengthen the connections within HOTCUS and help welcome new members to the organisation—just as I myself experienced when I first moved to the UK. Through the regular newsletter, I will continue to build a research and learning environment that is welcoming and diverse. One way in which I hope to do this would be by introducing “member spotlights” in the newsletter to showcase the research and interests of members, with a particular focus on early career members and those who are newer to the HOTCUS community. As a recent member myself, it would be a pleasure to take on a formal role within HOTCUS and give back to an organisation that has given so much already.

Events Secretary: Dr Megan Hunt (University of Edinburgh)

In the three years that I have been Events Secretary, I have overseen the the organisation and development of two fully hybrid annual conferences, and our 2024 in-person event at Southampton.
My intention in this role has been to ensure that our annual conference structure best serves the needs of our members, rather than outdated traditions, and I have introduced and/or formalised a range of approaches to conference organisation that better suit the needs of our members, including more attention to pedagogy, career development, and the PG workshop with our keynote speaker. I am grateful to this year’s keynote Prof. Randall Stephens for embracing this arrangement, and for our latest addition to the conference programme: the HOTCUS New Books panels, which this year have evolved further to place some Classic Books in Conversation too.
I am committed to an ongoing, evolving conference plan, which invites essential conversations on teaching, diversity, and our responsibilities to the wider community, alongside exciting research panels.
In recent years, HOTCUS has considerably expanded the remit of our conference, but its format remains open to change and innovation. I hope that HOTCUS members will continue to feed into that process with their input and ideas, and with offers to host future events!

Early Career Secretary: Dr Ellie Armon Azoulay (Newcastle University)

I am a cultural historian with an interdisciplinary background and experience that includes researching and teaching about and through music and visual culture. My work’s interdisciplinary nature was formed by my diverse career(s) and experiences, ranging from research, curatorial work, art criticism, and DJing. This diverse background shaped my pedagogy and my abilities to incorporate multiple approaches to knowledge production, research, education, and collaborative work. I am very keen to build on this experience with HOTCUS community and explore together how to expand the use of various sources and approaches in historical research.

I have served as a PG representative in my doctoral department of American Studies at Kent; I was elected as PG rep and a member of the British Association of American Studies (BAAS) executive committee for two years. In these roles and since joining HOTCUS as an ECR Rep, I have been actively initiating institutional, non-institutional and cross-institutional initiatives: organising workshops and webinars that centred on the needs of PG and ECR communities, such as work in the annual PG symposium, work in progress sessions, reading groups and workshops on the process of transforming the dissertation into a book manuscript. These opportunities strengthened the sense of community that my peers and I needed and enhanced the importance of solidarity.
As a foreigner, a woman, a non-English (native) speaker and an ECR with caring responsibilities, I’ve experienced (and continue to) different challenges that affect my material conditions, well-being, and opportunities. I’m especially committed to fighting and making more transparent the precarious and exploitative aspects that impact ECRs the most. Job insecurity and the constant job search can be stressful and isolating at times, and I’d like to work with HOTCUS to facilitate opportunities for solidarity and sharing knowledge and experience around these processes.

Postgraduate Secretary: Samantha Lanevi (University of Cambridge)

When I attended my first HOTCUS conference last year in Northumbria, I admit I was nervous as a first-time attendee and presenter but I immediately felt welcomed by the supportive community. I am self-nominating for the PG Secretary role because I want to give back to the HOTCUS community and I believe my experiences will add a unique perspective on the committee.
As an undergraduate, I served as sole student representative on the Committee on Curriculum and Academic Policy, and was a college representative for outside visiting committees. Prior to my graduate studies, I worked at an international auction house as their head of operations and finance, working with both international colleagues and clients. While at Cambridge, I am the American History Subject Group Postgraduate Representative and on the leadership committee for a university level sports team. I recently co-organized the Cambridge Graduate American History Conference and have participated in an array of conferences at Cambridge, Oxford, the Roosevelt Institute for American Studies, the Society for Military History, and will be presenting at Organization of American Historians in 2025.
Being a PGR can be an isolating and overwhelming experience, so I hope to continue the ECR/ECA workshops to demystify various aspects of academia. In addition to this, I hope to set up casual meet-ups, in-person and on Zoom, so PGR’s can get to know each other and have touchstones for future collaboration.
Throughout all of these experiences, I have learned the skills necessary to be a collaborative and productive committee member and hope bring a positive impact to the committee and HOTCUS as a whole.