Ashley Brown

Position title: Assistant Professor & Allan H. Selig Chair in the History of Sport and Society


Phone: 608.263.1641

Office: 5105 Mosse Humanities
Mailbox: 5011 Mosse Humanities
Office Hours: Tuesdays 5:30 - 6:30, Thursdays 5:30 - 6:30 or by appointment (virtually)
Not Accepting Graduate Students for 2022-2023

Ashley Brown


I am a twentieth-century United States historian whose research and teaching focus on African American history, women’s history, and the history of sport. I believe that sport is intrinsic to American culture and history, carrying the potential to initiate critical discussions about race, gender, mass culture and media, and labor. I am particularly passionate about investigating the journeys of minority and female athletes in country club sports. Currently, I am writing my first book. “The Match of Her Life” a critical biography of the first African American to win titles at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open, between 1956 and 1958.


Ph.D., George Washington University
B.A., Mount Holyoke College

Selected Publications

  • The Match of Her Life” (Book In Progress).
  • “’Uncomplimentary Things’: Tennis Player Althea Gibson, Sexism, Homophobia, and Anti-Queerness in the Black Media,” Journal of African American History, 106.2 (Spring 2021): 249-277.
  • “Swinging for the State Department: American Women Tennis Players in Diplomatic Goodwill Tours, 1941-1959,” Journal of Sport History, 42.3 (Fall 2015): 289-309.

Selected Awards

  • Nellie McKay Fellowship, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2020-2021.
  • Fall Research Competition Award, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2020.
  • Visiting Fellowship for Post-Doctoral Scholars, James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference, Emory University, 2017-2018.
  • Research Associateship, Five College Women’s Studies Research Center, 2016-2017.
  • National Edward Alexander Bouchet Graduate Honor Society, 2016.
  • 30th Annual Graduate Student Essay Prize, North American Society for Sport History, 2015.
  • Presidential Merit Fellowship, George Washington University, 2010-2015.

History Courses