Jon Butler, the Howard R. Lamar Professor Emeritus of American Studies, History, and Religious Studies at Yale University, began his term as the 2015-16 president of the Organization of American Historians (OAH) on April 18.
Outgoing 2014–15 OAH President Patty Limerick passed the ceremonial gavel to Butler after concluding the group’s annual business meeting last month in St. Louis.
Butler taught at Yale from 1985 to 2012, during which time he held positions including interim university librarian (2010–11), dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (2004–10), chair of the Department of History (1999–2004), and chair of the American Studies Program (1988–83).
Among others, his books include Awash in a Sea of Faith: Christianizing the American People, which earned the American Historical Association’s Beveridge Award for the best book in American history in 1990. He is also the author of Becoming America: The Revolution Before 1776, which was published in 2000.
Currently, Butler serves as an adjunct research professor of history at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. He is writing a book on religion in the late 19th and early 20th century Manhattan titled “God in Gotham.” He also serves as editor-in-chief of the “Oxford Research Encyclopedia in American History,” which is the first all-digital encyclopedia produced by Oxford University Press.
A member of OAH’s Distinguished Lectureship Program, Butler frequently lectures on the rise of religion in modern America and understanding America’s religious origins. He is a graduate of the University of Minnesota (BA ’64 and PhD ’72), where he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Science degree from the College of Liberal Arts in 2006.