Dr. Veronica L. Womack has spent nearly 20 years in higher education as a political scientist, rural researcher and Black Belt farmer’s lobbyist. She currently serves as chief diversity officer and professor of political science and public administration at Georgia College & State University in Milledgeville. Focusing her work on the underdeveloped rural South, Womack has brought local to global attention to underserved communities while also bringing inclusive excellence to the classroom.
She constantly connects her academic research and coursework to several community-university-governmental initiatives in the Black Belt Region of the American South. Today, she concentrates most of her work on issues within the Black Belt Region, including agricultural and farm bill policy with a deep-rooted interest in regional poverty and rural economic development. Her research is such a significant, riveting topic, it has garnered an international audience with a working group of experts at the United Nations; published in the Harvard Journal of African-American Public Policy; and secured federal funding for further examination of public policy in the rural South.
Womack joined the faculty of Georgia College’s Department of Government and Sociology in the fall of 2002. She became coordinator of the university’s Master of Public Administration program and taught both undergraduate and graduate students. She currently works within university administration and serves as full professor of political science and public administration. She earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations, master’s degree in public administration and doctorate in political science from the University of Alabama.
During 2013, she published her first scholarly book, “Abandonment in Dixie: Underdevelopment in the Black Belt,” to shed light about race relations in the South and solutions to moving America’s rural South forward. Published by Mercer University Press, the publication became a “Georgia Author of the Year” awards nominee that same year by the Georgia Writers Association (GWA). Womack’s detailed account of underrepresented people of the Black Belt and governmental pitfalls in place to prevent progress garnered statewide recognition from GWA’s literary community.
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“I know some parts of the book are a pretty raw read, but I think it’s important for us not to run away from what has happened.” — Dr. Veronica Womack