Joshua Mather


Joshua Hideo Mather is a historian of the 20th World, African American History, and Health Politics in Modern Africa. Josh's dissertation, "Citizens of Compassion: Relief, Development, and State-Private Cooperation in U.S. Foreign Relations, 1939-1973," traces how, why, and to what effect the federal government and private voluntary organizations (PVOs) partnered together to fight overseas hunger, disease, and poverty. Tracing these developments between World War II and the passage of the 1973 Foreign Assistance Act, this project shows how federal officials and PVO leaders fashioned a policy framework and public discourse of "state-private humanitarianism" aimed at stabilizing the world and cementing America's status as a global leader. In the process, by leveraging elements of cultural, religious, intellectual, and diplomatic history, this dissertation seeks to show how the United States' transformation into a superpower hinged not only on economic and military might, but also on a heightened sense of national responsibility for foreigners deemed as being in crisis.

Josh has presented portions of his research at the annual meetings of the Journal of Policy History and the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR), as well as graduate student conferences at the University of Colorado, Vanderbilt University, and Saint Louis University. Additionally, he has served as the panel organizer for conference sessions accepted by SHAFR (2014) and the Organization of American Historians (2015).

Josh entered the graduate program at Saint Louis University in 2009, earning his M.A. in 2011and advancing to Ph.D. candidacy in January 2013. His dissertation research and writing has been funded by grants and fellowships from the Harry S. Truman Library Institute, Dwight D. Eisenhower Foundation, Lyndon Baines Johnson Foundation, and Saint Louis University Office of Graduate Education. In addition to holding teaching and research assistantships in the Department of History from 2009 to 2014, Josh has received research and conference travel grants from the department's 1818 Fund and John F. Bannon, S.J. Endowment. In 2012, Josh was also the recipient of the department's José M. Sanchez Distinguished Teaching Award.

Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, Josh graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in History from Covenant College in 2006. He has post-undergraduate professional experience in the legal industry, higher education administration, and a corporate communications office in the Department of Defense. In his spare time, he enjoys soccer, swimming, and St. Louis Cardinals baseball.

Higher purpose. Greater good.
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