In Honor of Educator Susan E. Noffke
Robert Wickesberg made a donation to Teaching for Change in honor of his wife, educator and activist Dr. Susan E. Noffke. Noffke died after a long battle with cancer on June 1, 2013. She had been an incredible educator and generous supporter of Teaching for Change for many years.
As noted in on the University of Illinois memorial page for her:
Susan Noffke’s scholarship focused on Action Research from historical and conceptual lenses. She aimed to understand the emergence of Action Research internationally as a “family” of practices that challenged existing forms of knowledge. Noffke was deeply committed to issues of anti-racist education and economic and social justice. These commitments were a strong and consistent theme in her work, especially in terms of understanding how issues related to ethics and the political economy of grassroots knowledge production play out when the agenda of the research is explicitly one of challenging oppression and building stronger communities for change.
As Noffke herself explained in The SAGE Handbook of Educational Action Research that she co-authored with Bridget Somekh: “the core of action research lies in the term itself. Whether addressed in terms of the action-research relationship, in terms of theory and practice, or in terms of the blurred lines between research and advocacy, the dual agenda of interrogating the meanings of democracy and social justice at the same time as we act to alter the social situation shapes the potential of action research.”
Susan Noffke will be greatly missed. We will strive to continue and honor her legacy.