Mary Kay Quinlan


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Lincoln, Neb. native Mary Kay Quinlan, Ph.D., is a 1972 graduate of the University of Nebraska journalism college. At UNL she was a member of Phi Beta Kappa and Mortar Board and was active in various other campus organizations. She earned a master’s degree in journalism at the University of Maryland in 1973 and spent a year as a suburban schools reporter at the Rochester, N.Y., Democrat and Chronicle. In November 1974 she went to work for the Omaha World-Herald Washington Bureau, where she worked for more than 10 years. From 1985 to 1989 she was a regional correspondent for Gannett News Service in Washington, writing for Midwestern newspapers. In 1986 Quinlan served as president of the National Press Club and was elected to the Gridiron Club of Washington. In the 1980s Quinlan returned to school part-time and in 1992 earned a Ph.D. in the American studies program at the University of Maryland. She taught graduate and undergraduate classes at the University of Maryland College of Journalism where she was a Baltimore Sun Distinguished Lecturer and William Randolph Hearst Visiting Professional. Quinlan and her family returned to Lincoln in 1996. She has taught reporting and writing courses at UNL since 1999. Quinlan also is editor of the Oral History Association Newsletter, a thrice-yearly publication of the national professional organization of oral historians. She is also a co-author of “The Oral History Manual,” “Native American Veterans Oral History Manual” and “The People Who Made It Work: A Centennial Oral History of the Cushman Motor Works.” Quinlan has presented oral history workshops at numerous local, regional and national conferences.

Immigration in Nebraska