Longtime history professor dies


Maria Brown, a history professor at EC, died Wednesday night. Brown was deeply involved in both Black History Month and Comic Book Day events. Here, in a photo taken last month, she stands next to her Wonder Woman Rolling Stone poster in her classroom. Photo credit: Amira Petrus

Updated: Nov. 26, 10:20 a.m. The Black Student Union and Engage Christian Club will host a candlelight vigil Dec. 3 at 5 p.m. on the Library Lawn in memory of Maria Brown. Those who plan to attend are asked to wear superhero or history related clothing. Candles will be provided.

Updated: Nov. 24, 6:55 p.m. Minor edits have been made to this story.

Maria Brown, a longtime history professor who was dedicated to campus events including those for Black History Month and Comic Book Day, died Wednesday night. She was 67.

Brown was planning to retire after this semester, her 40th year at EC, according to an email from Gloria Miranda, dean of behavioral and social sciences, sent Thursday.

Brown died of complications from a heart attack, according to the email.

Brown began working at EC in the ’70s teaching political science and history courses. During her time at EC, she was involved with Black History Month events and she also taught African American Literature and Women’s Studies.

“She was, first and foremost, an educator committed to student success,” Miranda said. “The division has been truly saddened by her passing.”

Miranda said one of her favorite memories of Brown was one that came during Brown’s first few years of teaching Women’s Studies.

“She had her students do projects that included these special dinner plates and they were all artistically designed by students,” Miranda said. “And the energy that came – that’s one of the important memories of her.”

Miranda said another favorite memory was when Brown organized a hat show during Women’s History Month.

“How she was able to get folks on campus to participate – she had an ability to do that,” Miranda said. “It’s the kind of programs that she put together that stick in my mind. They showcased her creative energies and talents.”

Miranda said although plans have not yet been finalized, the college will have a public memorial for Brown during next year’s Black History Month.

“I will definitely miss her,” Miranda said. “We already are.”