HomeProject InformationProject Team

Project Team

Permanent Staff

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Beverley Park Rilett

Beverley Park Rilett: editor and inaugural director, is an Associate Research Professor and Digital Humanities Coordinator at Auburn University in Alabama, home of the George Eliot Archive and its sister projects, the George Eliot Review Online and George Eliot Scholars since 2021.

Previously, she was an Assistant Research Professor in English and a Faculty Fellow at the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where these projects started. Her edition of British Poetry of the Long Nineteenth Century: A Selection for College Students was re-issued in 2019 with an international Creative Commons 4.0 license, which means the digital edition is now free. She also has published several articles and book chapters on aspects of George Eliot's life and works. She is honored to be a vice president and North American representative of the George Eliot Fellowship and the digital editor of the Fellowship’s George Eliot Review journal. 

Brad Hughes 

Brad Hughes (2021-present): web developer at Auburn University Libraries, Brad is also Head Developer of the three George Eliot digital projects. Brad mentors the Computer Science and Software Engineering team of student research assistants, including the Senior Design and Capstone interns. Brad programmed "George Eliot's England," an interactive geospatial exhibit.

Current Research Assistants

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Vennela Akula

Vennela Akula (2023-present) is a graduate student pursuing a degree in Computer Science and Engineering. She works on the “Transforming Middlemarch" project, an adaptation of the AHRC-supported project begun at DeMontfort University.  Vennela is highly motivated to expand her role in forthcoming Natural Language Processing (NLP) projects, as she is deeply passionate about the ever-evolving domain that explores the confluence of language and technology.

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Yuxiang Chen

Yuxiang Chen (2022-present) is a Computer Science and Software Engineering Masters' student at Auburn University. Yuxiang brings to the George Eliot Text Explorer subproject a diverse range of skills and experience in the field of AI, natural language processing, machine learning, and web application development.  He also created the AI Summaries for the George Eliot Archive.

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Sarah Guyer

Sarah Guyer (2020-21, 23-present) is a Master's student in English at Auburn University. She transitioned the George Eliot Review Online files to a new metadata and file storage system, organized and transcribed unpublished manuscript correspondence, and processed George Eliot Scholars submissions while the Archive was at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, where she completed her bachelor's in 2023. She is continuing her work in managing the metadata storage systems of the George Eliot Review Online, and is currently managing the George Eliot's Reading subproject.

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Wesley Lowman

Wesley Lowman (2023-present) is a senior majoring in computer science and minoring in finance. He is from Decatur, Alabama, and his career goal is to start his own business some time in the near future. He is currently adapting an existing online project,  "George Eliot in Weimar" as an interactive map for publication on the George Eliot Archive.

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Kaylen Michaelis

Kaylen Michaelis (2020-21, 23-present) is a Master's student in English at Auburn University. When she was an undergraduate research assistant on the project at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, she worked primarily on the Commentary by Contemporaries section by finding relevant newspaper articles, collecting metadata, and preparing the files and data for public use. She returned to the project in 2023 as a graduate research assistant at Auburn University, where she assumed the role of  assistant editor. Currently, she works on improving site accessibility through the creation of Alt-text (coming soon), developing George Eliot in Weimar (coming soon), and supervising undergraduate interns.

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Yubaraj Karki

Yubaraj Karki (2023-present) is currently pursuing an MS in Data Science Engineering as a part-time student while working full-time as a data analyst in Raleigh, NC. He is currently in the process of developing a capstone project and is looking forward to working on Natural Language Processing (NLP) and text analysis applications for the George Eliot Archive.

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Nayanika Reddy Rajoli

Nayanika Reddy Rajoli (2023-present) is a graduate student pursuing a Master's degree in Computer Science and Engineering. Her primary focus is the “Transforming Middlemarch" project, an adaptation of the AHRC-supported project begun at DeMontfort University.  Nayanika is also interested in using Natural Language Processing (NLP) to make contributions to this evolving field that unites language and technology.

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Kevien Shelton 

Kevien Shelton (2022-present) is a sophomore at Auburn University, majoring in Computer Science. He currently works to compile data from the Dictionary of Scenes and Characters subproject. He also researches, adds, and corrects data for the Alabama Authors project.

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Alexis Stoffers

Alexis Stoffers (2020-21, 23-present) is currently a Master's student studying English at Auburn University. In the past, she has redesigned our logo to add Eliot's signature; helped develop an early version of the "George Eliot's England" image gallery (completed by Hailey Fischer), designed a print edition of George Eliot in England; and designed a series of promotional brochures for the Archive. She currently works on cleaning dirty OCR and creating plain text files of George Eliot's works.

Former Research Assistants


Mavis A. Adam-Moses, 2022:
helped build the beta version of the Alabama Authors of the 19th & 20th Centuries project and processed files and metadata for the George Eliot websites

Olivia Ainooson, 2022-23: helped to buildAlabama Authors of the 19th & 20th Centuries and process files and metadata for the George Eliot websites

Dr. Antje Anderson, 2019-21: created the interactive maps of George Eliot's trips to Italy as part of a Master’s thesis in Art History

Sydney Baty, 2018-19: drafted short biographies summarizing Eliot's relationships; mined periodicals databases to find previously unknown contemporary articles on GE; presented research at an academic conference

Susannah Boyer, 2018-19: located public domain sources of Eliot-related images and verified information for the Social Network relationship summaries

Michaela Brown, 2020: located and added documents to the Archive's Commentary by Contemporaries section; developed content and metadata for its sister site, George Eliot Scholars

Mackenzie Burch, 2019-20: collected data and researched terms and accessibility for our new sister site, George Eliot Scholars, which was integral to her Honors thesis; presented research at an academic conference and poster sessions

Bryan Christman, 2020-21: assisted with the revisions of the Social Network summaries and researched books Eliot read for a new subproject, "George Eliot's Library" 

Shane Clegg, 2019: improved website functionality; created (with Riley Jhi) the original branching Chronology visualization for the George Eliot Archive; poster session presentation

Sara Duke, 2017-18: researched grant opportunities, developed the early database of contemporary reviews, presented posters and conference papers 

Megan Ekstrom, 2017-2019: database development and document preparation; researched Eliot's female friendships; presented posters and conference papers

Grace Erixon, 2019-2020: helped build interactive maps of George Eliot's trips; contributed to the relationship web; general website maintenance

Hailey Fischer, 2020-2023: developed the content for "George Eliot's England," the Archive's born-digital geo-spacial exhibit, as part of her MA thesis

Rachel Gordon, 2017-19: curated the initial George Eliot portrait gallery; developed the Published Writings database, presented at conferences and poster sessions

Sarah Guyer, 2020-21: transitioned the George Eliot Review Online files to a new metadata and file storage system, organized and transcribed unpublished manuscript correspondence, and processed George Eliot Scholars submissions

John Harkendorff, 2019-20: web developer focused on the George Eliot Scholars site; improved the website's functionality,  developed the site's contribution interface, and facilitated email outreach to potential contributors

Abby Heinzen, 2022: helped to develop the George Eliot Archive's Twitter account; also tracked metadata for open-access articles for the Scholars project

Jorryn "Jojo" Hensley, 2021-22: launched the project's first TweetDeck in 2022, combining quotations, illustrations, and news, the culmination of a subproject long in development

Riley Jhi, 2017-2020: our first web developer, designed and programmed the first iteration of the George Eliot Archive using Omeka Classic with JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. Riley created the social network data visualization model, and, in collaboration with Shane Clegg, the interactive chronology; conference, and poster presentations

Caitlin Jones, 2022-23: served as an editorial assistant for Alabama Authors of the 19th and 20th Centuries and assisted with Dr. Rilett's undergraduate honors class, mentoring students in their projects and organizing communication between the George Eliot Archive and Alabama Authors teams

Ravindra "Ravi" Joshi, 2022-23: created an interactive interface to display a searchable dictionary of George Eliot scenes and characters

Bailea Kerr, 2016-18: a founding team member, developed the earliest project databases, processed images, researched comparable digital projects and the GEF history, presented at conference and poster sessions

Rose Kottwitz, 2020: prepared metadata for the 896 "Cross Letters" and uploaded them to the Omeka platform; compared a sample set of the Cross letters with Gordon Haight's George Eliot Letters

Wesley Lowman, 2022: collaborated with the CSSE Senior Design students to create and adapt software for the George Eliot Chronology subproject to make it dynamic and editable

Minh Smith, 2022: a graduate student in CSSE interested in AI and natural language processing. Minh launched the TweetDeck subproject and helped develop the Text Explorer application

Yash Mahajan, 2022: used AI and natural language processing to help develop a toolkit for the George Eliot Text Explorer subproject

Mckenzi Marlow, 2021-22: compiled and added articles to the Commentary by Contemporaries section of the Archive and new open-access materials to George Eliot Scholars 

Breanna Martin, 2022: redesigned brochures reflecting the projects' new home at Auburn; also helped launch the Archive's new Twitter feed of compiled quotations

Kaylen Michaelis, 2020-21: developed the Commentary by Contemporaries section including metadata standards; led the team as assistant editor

Thara Michaelis, 2020-21: developed the Commentary by Contemporaries section; helped prepare the Journals and Notebooks section for publication, and added George Eliot-related information and links to Wikipedia

Anne Nagel, 2019-20: transposed the "George Eliot Portrait Gallery" section to the Central Online Victorian Educator (COVE) site; researched and co-authored (with BPR) the editorial introduction, “The George Eliot Portrait Gallery: Perspectives on the Writer” 

Matthew Nagle, 2023: worked to incorporate AI technology into the George Eliot Archive and initiated the alt-text subproject adding simple descriptions to the illustrations gallery, to improve our project’s accessibility

Harrison Patten, 2021-22: created the first dataset of Alabamian authors for the Alabama Authors project, prior to its launch, modeled on the George Eliot Archive

Chaohui (Jennie) Ren, 2022: has expertise in UI and UX design and front-end development. She helped to improve the design and accessibility of the George Eliot websites

Lindsay Roberts, 2020-21: proofread and added to the Social Network summaries; monitored contributions and prepared them for publication on George Eliot Scholars 

Maxwell Robeson, 2020-21: edited and contributed to the biographical commentary for "George Eliot's Social Network;"  also helped to edit "George Eliot's Reading" subproject 

Kayleigh Ryan, 2020-21: primarily responsible for curating and processing the Image Gallery's Illustrations collection depicting scenes and characters from George Eliot's works

Devyn Sanderson, 2021: collected and processed illustrations of George Eliot's works and scanned fragile primary documents

Cara Shade, 2023: used her graphic design skills to create “postcards” with quotations by George Eliot for use on the Archive’s social media accounts

CJ Short, 2022: programmed the George Eliot's Journals application

Tanima Shrivastava, 2020-21: maintained and improved the functionality of the three websites, especially enhancing the navigation options available with the Omeka CMS  

Hannah Stefancik, 2021-22: cleaned and standardized Dublin Core metadata for numerous collections within the Archive

Alexis Stoffers, 2020-21: redesigned our logo to add Eliot's signature; helped develop an early version of the "George Eliot's England" image gallery (completed by Hailey Fischer), designed a print edition of George Eliot in England 

Libo (Donald) Sun, 2022: developed GitHub resources and used React to create a mirror site, ensuring we always have a backup and a sandbox for developers; also updated and debugged the Social Network data visualization

Xianming Tang, 2022-23: curated, extracted, and cleaned files and metadata for both the George Eliot Archive and Alabama Authors of the 19th & 20th Centuries

Rosamond Thalken, 2016-17: a founding team member, scanned and processed documents and images, developed the first databases, and helped organize the initial project; conference, and poster presentations

Hollie Tucker, 2021-22: reorganized the Trello team task board, streamlining the website's tagging system, reworking metadata for the Beinecke Letters project, and editing "George Eliot's Social Network"

Brandon Unverferth, 2020-21: prepared a new digital edition of the George Eliot Character and Scenes dictionary for the website from the original reference by Mudge & Sears 

Abraham "Abe" Velasco, 2023: used Excel, Python, and json coding languages to clean, manipulate, and manage project data and served as a bridge between the Alabama Authors of the 19th and 20th Centuries and George Eliot Archive teams

Derek Wagner, 2016-18: a founding team member, located and digitized many of the reviews of George Eliot's works by her contemporaries

Jacob Walker, 2021-22: created an interactive map on George Eliot’s 1880 Honeymoon Trip using ArcGIS. He also created a similar multi-media presentation for the Liquid Galaxy digital wall in RBD Library