Dr. Sylvia D. Hoffert received her M.A. in History from Western Michigan University in 1968. She then received her Ph.D. in History from Indiana University-Bloomington in 1984. Dr. HoffertFrom 1984 to 1988, she was chair of the Department of History at the St. Louis Country Day School in St. Louis, Missouri, as well as a visiting lecturer in the Department of History and Women’s Studies Program at Washington University. Dr. Hoffert then accepted a position in the Department of History at Southwest Missouri State University, and advanced from assistant to associate professor. In 1995, she joined the Department of History at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill as a full professor and became a distinguished professor in 2004. Dr. Hoffert left her position at Chapel Hill to become a full professor in the Department of History at Texas A&M University in 2005. She retired in 2011.
Dr. Hoffert is the author of five books on women and gender in the United States during the 19th and 20th centuries, and has had articles published in several major journals. Her most recent book is Alva Vanderbilt Belmont: Unlikely Champion of Women’s Rights, published by Indiana University Press in 2011. She is currently working on a series of articles about Elizabeth Keckly, a slave who bought her freedom and became Mary Todd Lincoln’s seamstress and companion in Washington, D.C. Dr. Hoffert makes her home in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.