About 'Me,': Kevin T. Mason, PhD

Updated: Apr 22

Hello! I'm Kevin Mason, and you can learn a little bit more about me in this section.


I grew up in Iowa, splitting time between Forest City, Mason City, and eventually Pella. I spent the bulk of my childhood and adolescence in Marion County, before eventually returning to North Iowa to attend NIACC. I briefly left the state to finish my undergrad, before eventually returning to the Hawkeye State.


I have taught history (primarily American, but a little of everything) at Waldorf University in Forest City for the past seven years. I chair the department of History, Geography, and Political Science, and enjoy working closely with the students in my courses. While at Waldorf, I enrolled as a regular PhD student at Iowa State University and spent several years balancing a 4-4 teaching load with several weekly trips down U.S. Highway 69 to Ames for coursework. In 2020, I successfully defended my dissertation (https://lib.dr.iastate.edu/etd/17929/ ) to complete my PhD in Rural and Environmental History.


The history of the American Midwest, and Iowa specifically, constitute my primary research focus. You can read more about why I have chosen to undertake the 'Notes on Iowa' project under the 'About' section, but the most significant personal reason for undertaking this work centers on accessibility. During my formal training as a historian, I yearned for the freedom to create in a way that could connect with people outside of the discipline. In 'Notes on Iowa' I hope to provide ways to better understand Iowa history for all people.


Aside from 'Notes on Iowa' and teaching, I also seek to serve my community in a variety of ways. I currently serve on the Board of Directors for Wright on the Park, the non-profit group that owns and maintains the only remaining Frank Lloyd Wright designed hotel, Mason City's Historic Park Inn. I also serve on the Board of Directors for the Winnebago Historical Society, an organization that operates the Mansion Museum of Forest City, Heritage Park of North Iowa, and the Leibrand-Whiteis Research Center. The Preservation Iowa Board of Directors provides me with opportunities to serve at the state-level, and I continue to work on the organization's 'Most Endangered Buildings' program, the 'Iowa Preservation At It's Best' Awards, and in other capacities. I also serve as the Program Director for the National History Day in Iowa Prairie School District Contest hosted at Waldorf University. Nationally, I serve as the Tresurer for the Society of Historians for the Gilded Age and Progressive Era.


I currently reside in Mason City, Iowa, with my wife Marissa, and our Scottish Terrier, Arthur.


I try to stay active creating, and a few of my recent publications include:


Mason, Kevin. “Inkpaduta in Iowa: Dakota Decline, Dispossession, and Erasure .” Annals of Iowa, Vol. 80, Issue 1. April 2021. Des Moines, IA: State Historical Society of Iowa.


Mason, Kevin. “Choose Your Own Adventure: Creating Assignment Autonomy with Self-Determination Theory in the US History Survey.” Teaching United States History. May 2020. http://www.teachingushistory.co/


Mason, Kevin. "Winnebago and the Flying W(in): How to Build an Iconic Company and Save Rural America." 360 Review: Energy, Agriculture, Finance, Culture & Faith on the Northern Great Plains, Vol. 1, Issue 2 (Summer/Fall 2016). Bismarck, ND: University of Mary, 60-69.


Specific Academic Information:


Ph.D. in Rural and Environmental History (2020) – Iowa State University (Ames, Iowa)

M.A. in Organizational Leadership (2016) – Waldorf University (Forest City, Iowa) M.A. in History (2013)– Wayland Baptist University (Plainview, Texas) B.S. in Social and Behavioral Sciences (2011) – University of Mary (Bismarck, North Dakota) A.A. (2009)– North Iowa Area Community College (Mason City, Iowa)

High School - Pella Community High School (Pella, Iowa)




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