An Unlikely Partnership: Key Figures

Student Service Corps, 1972

Grassroot Volunteers:

The Appalachian Land Ownership Survey Task Force was comprised of approximately 80 volunteers that worked in their respective state teams, each with a single coordinator for the state. These volunteers worked at a grassroots level, meaning that they were not organized under a large chain of command, but they reported to their state coordinator. The dedication that these volunteers had was based on their own interests in the project. These were local people doing the work rather than people solely in academia working on the survey.

Historic Marker, Appalachian State University, 1978

Appalachian State University:

The University was a primary sponsoring institution and handled administrative and fiscal details. Dr. Patricia Beaver and Bill Horton were integral figures from ASU working on the survey. Dr. Beaver, a former Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Center for Appalachian Studies, served as project director of the Appalachian Land Ownership Study. Bill Horton served as the Research Coordinator and regional team member. The University served as an invaluable academic resource to guide and facilitate research.

Highlander Folk School Main Building

Highlander Research and Education:

This activist organization serves as a “catalyst for grassroots organizing and movement building in Appalachia and the South….working with people fighting for justice, equality and sustainability, supporting their efforts to take collective action to shape their own destiny.” The center orchestrated the Appalachian Land Ownership survey and worked to empower Appalachian communities.

Key Figures