Monica O’Connell is an independent scholar, writer, and diversity consultant living in Southeastern Wisconsin.

About Me

SONY DSCI currently delight in wearing many hats. Most recently, I started Whistling Girl Consultancy to utilize ethnographic research methods to help identify and understand points of “diversity resistance” and to explore ways to develop diversity, inclusion, and equity in arts and culture organizations. I served as executive director of the Center for Black Music Research at Columbia College Chicago from 2007-2015. Before joining the CBMR, I worked with the American Music Center and with David Bury and Associates, a New York firm specializing in fundraising and development for arts organizations.

Broadly speaking, I am interested in black American musical culture (particularly that centered around the concert stage) and the infrastructural issues and challenges that face musicians and scholars of color. Concerned with institutional diversity, resilience, and relevance, I work to apply the same critical and analytical skills that I bring to scholarly subject matter to an examination of institutional practices.

I hold a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from New York University and have been a John Nicholas Brown Center for the Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage and a Chicago Community Trust Fellow.

You can view my CV here.