Executive Director, AfricanSky.Org
Professor of Anthropology, Fairfield University
Dr. Lacy is founder and Executive Director of African Sky, Inc., a non-profit organization that serves hard-working farm families in rural Mali, West Africa. African Sky’s projects are organized according to four thematic service programs: food security, education, community health, and community arts. The organization is dedicated to working within local ecological and cultural systems to promote sustainable food production, striving to bridge the rich heritage and knowledge of farming communities with ideas and resources from scientists and other specialists. Current African Sky projects include collaborations with village women’s associations to develop gardens and fruit tree orchards as well as reforestation efforts (www.africansky.org).
Dr. Lacy’s research interests include sustainable development, food production, rural poverty and hunger, farming families and communities, knowledge production, US-Africa policy, and intellectual property rights associated with participatory plant breeding. For nearly a decade, he has consulted agricultural scientists who incorporate collaborative research and learning into Mali’s national plant breeding program. He presented this work in Human Ecology (2006), at the Institute d’Economie Rurale in Mali, and at the Guangxi Maize Research Institute in China as part of an international consortium with partners in China, Cuba, Ethiopia, Honduras, Mali, and Syria.
Professor of Anthropology and Black Studies at Fairfield University (Fairfield, Connecticut), Dr. Lacy has published widely and has received numerous honors and awards, including his appointment as Marjorie Shostak Distinguished Lecturer in Anthropology, Emory University; the 2008 Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award from Moms on a Mission & Strategic Solutions Group, Inc.; 2008 Distinguished Teaching Award, Phi Beta Kappa, Emory University; 2003-2004 Fletcher Jones Dissertation Fellowship, Office of the President, University of California; 2001-2002 Fulbright Scholar, U.S. Department of State, Institute of International Education. Dr. Lacy received a doctoral degree in anthropology from the University of California, Santa Barbara. After receiving his PhD from UCSB, he taught in that university’s Department of Black Studies as a University of California Faculty Fellow. He has worked in Mali since 1994, when he served in the Peace Corps.