Jessica C. Neal (Jes) — she/her — is a millennial creative, archivist, and black memory worker based in Mobile, AL. Informed by the frameworks of Black studies, Black feminist theory, decolonial theory, and critical archival studies, her work seeks to investigate, interrogate, imagine and document practices of liberation, heritage, and culture.
Jes is also deeply invested in serving as an ally and collaborator within global marginalized communities to create more equity in who gets historicized and to implement post-custodial archival models. Her long-term focus is her work in community and family archives and documenting black cultural production–-especially in the arts, literary, and social movements–-through oral histories and digital projects.
Currently, her primary role is as the Records Management Project Manager at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). Through Vanguard, she is a curator and archival consultant for the Sterling A. Brown papers at Williams College and an oral history and archival consultant with The Gates Preserve. Additional professional involvements include serving on the Coordinating Committee of NDSA (2021-2023) and as Chair of DigiPres22, being a member of the 2023 Society of American Archivists (SAA) Nominating Committee, and her role as a Board Director for the Sexual Minorities Archives.