writer | educator | listener | committed to rural people and places

Jordan looking at the camera, standing on the beach.

Jordan Laney is an educator, writer, research consultant and community development organizer in Central Appalachia.  She holds a PhD in Cultural and Social Theory from Virginia Tech, an M.A. in Appalachian Studies with a concentration in music from Appalachian State University, and a B.F.A. in Creative Writing with a concentration in folklore from Goddard College. She is also trained in Material Culture and the Humanities, Critical Pedagogy, and Women’s and Gender Studies.

For over the past ten years she has worked in communities and institutes of higher education throughout Central and Southern Appalachia. In 2017, she was inducted into the Edward A. Bouchet Graduate Honor Society at Yale University in recognition of inclusion and diversity efforts in higher education. Laney was the inaugural recipient of the Rosenberg Bluegrass Scholarship Award, an academic recognition from the International Bluegrass Music Association (2019). She was the 2016 recipient of the Instructor of the Year Award at Virginia Tech (VT), and an Appalachian Sound Archives Fellow at Berea College (2016).

Laney was the co-editor of SPECTRA: The Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Theory Archives (with Anthony Sczeurek, 2015-2017). Her writing can be found in the Appalachian Journal, Dinner Bell, Pine Mountain Sand and Gravel, and Bluegrass Today. She is currently collaborating on two projects: Appalachian Musics: A Textbook andAppalachian Re-Settlement Project (a Voice of Witness project), and a poetry chapbook on displacement.

As an educator and facilitator beyond the traditional classroom, Laney is a nationally certified Mental Health First Aid trainer and regularly leads workshops on inclusive pedagogy and equitable learning environments. She has completed 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training and is currently working towards her 300 hour certification at In Balance Yoga in Blacksburg, VA.

Interests include: Appalachia, bluegrass music, human bodies and well-being, relationships between people and place, documentary poetics, and qualitative methodology. 

Get in touch: iamjordanlaney@gmail.com


Department of Engineering Education, Virginia Tech

Department of Religion and Culture, Virginia Tech

Appalachian Studies, Appalachian State University

The Institute for Liberatory Innovation

Voice of Witness: Amplifying Unheard Voices

 In Balance Yoga, Blacksburg, Virginia

Southern Appalachian Writers Cooperative


get in touch!     828. 406 – 6514.    iamjordanlaney@gmail.com