Catherine Fleming Bruce

Catherine Fleming Bruce

2017 Winner, Historic Preservation Book Prize, University of Mary Washington
Tnovsa Global Commons

Themes covered by Catherine Fleming

Sessions covered by this speaker


Conveying Our Relevance

Connect with Catherine Fleming

About this Speaker

Catherine Fleming Bruce is the author of The Sustainers: Being, Building and Doing Good through Activism in the Sacred Spaces of Civil Rights, Human Rights and Social Movements, which received the 2017 Historic Preservation Book Prize from the University of Mary Washington Center for Historic Preservation.

Named one of "15 Essential African American History Books" by National Trust for Historic Preservation, 2017, the updated and revised second edition of the full color pictorial book provides a space where social actors in transformative times will find connection between servant-leaders like John Lewis, Modjeska Simkins, Medgar Evers and Malcolm X, who themselves have hallowed certain spaces with their sacrifices for justice, and the sustainers, who ensured the transformation of Robben Island Prison, the Selma to Montgomery trail, and other sites into permanent symbols of equality.

Catherine is currently working on the restoration of the Cyril O. Spann Medical Office in Columbia, South Carolina. Dr. Spann was active in the Civil Rights Movement and served as Chief of Staff for the Good Samaritan Waverly Hospital, now under restoration by Allen University and set to honor the victims of the racially motivated shootings at Charleston's Mother Emanuel AME Church. Catherine submitted the National Register of Historic Places nomination for the Spann site, presented it successfully to the state board of review, and the site was placed on the National Register on May 20, 2019. Her group Tnovsa Global Commons sponsored a historical marker which was installed in November 2019. The site will engage in reflections on public health as the nation and world grapples with a global pandemic, racial injustice, and the epidemic of gun violence.

Bruce founded TNOVSA Global Commons, a company that supports historic and cultural preservation, global norms and ethics and engagement in transformational politics. She led the effort to preserve the home of South Carolina civil rights activist Modjeska Monteith Simkins and is currently preserving two other historic sites in Columbia, South Carolina.