Donald Braid, Ph.D., teaches folklore, English, and anthropology and serves as Director of the Center for Citizenship and Community at Butler University. He received his doctorate in folklore from Indiana University in 1996 and his B.S. in physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1978. His research interests include traditional arts, narrative theory, and performance, especially as they intersect issues of worldview, cultural identity, meaning, and belief. He has conducted ethnographic research with the Travelling People of Scotland—
focusing primarily on Traveller storytelling and ballad singing traditions—and diverse local and immigrant communities in the U.S. Since 2001, he has used the service-learning pedagogy to engage students in a wide range of general education and disciplinary courses.
As director (and previously as assistant director) of Butler University’s Center for Citizenship and Community (CCC) he works with faculty, staff, and students from across the university to develop sustainable community partnerships for service-learning and civic education initiatives as they relate to the academic curriculum. Most recently, he served as Principal Investigator for Music First, a research program funded by the Indiana State Department of Health and local foundations to examine whether we could increase the quality of life for nursing home residents with dementia through creating and administering personal music playlists. The Center also provides oversight and Leadership for Butler University’s Indianapolis Community Requirement, wherein Butler students conduct service-learning in a wide range of local communities and community-based organizations.