Professor Davis was an active and beloved faculty member in Beloit’s sociology department when she died at 57.
Her impact on scores of students over 15 years of teaching brought forth an outpouring from alumni. Many credited her with drawing them into the field of sociology, and with becoming better scholars regardless of the focus of their academic work. Professor Davis is remembered for shaping students’ lives and mentoring and supporting them as they found their voices to work toward social justice.
Former colleague Tom McBride, professor emeritus of English, wrote that Davis “lived for the discipline of sociology, always convinced of its contextual insights, and for social justice, about which she had a realistic but pervasively intense interest. She was also a delightful and dependable person, who added class, friendship, and scholarship to the Beloit College community.”
Professor Davis joined Beloit in 2006. Her scholarly interests included the study of social inequalities — including race, ethnicity, gender, and class — and juvenile delinquencies, especially among adolescent girls.
Her research culminated in Girls and Juvenile Justice: Power, Status, and the Social Construction of Delinquency (Palgrave Macmillan 2017), a well-received book that deepens an understanding of gender, race and ethnicity, and class as interconnected forces affecting girls in the criminal justice system.
She held B.A. and M.A. degrees from American University and a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA).
Members of the Beloit community are planning a celebration of Professor Davis’s life at a later date.