Prof. Jane Kamensky (HIST) has left the University after serving as a professor at Brandeis for 20 years. Prof. David Engerman (HIST) took over as chair for the History department in her stead.

The American history professor wrote in an email to the Justice that she will be taking a teaching position at Brown University as the university’s first incumbent of the Mary Ann Lippitt Chair in American History. The chair was established under the name of Mary Ann Lippitt, a pilot who worked as one of few female flight instructors before founding Lippitt Aviation following World War II, according to the Rhode Island Hall of Fame.

As a member of Brown’s faculty, she wrote that she is excited about having access to many of the university’s resources, including many particular to her field of American history such as the John Carter Brown Library, the John Hay Library and the Rhode Island School of Design Museum, which also serves as Brown’s teaching museum.

“It was a tough decision, but change is good for all concerned,” Kamensky wrote.

She wrote that she plans to continue working with her current group of graduate students at Brandeis until they complete their dissertations, but otherwise will commence her teaching at Brown.

Kamensky will be spending her first year at Brown on leave as Cornille Distinguished Visiting Professor in the Newhouse Center for Humanities at Wellesley College. The American history professor plans to finish her latest publication while on leave, the biography of John Singleton Copley, an American painter from the 18th century, many of whose works chronicle the history of Boston during his lifetime. The book, Copley: A Life in Color, will be published by W. W. Norton & Co.

Dean of Arts and Sciences Susan Birren wrote in an email to the Justice that since Kamensky had come to the end of her second term as chair, the History department was already in the process of selecting a new chair.

“Professor Engerman was proposed by members of the History department, a recommendation that I was happy to accept,” Birren wrote.

Engerman officially began his role as chair on July 1.