Verne Harris heads the Nelson Mandela Foundation’s leadership and knowledge development processes. He was Mandela’s archivist from 2004 to 2013, directed the Foundation’s archives programme for 15 years and the dialogue and advocacy programme for 5 years. He is an adjunct professor at the Nelson Mandela University and an honorary research fellow with the University of Cape Town.
He participated in a range of structures which transformed South Africa’s apartheid archival landscape, including the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and is a former Deputy Director of the National Archives. He has authored or co-authored five books, but is probably best-known for leading the editorial team on the best-seller Nelson Mandela: Conversations with Myself.
He is the recipient of an honorary doctorate from the University of Cordoba in Argentina (2014), held the Follet Chair at Dominican University (Chicago) in 2018-9, received archival publication awards from Australia, Canada and South Africa, and both his novels were short-listed for South Africa’s M-Net Book Prize. He has served on the Boards of Archival Science, the Ahmed Kathrada Foundation, the Freedom of Expression Institute, and the South African History Archive.
Harris will give a talk for archives and Master’s students on Monday, Sept. 16th from 12 to 1 p.m. in BL 417, and a public talk on Wednesday, Sept. 18th from 5:00-6:30pm in BL 417.
The Harris talks are part of a series of visits by prominent archivists to the Faculty of Information, all taking place in September. Details on the Jarrett Drake visit are here and on the Laura Millar visit here.