Born in Marysville, Kansas, and raised in Beatrice, Nebraska, Robert W. Cherny received his B.A. from the University of Nebraska and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Columbia University. He is professor of history at San Francisco State University. His books include COMPETING VISIONS: A HISTORY OF CALIFORNIA (with Richard Griswold del Castillo, 2005); AMERICAN POLITICS IN THE GILDED AGE, 1868-1900 (1997); SAN FRANCISCO, 1865-1932: POLITICS, POWER, AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (with William Issel, 1986); A RIGHTEOUS CAUSE: THE LIFE OF WILLIAM JENNINGS BRYAN (1985, 1994); and POPULISM, PROGRESSIVISM, AND THE TRANSFORMATION OF NEBRASKA POLITICS, 1885-1915 (1981). He is co-editor of AMERICAN LABOR AND THE COLD WAR: UNIONS, POLITICS, AND POSTWAR POLITICAL CULTURE (with William Issel and Keiran Taylor, 2004). His articles on politics and labor in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries have appeared in journals, anthologies, and historical dictionaries and encyclopedias. In 2000, he and Ellen Du Bois co-edited a special issue of the "Pacific Historical Review" that surveyed woman suffrage movements in nine locations around the Pacific Rim. He has been an NEH Fellow, Distinguished Fulbright Lecturer at Lomonosov Moscow State University (Russia), and Visiting Research Scholar at the University of Melbourne (Australia). He has served as president of H-Net (an association of more than one hundred electronic networks for scholars in the humanities and social sciences), the Society for Historians of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era and of the Southwest Labor Studies Association; as treasurer of the Organization of American Historians; and as a member of the council of the American Historical Association, Pacific Coast Branch.
He is an associate professor of sociology & former director of the Center for Latin American & Iberian Studies at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. He is the author of four other books, including Feeding a Hungry Planet & Inside Development in Latin America.