Dr. Tiffany M. Blackmon is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana. She received her BA in anthropology, in 1991, and her MA in sociology, in 1995, from the University of New Orleans. Completing her PhD in anthropology from Purdue University, in West Lafayette, Indiana, in May 2003, Dr. Blackmon's dissertation covered Hinduism, the anthropology and sociology of religion, and new religious movements, a.k.a. cults.
Focusing on the reasons that some members of a society would choose to join a non-mainstream religious organization, Dr. Blackmon conducted fieldwork in India and Pennsylvania, living for 14 months with a Hindu organization in an Indian ashram.
Believing that the study of anthropology is a privilege and a joy because it is a field that explores humanity in all places in the world, at all times, Dr. Blackmon maintains that by studying humankind, as a whole, we are simply learning more about ourselves. Dr. Blackmon's first book, The Ashram Next Door Alternative Religion and Community Acceptance in Rural Pennsylvania, was published in summer 2009. In addition to teaching for AMU full time, Dr. Blackmon teaches for Northern Virginia Community College. Dr. Blackmon currently resides in VA.