Dr. Grimes is Associate Dean in Office of African-American Affairs (OAAA) and an Associate Professor in the Curry School of Education at University of Virginia. At OAAA, her responsibilities include coordinating the Faculty-Student Mentoring Program and implementing the GradSTAR Program to promote students' academic excellence and leadership development. In these roles, Dr. Grimes coordinates academic support and tutorial services, as well as advises students who pursue pre-professional and post-graduate degree programs. Since 2006, Dr. Grimes has been an OAAA faculty mentor and conducted workshops on a variety of academic and leadership topics. She has also participated in many university efforts to increase diversity among the faculty and student body. In 2011, she received University of Virginia's EOP Champion Award recognizing her commitment to the advancement of equal rights and social justice at the University.
As a faculty member, Dr. Grimes teaches in the Curry School's Department of Curriculum, Instruction and Special Education (CISE) and in the UVa School of Continuing and Professional Studies. Some of the courses that she has taught include Cultural Geography, Education and Cultural Diversity, and Foundations in American Education. She has also been a scholar-consultant and presenter on several Teaching American History (TAH) Grants in collaboration with the Virginia Center for Digital History and school districts throughout the Commonwealth.
Dr. Grimes has also maintained an active research agenda. She is the recipient of the Exemplary Research in Social Studies Award by the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) and was awarded a research grant by the UVa Office of the President to study Curry's role in public school desegregation efforts during the Civil Rights era. She is author or co-author of research articles that address the history of African American public schooling, esp. in the South, and civic education and engagement among youth, especially those from underrepresented groups. More recently, she researches the uses of technology in education, particularly for elementary school teachers and students. Dr. Grimes has presented her work at numerous national and state academic conferences and has served as an editorial board member of Theory and Research in Social Education and contributing editor to Social Studies Research and Practice on-line journal.
Dr. Grimes earned her Bachelor of Science in Speech degree from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. She holds a Masters of Arts in Teaching and a Ph.D in Educational Studies from Emory University. Before graduating from Emory, she was a middle grades language arts and social studies teacher in the Atlanta and DeKalb County (GA) public school systems and was an instructor and student teaching supervisor at Mercer University (GA).
Her affiliations include membership in the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), the American Educational Research Association (AERA) and the National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS). Dr. Grimes is a past board member of the Orange County (VA) African American Historical Society, and a research consultant to the Jefferson School City Center Project in Charlottesville, VA, extending her commitment to help local communities document their history and culture.