Zachary Blair is an anthropologist, researcher, writer, community organizer, academic, and mass violence victims advocate.
He received his PhD in anthropology with a concentration in Gender and Women's Studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago in December 2018. He has worked as a researcher, curriculum developer, university administrator, editor, visiting professor, and public health specialist. He also co-founded the nonprofit VictimsFirst, which helps victims directly and guides communities in their response to mass violence, including mass shootings. As the Vice President of VictimsFirst, Zachary helped ensure over $8.9M were granted directly to mass shooting victims between 2021 and 2022. In 2022, VictimsFirst joined hands with VTVCare and the Christina Grimmie Foundation to form the Victim-to-Victim Alliance (VTVAlliance)—a trusted and centralized resource for victims of gun violence.
Zachary also co-founded the Community Coalition Against a Pulse Museum (CCAPM), organizing Pulse shooting survivors and amplifying their voices against those who seek to turn the mass shooting into a profit-making tourist attraction, as well as raise awareness about various issues surrounding the nightclub and shooting.
Zachary is currently working on a book entitled, Machine of Desire, based on his doctoral research on urban development and the gentrification of Boystown, Chicago's gay neighborhood. He is also working on a number of projects related to the political ecologies of development and violence in Central Florida, specifically Orlando and Winter Park.