Mary Blackwood Collier is professor of French language and literature at Westmont College, where she has taught for more than 35 years. A native of Santa Barbara, Ms. Collier studied at the Music Academy of the West (piano ’61) and graduated from Laguna Blanca School and UC Santa Barbara, where she also received a master’s degree. She went on to earn a doctorate with highest honors in French literature from the Université de Paris, Sorbonne. Ms. Collier has published the book La Carmen essentielle et sa réalization au spectacle, a literary and musical analysis of Mérimée’s and Bizet’s Carmens and seven 20th-century interpretations of the character. She has also published a number of scholarly articles and presents papers regularly at international academic conferences. Ms. Collier is currently working on a memoir, Letters from Paris: 1970-2010. Ms. Collier was knighted by the Consul General of the French Republic in 2012 and named Chevalier de France dans l’Ordre des Palmes Académiques in recognition of her decades-long efforts to promote French language and culture in the United States.