Richard E. Sullivan was a founder of the modern academic field of early medieval history. He taught at Michigan State University and also served there as a dean and provost. In addition, Sullivan was a member of the founding committee of the Michigan Humanities Council. This essay explores the ways he helped to establish the broad national public humanities movement in the 1970s and appeared as the concluding essay Medieval Monks and Their World, Ideas and Realities: Studies in Honor of Richard Sullivan edited by Michael Frassetto, Amy Livingstone, and David Blanks (Leiden: Brill, 2006, pp. 195-201).