Date of Publication: September 2023
Crystal Chambers, Ph.D.
Black Women’s Pathways to Executive Academic Leadership: Lessons from Lived Experiences
Over half of college presidents (55%) are planning to step down from their positions within the next five years. This impending change in leadership, particularly among underrepresented groups, presents an opportunity not only to diversify leadership but more importantly address “the need for leaders who understand the experiences of racially and ethnically diverse student bodies , who can identify barriers that mask merit, and who can garner support to make campuses welcoming and inclusive spaces for all.” Through personal reflections and insights, the authors in this volume provide a comprehensive analysis of the experiences and challenges faced by Black women leaders in community colleges, HBCUs, and predominantly White institutions (PWIs), and offers a comprehensive, practical, and research-based exploration of executive academic leadership, providing valuable insights and guidance for current and aspiring leaders in higher education and the importance of traditional and nontraditional leadership pathways to an everchanging academic environment. Included is a powerful call to action for institutions of higher education to prioritize diversity and inclusion in their leadership structures, and to recognize and support invaluable contributions of Black women leaders in shaping the future of education.