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Denise Strong, PhD
Denise Strong has over 30 years’ experience in higher education, nonprofit leadership and public service. Her work as a teacher, administrator, leader and citizen activist has focused on processes by which low income and communities of color develop strategies and garner resources for enhancing their quality of life. She has worked in communities to provide training and technical resources to enable traditionally disenfranchised groups to better understand and participate in the public policy process.
Dr. Strong has been a leader, administrator and program evaluator in a range of nonprofit organizations working to address homelessness, discrimination against women, violence prevention, community development, workforce development, fair housing, and access to health care and environmental justice.
She has been an administrator with a family literacy program, and an environmental outreach program designed to provide the university’s expertise on environmental issues to low income and minority communities along the Mississippi River industrial corridor. She coordinated a community-based program in schools designed to prevent chronic health illness in New Orleans. The program involved strengthening the teaching of nutrition and physical education and educating parents and community residents.
She has facilitated workshops on strategic planning and program evaluation for grassroots nonprofits. She has also facilitated workshops on issues of race and racism for community leaders and university faculty and administrators.
Dr. Strong received a B.A. in Sociology from Kalamazoo College, a Masters and Doctorate in Public Administration from Virginia Commonwealth University. She also spent a year and a half at Fourth Bay College in Freetown, Sierre Leone, first as a student and then as a research assistant. Her continuing education includes participating in training in group behavior and organization change with the National Training Laboratory (NTL) as well as anti-racism training with the People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond and the Racial Equity Institute.