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Executive Team

Dr. Adrienne Dixson is the Executive Director of the ECRI and a professor in the Educational Leadership Studies department. Her research primarily focuses on how race, class, and gender intersect and impact educational equity in urban schooling contexts. She locates her research within two theoretical frameworks: Critical Race Theory (CRT) and Black feminist theories. Dr. Dixson and her colleague, Celia K. Rousseau-Anderson, edited CRT in Education: All God’s Children Got a Song (2006, Routledge), which was one of the first book-length texts on CRT in education. She is also a co-editor with Marvin Lynn, of the Handbook of Critical Race Theory and Education. Most recently, Dr. Dixson has been interested in how educational equity is mediated by school reform policies in the urban south. Specifically, she is interested in school reform in post-Katrina New Orleans, how local actors make sense of and experience those reform policies, and how those policies become, or are “racialized.” Her research has been funded by the Spencer Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation, and the National Science Foundation. Dr. Dixson is the recipient of multiple awards and honors for her research on CRT. In 2021, she was inducted as a Fellow in the American Educational Research Association.



Dr. Thais Council is the Assistant Director of Community Engagement for the ECRI. She joined the University of Kentucky as an Assistant Professor of Literacy Education in the College of Education and a Faculty Affiliate of African American and Africana Studies in 2021 after nearly two decades as a reading specialist, literacy advocate, and teacher educator. Her scholarship explores the intersection of urban education reform and gentrification in Black communities. More specifically, Dr. Council examines how profiteers use deficit literacy narratives to advance reform agendas, counter to the critical literacy practices Black community members employ to lay claim to neighborhoods and schools. She employs the Black Intellectual Tradition as a theoretical lens to privilege the lives, expertise, and wisdom of Black people and participatory research methods as a methodological alternative to academic research conducted through a hegemonic gaze.



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Graduate Student Team

Vanity Jenkins is a Ph.D. student in the Department of Educational Leadership Studies at the UK College of Education.