Mission Possible: Promoting the Positive Image of African Americans
Gloria Brown, Ph.D. was awarded the African American Success Foundation Lydia Donaldson Tutt-Jones Memorial Research Grant in 2007 while pursuing a Ph.D. in Education K-12 Leadership, Walden University, Minneapolis, MN in support of her research titled African American Students Defy the Achievement Gap: A Phenomenological Study.
Dr. Brown was born in St. Louis, Missouri but calls Preston, Mississippi home since that is where she spent most of her childhood. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from Rust College, Holly Springs, Mississippi, a Master of Music from Cleveland State University in Cleveland, and a PhD in K-12 Educational Leadership from Walden University in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She is licensed by the state of Ohio for Music, All Areas of the Humanities, and as high school principal. She is, also, lifetime certified in Bridges out of Poverty.
Dr. Brown has taught Music and English in Mississippi, served as Director of Early Childhood Education in Illinois, taught middle school Music, served as middle school assistant principal, high school assistant principal, high school principal, and was first to bring Parent University to Cleveland Metropolitan Schools. She was Director of Racial-Ethnic Ministry for the East Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church for 9 years. In addition, Brown works as a lead evaluator for AdvancED, an agency that accredits schools in 67 countries. She currently engages in 21st Century Grant Proposal reading and scoring for the Ohio Department of Education. She also teaches online courses entitled Diversity, Leading for Differentiated Instruction, and Community, Cultural, and Relational Leadership for Indiana Wesleyan University in the Adult and Graduate Studies Department. She develops and facilitates workshops on Dimensions of Diversity (e.g., gender inequity, racism, poverty, and differently-abled) in Ashland University’s Professional Development Department. Other workshops include Group Dynamics, Team Building, and the Israel/Palestine Conflict for ecumenical audiences.
Dr. Brown received a White House Honor for her Working Women Count project in which she was named National Honor Roll Woman by Former First Lady and Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. Commendations for this project were awarded by Former US Secretary of Labor, Robert B. Reich, the US Women’s Bureau, Cleveland Metropolitan Schools, and numerous political figures in the state of Ohio. Although Brown was among 40 women honored throughout the United States, she was the only one from Ohio to receive such a distinction. The honor was bestowed at the White House and her story was covered by Associated Press International. Her latest accomplishment is that of publishing a book entitled, Through it All: A Compilation of Short Stories Based on Lived Experiences.
She has participated in a mission trip to Rwanda where she helped to build mud houses for orphans. Her peace advocacy work includes a trip to Israel/Palestine. Her work on the Israel/Palestine Conflict took her to the Carter Center in Atlanta to participate in a forum at the request of President Jimmie Carter. She also participated in a pilgrimage to South Korea to learn more about the culture since she was responsible for resourcing all racial-ethnic constituencies while working for the East Ohio Conference.
Brown has led Wesley Sermon Studies in partnership with Ashland Theological Seminary and the Methodist Theological School in Ohio that spanned the North Central Jurisdiction of the United Methodist Church. She sponsored an outreach project called Blankets for the Broken and has led workshops for an ecumenical group called Barrier Breakers. She has served as Finance Chair for the National Strengthening the Black Church for the 21st Century (SBC 21) and currently serves as the North Central Jurisdictional Representative to the National Black Staff Forum as a nominating committee member, serves on the Strengthening the Black Church for the 21st Century (SBC 21) Strategic Planning Design Team, and serves on the SBC 21 Collaborative Coaching Team. Locally, she is Chair of the Staff, Pastor-Parish Relations Committee at Faith United Methodist Church in Twinsburg, OH, is a member of the East Ohio Conference Commission on Equitable compensation, and serves as Chaplain of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Lambda Phi Omega Chapter in Cleveland.
She is a proponent of social change and has a long history of advocating for “the least of these”. She led an awareness campaign exposing sweat shop conditions and the exploitation of women and children in El Salvador and Honduras. In Mississippi, she saw racism at its worse. She was a trailblazer in school desegregation while teaching in Kemper County (aka Bloody Kemper) Schools in Mississippi.
One of her favorite scriptures is, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1, King James Version). Having overcome severe health challenges, she frequently gives testament to her faith journey, the power of prayer, and the fact that she is one of His miracles. Her favorite song is, If I Can Help Somebody.
Brown’s hobbies are gardening, playing piano, singing, traveling, participating in service projects, and deep sea fishing. She has two daughters, seven grandchildren, and four adorable great grandchildren.