2021 Conference Speakers

Dr. Kevin G. McDonald

Vice President for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Community Partnerships @University of Virginia

Kevin McDonald is the University of Virginia’s Vice President for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Community Partnerships. He joined UVA after serving as the chief diversity officer and vice chancellor for inclusion, diversity, and equity at the University of Missouri System and the University of Missouri – Columbia. Prior to the University of Missouri System and Flagship campus, McDonald held positions at several other universities, including as vice president and associate provost for diversity, equity, and inclusion at Rochester Institute of Technology, Vice President for equity and inclusion at Virginia Tech, as associate director for compliance and conflict resolution at Johns Hopkins University, and as campus compliance officer at the University of Maryland, College Park. Prior to his work in higher education, McDonald worked for the U.S. Department of Justice and for Network Solutions, Inc.

Dr. Sharon Fries-Britt

Professor @University of Maryland- College Park

Sharon Fries-Britt is a Professor of Higher Education at the University of Maryland, College Park in the Department of Counseling, Higher Education and Special Education (CHSE). She is a University of Maryland Distinguished Scholar Teacher. Her research examines the experiences of high achieving Blacks in higher education, underrepresented minorities (URMs) in STEM fields and issues of race, equity and diversity. Dr. Fries-Britt has published widely within peer-reviewed journals and she has served on the editorial boards of The Journal of College Student Development, The Journal of Diversity in Higher Education and the College Student Affairs Journal. Her research has been funded and supported by the Lumina Foundation, National Society of Black Physicists and the National Science Foundation.

Dr. Richard C. Fording

Professor @The University of Alabama

Richard C. Fording is the Marilyn Williams Elmore and John Durr Elmore Endowed Professor of Political Science at the University of Alabama. He earned his B.A. at the University of Florida (1986), and his Ph.D. from Florida State University (1998). His primary teaching and research interests include public policy, race and politics, state politics, social movements, and quantitative methodology. He is the author or coauthor of articles appearing in a variety of journals, including American Political Science Review, American Sociological Review, American Journal of Political Science, American Journal of Sociology and The Journal of Politics. He is the coauthor of Disciplining the Poor: Neoliberal Paternalism and the Persistent Power of Race (University of Chicago Press) and Hard White: The Mainstreaming of Racism in American Politics (Oxford University Press, Forthcoming 2020).

Dr. Martha Crowther

Professor @The University of Alabama

Martha Crowther, PhD, MPH is a tenured professor in the University of Alabama, College of Community Health Sciences (CCHS) in the departments of Community Medicine and Population Health and Family Internal and Rural Medicine. She is also the Associate Dean for Research and Health Policy for CCHS. Additionally, she is an Investigator in the Institute for Rural Health Research and a Scientist in the UAB Integrative Center for Aging Research. Dr. Crowther received her PhD from Duke University, her MPH from Yale University, and her BA from the University of California, Berkeley. She is trained as a clinical psychologist; her MPH is focused on Chronic Disease Epidemiology. Dr. Crowther has extensive clinical and research experience in interdisciplinary healthcare, health disparities, mental health and aging, and caregiving. She has been the recipient of federal and foundation funding. Dr. Crowther is a member of several professional associations. She was a standing member of a grant review group for NIMH. Dr. Crowther has also published journal articles and book chapters on mental health and aging, rural aging, and cultural competency in research and clinical endeavors. She currently serves on a national committee-The American Psychological Associations’ Committee on Rural Health. She is also a member of the Administration for Community Living, Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Advisory Council; a federal committee. Dr. Crowther also provides behavioral healthcare in primary care and psychiatric settings.