DR. TCHET DEREIC
DORMAN AWARD FOR MULTICULTURAL LEADERSHIP
Dr. Tchet Dereic Dorman was an active member of the National Association of Multicultural Education (NAME), including serving as a Regional Representative on NAME’s National Board. and an integral member of NAME’s Pennsylvania chapter – one of NAME’s longest standing chapters. Dr. Dorman helped to resurrect the PA-NAME chapter after several years of inactivity. He served as PA-NAME’s president for many years, and the chapter thrived under his leadership. He collaborated with colleges and universities across the state of Pennsylvania to host the PA-NAME conference. He brought together prominent scholars and K – 16 multicultural educators and leaders to exchange and discuss critical themes related to diversity, equity, and social justice in education.
Dr. Dorman’s leadership and contributions extended beyond PA-NAME and NAME. He was an educator, administrator and organizational leader, having served at a range of institutions, including 15 colleges and universities. For many years, Dr. Dorman served as the Director of the Center for Social Justice and Multicultural Education at Temple University. He participated in and supported the establishment of the inter-group dialogue certificate program at Temple University. He also led the Real Talks events at Temple University and throughout the city of Philadelphia. Dr. Dorman founded Pyramid Consulting Services, a non-profit multi-dimensional emancipatory educational organization. He was also a Senior Consultant for the Blue Door Group, a consulting firm dedicated to inter-group dialogue facilitation and diversity, inclusion and equity education.
Dr. Dorman embodied the very best of what it means to be a multicultural educator and leader. His knowledge of the field and passion for humanity informed his approach to dialogue. His good-natured sense of humor and infectious disposition created an atmosphere where creativity and cooperation thrived. He possessed a wonderful skill and talent to engage people in deep self-reflection and critical conversation about a wide range of human issues. He built bridges and created spaces where people felt simultaneously safe and challenged to participate in the work of making the world a better place by starting with themselves.
Ayana Allen-Handy, Ph. D.
Associate Professor, School of Education
Dr. Ayana Allen-Handy is an Associate Professor of Urban Education in the Department of Policy, Organization, and Leadership in the School of Education at Drexel University. She is also the Founder and Director of The Justice-oriented Youth (JoY) Education Lab. Born and raised in Philadelphia, her 19-year career has been dedicated to advancing justice in all of its forms, particularly education, racial, and social justice. She holds a BA with Honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, an MEd from the University of St. Thomas in Houston, TX, and a PhD in Curriculum & Instruction-Urban Education from Texas A&M University in College Station, TX. Prior to becoming a professor at Drexel University, Dr. Allen-Handy was a first-grade teacher, a literacy specialist, a gifted and talented coordinator, and a high school counselor in Houston, Texas. She was also a Post-Doctoral Fellow at The Urban Education Collaborative at UNC Charlotte.
Dr. Allen-Handy employs anti-racist and asset-based critical pedagogies and perspectives in her teaching, research, and service, recognizing the assets that individuals and communities possess that derive from their lived experiences, and the role that power and privilege have played in maintaining racist and inequitable educational, social, and economic systems and structures. Her work does not focus on challenges and problems, but critical solutions and participatory approaches in an effort to espouse antiracism, equity, agency, and critical capacity building. She works collaboratively with students, teachers, schools, and communities to co-create, implement, and sustain their own solutions to issues that directly impact them through critical Youth and Community-led Participatory Action Research. In her nomination letter for The Dorman Award, her students share:
“Dr. Ayana Allen-Handy’s body of work provides participants, often from marginalized backgrounds, a voice. She helps to build relationships between the community and the academy that truly reflects the research-practitioner model. She also is a role model on how to deconstruct power dynamics of the professor and the student as she encourages participants and students to exercise their authority and agency in the design decisions of research and classrooms. This inspires her students to take the same participant-first approach for classroom curriculum design, theses, dissertations and other research projects. Ultimately, this speaks to her ability to prepare and mentor budding critical social scientists and educators. For example, Dr. Allen-Handy shares publication authorship with not only graduate students, but youth participant-researchers. She is a strong advocate for her students and practices reciprocal leadership. As a result, the many students who express a desire to work with her do so because they hope to bring the same principles of empowering marginalized voices and restructuring power dynamics into their future academic career”.
Dr. Allen-Handy is Principal Investigator/Co-Principal Investigator of several sponsored research projects, having secured $8.7 million of internal and external funding to support community-engaged research including Anti-displacement: The Untapped Potential of University-Community Cooperative Living funded by AmeriCorps, Black Girls STEAMing through Dance funded by the US Department of Education West Philadelphia Promise Neighborhood Grant, The West Philadelphia High School Youth Archivists: A Youth-led Participatory Heritage Project, funded by Drexel University, Engineering Women in Natural Sciences (EngWINS) and Using Culturally Sustaining Learning Environments to Explore Computational Learning and Identity, both funded by the National Science Foundation. She is the co-editor of 3 books: Global Perspectives on Issues and Solutions in Urban Education (Information Age, 2019), Black Female Teachers: Diversifying the United States Teacher Workforce (Emerald, 2017), and Autoethnography as a Lighthouse: Illuminating Race, Research, and the Politics of Schooling (Information Age, 2015). She has also published articles in such journals as The Journal of Negro Education, Urban Education, Urban Review, Teachers College Record, Theory into Practice, Educational Psychology Review, Equity & Excellence in Education, and the International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education.
Dr. Allen-Handy is ultimately a teacher within her heart & soul who hopes to inspire the next generation of multicultural and urban education teachers and leaders. In her daily work and life, she seeks to embody the powerful words of Toni Morrison: “When you get these jobs that you have been so brilliantly trained for, just remember that your real job is that if you are free, you need to free somebody else. If you have some power; then your job is to empower somebody else”. She resides in Philadelphia with her husband Frederick, her son Aiden, and her Pomeranian-Chihuahua Naya.
Katherine E. L. Norris, Ph.D.
Professor, College of Education & Social Work,
West Chester University
For a career in education that spans over 30 years, Dr. Katherine Norris has been an educator for social justice and equity in classrooms ranging from Pre-K all the way through her doctoral students at West Chester University. Her work in education shows a commitment to the advancement of multicultural education in Philadelphia, Coatesville, and West Chester as well as other areas throughout the state of Pennsylvania. Dr. Norris’ work is evidenced through her scholarship, teaching, and service in addition to strong collaborative community partnerships.
As a teacher in Philadelphia for over 18 years, Dr. Norris’ love of literature and understanding of the importance of self-identity, encouraged book clubs and a strong literacy component in all of the classes she taught. Using Black History titles, her students often read about people and topics that many mainstream classes were not exposed to. Dr. Norris fostered an understanding of history and a love of self through reading, drama clubs, and after school dance groups.
Since entering the Department of Early Childhood Education in 2007, and now the Early and Middle Grades Education Department, Dr. Norris has been an advocate for teaching, programming, and support services for students of Color in Education. With Pennsylvania holding the recording for the lowest percentage of Teachers of Color, Dr. Norris has recently secured a small start-up $50 ,000.00 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Education to create a Teacher of Color high school – college pipeline in an effort to Diversify the Teacher Workforce. This project begins with a Why Teach? Teacher of Color Symposium for Philadelphia High School, and this summer, students will then earn college credits while still high school students.
Dr. Katherine Norris has recent publications on multicultural education and social justice in education. She has co-edited a book on Multicultural Parent Partnerships in Education. More recently, Dr. Norris has included international programming in her scholarship and was recently added to the Fulbright Specialist Roster. Dr. Norris is a past board member of PA NAME and is an active member of NAME.