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Year of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

MALS: Leadership

Directing Professor

Dr. Lori Joseph


In spite of systematic injustices Black women experience regularly, it is imperative that Black girls see and are taught that there is no limit to what they can become or where they can achieve that goal. The leaders in their homes, their churches, and their communities are pivotal to the development of this inner strength and acceptance as they progress and become leaders in their industries of choice. I will answer three questions through this research:

  • How does race affect the career development and advancement of Black women in leadership in the City of Roanoke?
  • What role, if any, does community engagement play in the career development and upward advancement of Black women in leadership in the City of Roanoke?
  • Does the current racial segregation affect the evolution of Black women rising in leadership in the City of Roanoke?

I contend this foundation is crucial as they grow in a world that tells them they are less than their White counterparts. I argue that this stride with the upward progressive movement of life to building this foundation starts in the home and in the community. As I explore theories, characteristics, and development of Black women in leadership in the Roanoke Valley through interviews and research, I dive deep into the bosom of my community of Black women leaders