Denise Pearson serves as vice president of academic affairs and equity initiatives. As a member of the senior leadership team, she strives to be a leading voice to advance states’ and SHEEO’s academic affairs and equity agendas. Collaborating with chief academic officers at state higher education agencies and other education policy related entities, Denise produces research, analyses, recommendations, and reporting on relevant policy areas, including but not limited to student learning, educator preparation, minority serving institutions, accreditation, and student protections. She is currently the principal investigator for Project Pipeline Repair: Restoring Minority Male Participation and Persistence in Educator Preparation Programs, a multiyear, W.K. Kellogg funded collaboration with state higher education policy leaders and educator preparation faculty at five HBCUs (www.sheeo.org/ppr). Denise is also a principal coordinator of SHEEO’s annual Higher Education Policy Conference. Prior to joining SHEEO, Pearson served in a variety of academic leadership capacities including professor of education, assistant provost for faculty affairs, dean of education, and associate academic dean. She earned her Ph.D. in education supervision and administration from Marquette University, M.A. in conflict resolution from the University of Denver, and M.S. in education administration from Concordia University Wisconsin.
In her free time, Denise enjoys exploring vegan cuisine and mindful living practices. She also enjoys spending time with her precious granddaughter, Kori.