A Portrait of Black Leadership during Racial School Segregation

  • Patricia Randolph Leigh Iowa State University
  • Beverlyn Lundy Allen Iowa State University
Keywords: Segregation, Desegregation, Black Leadership, Leadership, Race, Educational Administration, Urban Education


The purpose of this paper is to paint a portrait of an African American public school administrator, capturing the essence of his leadership style and educational philosophy during extremely challenging circumstances. This portrait reveals the many creative ways that this administrator handled discipline, secured resources, and ultimately impacted the lives of many students in his district. This research is important in light of the fact that schools across the nation are returning to segregation and an increase in Black superintendents is concomitant with this increase in predominately Black urban school districts. Much can be learned from examining this portrait as administrators find themselves presiding over districts with historically underserved children from low-income families.

Author Biographies

Patricia Randolph Leigh, Iowa State University

Curriculum & Instruction

Associate Professor

Beverlyn Lundy Allen, Iowa State University


Associate Professor