Umoja Welcomes New Executive Director
Nzingha Dugas named Umoja Community Education Foundation Statewide Executive Director Seasoned program executive manager brings leadership skills to Executive Director role
Sacramento, California – May 9, 2019 – The Umoja Community Education Foundation announced today the hiring of Nzingha Dugas as the organization’s Executive Director. Mrs. Dugas takes the helm as the Foundation continues to expand its program capacity and operations after solidifying a line item in the California state budget. Mrs. Dugas will lead the Foundation’s office staff and will oversee and direct all operations.
“We are so excited to have an Executive Director in place who is both qualified for the role and committed to student success,” said Umoja Board President Dr. Teresa Aldredge. She has an extensive background and understanding of working successfully with our target student population within public institutions on strategic plans for recruitment, retention and matriculation. She brings more than two decades of program assessment, development, and fundraising that will provide the results driven outcomes I know that Umoja is hoping for. “This is exactly the type of leader our Umoja Community needs to help us continue to formalize the strategic direction of our Foundation.”
Prior to the Umoja appointment, Mrs. Dugas was the founding director of the district-wide African American Female Excellence Initiative for the Oakland Unified School District. She was charged with planning and directing a highly visible and proactive campaign to accelerate academic achievement and to address the disparities in educational and social outcomes for African American girls and young women. Mrs. Dugas also served as the Director of the African American Student Development Office (AASD) for the University of California, Berkeley for over 11 years. She is a Fulbright Scholar and currently holds the position of Co-Chair for the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity (NCORE) in Higher Education Committee where she has served for the past seven years. Mrs. Dugas is also an adjunct professor of African American Studies at Contra Costa, Merritt, and Laney Colleges.
Mrs. Dugas states, “My life's work has been embedded deeply in making a way for our students where they might not see a way, and to help them recognize and access the excellence that already exists within them. It is my belief that the vision, mission, and practices of Umoja are in direct alignment with the work I have been doing for over two decades and it is my hope that we would have the opportunity to work together.”
Mrs. Dugas will begin her employment as Executive Director of Umoja Community Education Foundation effective June 9, 2019.
Umoja, (a Kiswahili word meaning unity) is a community and critical resource dedicated to enhancing the cultural and educational experiences of African American and other students. Umoja actively serves and promotes student success for all students through a curriculum and pedagogy responsive to the legacy of the African and African American Diasporas.
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