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Dr. Roger Cleveland, associate professor in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Eastern Kentucky University, was among the keynote speakers at the Governor’s Early Childhood Conference on Friday, June 30.

Cleveland addressed the importance of developing strong leaders in education, especially at the early childhood level.

Widely recognized for his expertise in diversity, cultural competency, instructional equity, closing achievement gaps, learning styles, school culture transformation and school improvement planning, Cleveland was inducted into the Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame in 2014.

Among many other honors, Cleveland is also a recipient of the Individual Champion of Diversity Award from the Urban League of Lexington-Fayette County and the P.G. Peeples Equity and Equity and Excellence Achievement Award from the Fayette County Equity Council.

The Lexington resident is the associate director of the Black Males Working Academy at First Baptist Church of Bracktown, which helps African American males prepare for colleges and careers through classwork, encouragement, supervision and field trips. He has also been actively involved with EKU’s Call Me MISTER Program, which encourages more African American males to enter the teaching profession.

He joined the EKU faculty in 2008.