Doris Houston is the recipient of the 2017-2018 David A. Strand Diversity Achievement Award. She was honored at the Founders Day celebration on February 15.

The Strand award recognizes a current Illinois State University faculty or staff member who is instrumental in extraordinary curricular or program activities that assist the University in responding to its commitment to diversity.

A professor in the School of Social Work, Houston has made diversity and inclusion a priority in her teaching, committee work, and service to the University. A driving force behind the work of the recent Climate Assessment Task Force, she serves as the co-director of African American Studies and the director for the Center for Child Welfare and Adoption Studies on campus. Houston participated in the University’s Leadership Initiative and Culturally Responsive Campus Community planning committees, and served on the University Review Committee and the Equity Review Ad Hoc Committee. In 2017, she was named the College of Arts and Sciences Dean’s Administrative Fellow and also received the Outstanding College Service Award for the College of Arts and Sciences.

Illinois State President Emeritus David Strand, who established the award in 1994, said he was impressed when he read about Houston’s numerous accomplishments and achievements. “Dr. Houston’s resume epitomizes the type of activities in which I hoped individuals would engage in order to enhance the significance of diversity at Illinois State University,” he said.

Houston received a doctorate from the University of Illinois’ Human and Community Development Program.