Dr. Leonie Brown is an educator who received her graduate degrees from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto (OISE/UT). She earned her doctorate in Leadership, Higher and Adult Education (LHAE) in 2012, where she specialized in social justice, and critical race, while teaching English Composition, and Initial Teacher Education at the University of Toronto, St. George Campus.
Her doctoral research is about the value of Cultural Wealth found in diverse communities, and the positive impact it can have on diverse students and mainstream educators in higher education, as well as for community leaders and stakeholders. The research revealed that there is a hidden wealth of knowledge and values that are found in the experiential background of many cultural communities, in general and specifically Black communities. For example, the unique experiences of Black students cause them to constantly feel undervalued in educational institutions while their wealth and abilities continue to go undetected or uncultivated. Cultural Wealth theory uncovers these strengths, and aims to empower racialized students with this new knowledge. In addition, the goal of Dr. Brown’s work is to “re-teach” educators by helping them reframe their faulty historical perceptions of Black communities that persist in social institutions and are maintained by universal dominant frameworks. Her research article was published in a peer-reviewed journal called the, Journal of Critical Race Inquiry, Queens University in 2019.
Dr. Brown was a professor/lecturer at the University of Toronto for eight years (2011- 2019), where she specialized in teaching, English writing and composition academic advising, research, coaching students. Her areas of specialization include: Equity, Access, Inclusion and Cultural Wealth, Initial Teacher training, and Critical Pedagogy. She is skilled in designing culturally relevant programs, curriculum, training and support primarily for educational institutions.
Dr. Brown was awarded a Teaching Award of Excellence in 2005, and 2006, and presented her work in the International Conference on Education, Economy and Society (2008), Paris, France. Her work on Cultural wealth was accepted at the same conference in 2018, as well as Many conferences at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE/T). She created a report called “Talking Heads: Space to Vent and Invent Solutions for Black students on Campus,” in 2019 for the university of Toronto. The evidence of success saw, 14, and the 15 recommendations accepted and implemented into the five-year strategic plan, headed by the university president, Dr. Wisdom Tetty.
Dr. L.B. Educational Consulting Inc, was created in 2017, to further and expand her teachings, and training and to offer consultation to various organizations who require a better understanding of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) especially as it relates to Anti-Black Racism, but through the user-friendly lens of a Cultural Wealth Strategy. The business now operates under my business re-named BrownTree Education Consulting, as of 2020.
Dr. Leonie Brown remains committed to serving her community through her dedication, passion, and valuable lived experience of her own Cultural Wealth knowledge, and continues to advocate for social justice as it relates to educating the underserved, in education, business, and community arenas. It is her quest to make the educational experiences for racialized and culturally diverse students much better than the early experiences of her own. As well as in her desire to create culturally relevant training and curriculum for educators and stakeholders in higher education and the community across Canada and other international borders.
Professional Skills and Accomplishments:
June 2017 – Present:
September 2012- 2017 – Higher Education Teaching:
Ph.D., Higher Education, Policy, Social Justice, Critical Race, University of Toronto, 2012
MA., Higher Education, Theory and Policy, University of Toronto, 2004
HBA., Sociology (Major), Psychology, (Min). Cum laude. Alabama A&M University (HBCU), 1993.
Phone: 647- 921-3683