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Former Kentucky State Interim President Returns to the Hill
Kentucky Ag Connection - 02/19/2021

Former Kentucky State University interim president Dr. William H. Turner is back at the College on the Hill.

Turner served as interim president from 2002 to 2004 and as a distinguished visiting scholar for the Center for Research on the Eradication of Educational Disparities (CREED). Turner recently came back to the Hill to serve as interim director of CREED.

According to his website, Turner "is best-known for his ground-breaking research on African-American communities in Appalachia. As an academic and a consultant, he has studied economic systems and social structures in the urban South and burgeoning Latino communities in the Southwest."

Turner co-edited "Blacks in Appalachia" and essays on Black Appalachians in the "Encyclopedia of Southern Culture" and the "Encyclopedia of Appalachia."

Born in Harlan County, Kentucky, Turner's knowledge of the region was praised by "Roots" author Alex Haley, who said Turner knows more about Black people in the mountains of the South than anyone in the world. Turner served as a research associate to Haley from 1979-1991.

Turner earned a bachelor's in sociology at the University of Kentucky; a master's in sociology at the University of Notre Dame; a Ph.D. in sociology and anthropology at Notre Dame and post-doctoral work at University of Pennsylvania and Duke University.

Turner also served at Winston-Salem State University and Prairie View A&M; was recommended by members of the Kentucky delegation of the U.S. House of Representatives to President Obama to serve as federal co-chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission; was inducted into the Kentucky Civil Rights Hall of Fame was named University of Notre Dame distinguished alumni exemplar in 2006.


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