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Dr. Keith Curry to receive the 2024 Diverse Champions Award

Contact: Ralph Newell
Phone: 703.385.2419 
Email: [email protected] 

Dr. Keith Curry to receive the 2024 Diverse Champions Award

FAIRFAX, Va. — Diverse: Issues In Higher Education is pleased to announce that Dr. Keith Curry will be this year’s recipient of the Diverse Champions Award.

Curry is the president and CEO of the Compton College and Compton Community College District (CCCD). Compton College is the 114th California Community College, achieving initial accreditation status on June 7, 2017. Curry is responsible for overseeing all departments and functions of Compton College and Compton District and serves as secretary for the CCCD Board of Trustees. He brings an abundance of energy and innovative ideas to Compton College, along with a wealth of experience as a postsecondary education administrator.

Curry firmly believes that every person should be able to access an affordable college education. For many years, he has tirelessly advocated and lobbied at California’s state capital for policy and resources related to increased student equity, as well as assistance with basic needs for community college students.

In June 2022, Curry helped secure a state-funded $80 million grant to construct future student housing at Compton College. To address food insecurity, Compton College offers a food pantry on campus, a monthly mobile food pantry, a weekly Certified Farmers’ Market with students receiving $20 in vouchers to spend at the market, and one free meal per day for enrolled students at the on-campus Everytable Café.Curry is the recipient of several leadership awards and has presented at many conferences, workshops, ceremonies, and symposia. His areas of expertise include preparing students for higher education, guided pathways, bridging the digital divide, establishing partnerships among postsecondary institutions, and ensuring access for all students.

Curry earned his doctorate in educational leadership from the University of California, Irvine, and a bachelor’s degree in American studies from the University of California, Santa Cruz.

About this award:

The Diverse Champions Award recognizes higher education leaders who have shown unwavering commitment to equal opportunity and access for all, particularly at the community college level.

The award was created by Diverse: Issues In Higher Education in 2012 upon the retirement of the inaugural Diverse Champions Award winner, Dr. John E. Roueche, as director of the Community College Leadership Program (CCLP) at the University of Texas at Austin. Of the more than 500 CCLP graduates produced during his 40-plus year tenure at CCLP, more than 60% are women and people of color.

The award is given to individuals who have made similarly extraordinary contributions to the world of higher education. Learn more about past winners here, including the 2023 recipients of the award, Dr. Steven R. Gonzales and Dr. Alfredo de los Santos, Jr. (posthumously).

This year’s Diverse Champions Award will be presented to Curry during the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) Annual, its yearly meeting to be held April 5-9 [JJ3] in Louisville, Kentucky.

The March 28 edition of Diverse will contain a tribute to his leadership.


 For  four decades, Diverse: Issues In Higher Education has been America’s premier source of timely news, provocative commentary, insightful interviews and in-depth special reports on diversity in higher education. Savvy individuals who appreciate the crucial and ever-changing role that higher education plays in the lives of student and professionals, and their families and communities, make reading Diverse a regular habit.


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