Charlene Moore Hayes joined the Antioch University Board of Governors in October 2020. She brings years of experience in human resources and has joined both the Compensation Committee and the Governance Committee of the Board.
Charlene was interviewed for Common Thread in March.
Q: What about Antioch University do you find most compelling and intriguing?
There are a couple of things about Antioch University that I find compelling and intriguing. First is Antioch’s long-term commitment to focusing on social justice and its social justice-centered values before social justice was in vogue.
Second is the strength of its convictions, its agility and its ability to adapt. I first became aware of Antioch in the late 1970s when Antioch had a law school in Washington, D.C. I recall then the focus on social justice. That was hugely significant to me as a recent college graduate who had grown up in the Deep South. The University later closed the Law School and then the College in Yellow Springs. Both were courageous and perhaps also necessary adaptations to keep the graduate programs going strong.
Antioch keeps moving forward, making tough decisions as the environment shifts all around. Through it all, the University maintains its focus, staying true to its mission and social justice-centered values.
Q: I am sure you have many responsibilities currently in your life. What has drawn you to serve on the Board of Governors of Antioch University?
The times have finally caught up to Antioch. We have the opportunity to make a huge impact domestically and internationally because social justice issues are front and center globally. Antioch is a leader in that regard and has a lot to offer as it educates and prepares leaders to lean into the world’s challenges with a social justice lens.
Q: What contributions do you hope to bring as a Board member leading Antioch University?
I have spent most of my career in higher education—over 30 years. I want to use those decades of learning to help Antioch build strategies for its growth and future development in a way that honors the age-old traditions of higher education while charting the course for excellence in the next generation.
Q: What do you hope to learn as a Board member about leading universities in today’s complicated environment?
I have served on many non-profit boards, as I do today. I have also served five universities in executive roles. The Antioch Board of Governors is my first university board membership. I hope to learn a great deal more about governance in higher education, generally. I also expect to learn more about Antioch’s specific challenges as we look forward to navigating through the turbulence that is characteristic of our world today. I hope to learn more about how I might contribute to the overall growth and health of a national institution that is positioned to grow its core mission as it prepares social justice-centered leaders globally.
Q: If I were to do this interview with you five years from now, what would you like to be able to say about Antioch University? About your service on the Board?
I would love to say that with my help, Antioch has prospered and grown responsibly while educating some of the world’s greatest leaders who are contributing to a more just world.
Q: What would you like our readers to know about you that they might not know from your brief bio statement?
I am a wife, mother, grandmother, sister, and aunt. I am a lover of the arts; and my heart is in Mississippi, although I don’t think I can ever live there again.
Laurien Alexandre, PhD is Special Advisor to the Chancellor and Provost of Antioch University’s Graduate School of Leadership and Change. Since its founding in 1852, Antioch University has stayed at the forefront of social justice, inclusion, and equality for all people, regardless of ethnicity, gender, creed, orientation, or ability.