Dr. Cheryl Green Named to Crain's Black Notables List
South Side Chicago native honored for 30 years of education leadership
University Park, IL – Governors State University President Cheryl Green was recently named by Crain’s Chicago Business a 2021 Notable Black Leader for her leadership and impact in the African American community as an educator, mentor, and influencer.
Following the 2020 murder of George Floyd and the nation’s reckoning over systemic racism, members of the Black community found themselves in new positions, and individuals in this 2021 cohort were suddenly in positions where they could discuss experiences with racism in order to make a difference for future generations, said Crain’s explaining the impetus for the list.
“For the first time, they say they've had an opportunity to share their experiences with racism and how they overcame obstacles. …Many have taken on new roles leading new or expanded diversity initiatives as companies vow to improve their practices in recruiting, hiring and retaining talent from diverse backgrounds. And these leaders have redoubled efforts to boost the next generation through nonprofits that help young people succeed in school and prepare for a career. These leaders are seizing the moment.”
The individuals featured were chosen based on nominations that demonstrated they made a difference in contributing to the Black community in any number of ways. Green, who hails from Chicago’s South Side, brings more than 30 years of professional experience in higher education to her role as the sixth president. Her tenure began during the COVID-19 pandemic in July of 2020. She created COVID-19 testing sites on campus, utilizing the expertise of nursing school faculty and students. As racial tensions escalated alongside COVID cases, Dr. Green connected with students and listened as they voiced fears and concerns, opening talks to the establishment of a Social Justice Initiative.
And through the tireless efforts of Green, Governors State University now houses the Illinois Black Hall of Fame, which selected as its first inductee the late Dr. Timuel Black, a historian, activist, husband, and leader in Illinois.
Dr. Green and other Black Notable Leaders were featured in Crain’s Chicago Business, as well as on its LinkedIn social media platform. She and other leaders recognized by Crain’s Chicago Business throughout the year were recently listed in the 2022 Crain’s Book.
“Working to address socio-economic inequities through education is my honor and privilege. I am grateful to those individuals and organizations, including Crain’s Chicago Business, who recognize my contributions and inspire me to continue,’’ Dr. Green said.