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Walter Allen


Professor Walter Allen, Ph.D. is the Allen Murray Cartter Professor of Higher Education and Distinguished Professor of Education, Sociology, and African American Studies. His research focuses on educational inequality, social institutions, and social policy. Professor Allen has extensive experience in institutional review and assessments and has served as external team leader for Quality Assurance reviews of higher education institutions. He has also served as advisor and consultant to academic, government, business, and the courts on issues of diversity and equity. ​Dr. Allen earned Ph.D. and M.A. degrees in Sociology from the University of Chicago and the B.A. degree at Beloit College (WI). He grew up in Kansas City, Missouri under Jim Crow segregation.

​Professor Allen’s over 200 publications include the following books: Mitigating Inequality: Research, Policy and Practice in an Era of Massification and Stratification (2015); Higher Education in As the World Turns: Global Higher Education (2012);Towards a Brighter Tomorrow: College Barriers, Hopes and Plans of Black, Latino/a and Asian American Students in California (2009); Till Victory is Won: The African American Struggle for Higher Education in California (2009; Higher Education in a Global Society: Achieving Diversity, Equity and Excellence (2006); Enacting Diverse Learning Environments: Improving the Climate for Racial/Ethnic Diversity in Higher Education (1999); College in Black and White: African American Students in Predominantly White and Historically Black Public Universities (1991); and The Colorline and the Quality of Life in America (1989).

His published articles appear in the: British J. of Sociology, Harvard Educational Review, American Educational Research J., International J. Qualitative Studies in Education, J. of Negro Education, Rutgers Race & Law Review, J. General Internal Medicine, J. Higher Education,

Presentations before professional associations include: International Sociology Association; American Educational Research Association; American Sociological Association; Association for Study of Higher Education; American Public Health Association; Population Association of America; American Statistical Association; America Association for Advancement of Science, American Psychological Association, Latin American Studies Association and Law Schools Admissions Council.

Media interviews include: The Oprah Winfrey Show; McNeil-Lehrer Reports; CBS Sixty Minutes; NBC Evening News with Tom Brokaw, British Broadcasting Corporation, GLOBO (Brazil), Jet Magazine, Le Nouvel Observateur, Chicago Tribune, Black Enterprise, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and U.S. News and World Reports.

Professor Allen is consultant to courts, communities, business and government. He was expert witness in key affirmative action and higher education desegregation court cases: Coalition for Excellence and Equity in Maryland Higher Education v. Maryland; Grutter and Gratz v. U Michigan; Castenada v. UC Bd. of Regents; US and Ayers v. Fordice; US and Knight v. Alabama. He has testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Changing US Population and Labor Force and the United Nations Committee for Elimination of Racial Discrimination (Geneva). He has also been a consultant to universities in the US, South America, Africa, China, the West Indies, Russia and Europe.

Professor Allen’s honors include: Fulbright Scholar Awards to Zimbabwe, Moldova, Russia and Israel; UCLA and University of Michigan Teaching Awards; Distinguished career awards from the American Educational Research Association, the American Sociological Association, the Association of Black Sociologists and the Association for Study of Higher Education. He is honored in Marquis “Who’s Who in the World” (2015) and “Outstanding Intellectuals of the 21st Century” (2014). He has also received civic awards from the Los Angeles County Supervisors, the Mayor of Los Angeles and the Mayor of Kansas City, MO.

Walter Allen is married to Attorney Cathy R. Daniels (deceased) and is the proud father of two daughters and two sons, as well a doting grandfather to eight grandchildren – five boys and three girls.

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