Faculty News

Catherine Marshall receives national award from Politics of Education Association

Catherine Marshall, professor of educational leadership and policy at the School of Education, received the 2009 Stephen K. Bailey Award from the Politics of Education Association at the association’s 40th anniversary celebration in San Diego, Calif., April 13, 2009.

The award, presented every three years, recognizes an outstanding scholar who has “shaped the intellectual and research agenda of the field.” Named for a Syracuse University political scholar, it seeks to recognize theorists in the field of the politics of education.

In presenting the award, Professor James Cibulka, chair of the selection committee, said, “We believe that Catherine Marshall has provided intellectual leadership on a range of issues. She made early and important contributions to the study of state education policymaking. She has promulgated and made advancements in qualitative research methods. Also, her research on gender issues, and the interpretation of cultural dimensions of school politics and policy formation, has had an important and salutary impact on our field.”

Cibulka further noted Marshall’s persistence in expanding the research agenda of the Politics of Education Association (PEA). “For decades, she has worked to include the politics of race, class and gender on the PEA agenda,” he said. “She voiced concerns about what was not on our research agenda early and often. She made the case for adjusting our view of what counts as legitimate and significant research in the field—and she made these contributions in her own scholarship.”

In addition, Cibulka commended Marshall for articulating the relationship between politics and responsible educational leadership in her own research and advocacy, for mentoring new scholars in the field and for serving in numerous leadership roles in the Politics of Education Association, including serving as its president in 1990-1992.

A member of the School of Education’s faculty since 1991, Marshall has received national recognition for her contributions to several professional areas. In addition to this newest honor for her work in the politics of education, her other major recognitions include the following:

  • For her extraordinary contributions to the field of educational administration, she received the Roald F. Campbell Lifetime Achievement Award from the University Council for Educational Administration in 2008.
  • Her pioneering work in social justice was reflected when a Special Interest Group on Leadership for Social Justice was created in 2006 in the American Educational Research Association (AERA). As a precursor to this event, Marshall obtained a Ford Foundation grant in 2001 to support her work in galvanizing a host of scholars at many institutions to begin to formulate a national agenda for social justice.
  • In recognition of her scholarship and activism in the field of gender equity, she received the Willystine Goodsell Award in 2003 from the American Educational Research Association.
  • In her other area of expertise—qualitative research—Marshall is currently working on a fifth edition of a widely-used text.

“Catherine's body of scholarly work spans three decades and five major research interests including the politics of education, leadership for social justice, gender equity issues, educational administration and qualitative research,” said Kathleen Brown, associate professor and chair of Educational Leadership. “A common thread throughout is Catherine's unyielding and unapologetic passion and commitment to first carefully describing and then critically dismantling oppressive practices. She is a pioneer in our field and a real champion for equality!”

Marshall is the author or editor of 11 books, 85 book chapters and journal articles, and innumerable invited talks, symposia and conference presentations that address significant issues. She has mentored and taught numerous doctoral students, including service as the longtime director of the School of Education’s Smallwood Fellowship Program, which is devoted to recruiting talented minority females for doctoral study and eventually into high-level educational leadership positions.

Before coming to Carolina, she held faculty positions at Vanderbilt University and the University of Pennsylvania.

The Politics of Education Association is a Special Interest Group of AERA. Its purpose, according to its Web site, is to foster and support “the conduct, dissemination, discussion, and application of research on the political functions and outcomes of education—pre-K through higher education.”