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Dr. Gary Houchens and Dr. Andrea Abrams to discuss critical race theory

UPDATE 3-23-22: This event has been cancelled due to one of the participants not being able to attend. We hope to reschedule this event at a future date.

Morehead State University's Department of History, Philosophy, Politics, Global Studies and Legal Studies will host a "Forum on Critical Race Theory and the Future of Education" at 6 p.m. Thursday, March 24, in the Adron Doran University Center (ADUC) Theater.  

The discussion features Dr. Andrea Abrams, vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion at Centre College, and Dr. Gary Houchens, professor of educational administration at Western Kentucky University.   

The forum features a discussion on critical race theory and education, including the Kentucky General Assembly's proposed Senate Bill 138 and House Bill 487, which could establish social studies curricula for K-12 classrooms and impact how race, gender and LGBTQ issues are discussed in Kentucky classrooms.    

Dr. Andrea Abrams is the author of "God and Blackness: Race, Gender and Identity in a Middle-Class Afrocentric Church." Her research focuses on racial and gender issues in the South. Abrams has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and Anthropology from Agnes Scott College. She earned a Master of Arts in Anthropology, a graduate certificate in women's studies and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Emory University.   

Dr. Gary Houchens is a former middle school teacher, school principal and K-12 district-level administrator who now serves as professor of educational administration at Western Kentucky University. He serves on the board of directors for EdChoice Kentucky and the Board of Scholars for the Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions. Houchens is a senior fellow with the Pegasus Institute and a policy advisor for Commonwealth Educational Opportunities. Houchens served on the Kentucky Board of Education from 2016-19, where he was chair of the Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment Committee.   

"Both Dr. Abrams and Dr. Houchens are well respected in their fields by their peers. Both have extensive knowledge of the various ways academics utilize critical race theory in their research and teaching," said Dr. Ben Fitzpatrick, assistant professor of history. "Overall, Dr. Abrams and Dr. Houchens will provide nuanced and informed opinions in an imperative debate about the future of education in Kentucky."   

For more information on programs in the Department of History, Philosophy, Politics, Global Studies and Legal Studies, visit, email or call 606-783-2655.