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Dr. Eddie R. Cole

Dr. Eddie R. Cole

Best-Selling Author, The Campus Color Line & Higher Education Thought Leader

Dr. Eddie R. Cole

Best-Selling Author, The Campus Color Line & Higher Education Thought Leader


Dr. Eddie R. Cole is Associate Professor of Higher Education and Organizational Change at UCLA. His research focuses on college presidents’ historic role in shaping racial policies and practices both inside and outside of the educational sphere. His book The Campus Color Line: College Presidents and the Struggle for Black Freedom - called “groundbreaking”, “essential”, and “required reading” by reviewers - was described by New York Times–bestselling author Ibram X. Kendi as “a stunning and ambitious origins story… embedded with breath-taking narratives recovered from meticulous research.”

Eddie’s scholarship and public writing has been featured in The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and Chronicle of Higher Education, and he has appeared as an expert commentator on BBC World News and C-Span BookTV. In 2021 and 2022, he was named by Education Week as one of “the top university-based scholars in the U.S. who did the most last year to shape educational practice and policy.” He received the 2018 Early Career Award from the Association for the Study of Higher Education and in 2017 was recognized by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation as a professor poised “to play a significant role in shaping American higher education.” Also notable is his selection as a 2015 National Academy of Education/Spencer Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship, one of the most prestigious awards for scholars working in critical areas of education research.

Eddie is frequently invited to participate in Dean’s Distinguished Speaker Series and is in high demand as a speaker for both campus and municipal MLK Day and Black History Month celebrations. An example of him addressing the community of students and faculty at Princeton University is available here.

Speaker Videos

The Campus Color Line | Princeton University

The Role of Faculty at a Community-Engaged, Empowered University | University of Illinois

The Urgency of Action Now | AFAAM 2021 | Opening Keynote

Speech Topics

About The Campus Color Line

Dr. Eddie R. Cole enlightens audiences by highlighting thoughtful solutions to the complex and nuanced challenges that have plagued society for generations. He brings a new perspective on organizational change and leadership within a historical context, and can illuminate how leaders can leverage power systems to enhance  structural equity or perpetuate disenfranchisement.

With a focus on leadership, race, and culture through the prism of higher education, Dr. Cole routinely speaks about:

  • Power and Systems of Power
  • Education and Society
  • HBCU History
  • Leadership and Race
  • Organizational Change