Marlese Durr, Ph.D., professor of sociology at Wright State University, has been named the recipient of the 2021 Doris Wilkinson Faculty Leadership Award from the Society for the Study of Social Problems.
The society is an interdisciplinary community of scholars, practitioners, advocates and students dedicated to promoting greater social justice through social research.
Durr was selected for her wide-ranging expertise, scholarship and contributions to the field of sociology. The annual award goes to an outstanding faculty member who has exercised an extensive leadership role within the society, other professional societies and within the larger community.
Doris Wilkinson, a sociologist from Lexington, Kentucky, paved the way for racial integration at the University of Kentucky as the first African American to graduate from the university in 1958 as an undergraduate student.
The award named after her is presented to scholars who address and bring deeper public understanding to social issues of contemporary public importance, advance social understanding of leadership for change within the larger society and propose courses of action to effect that change.
Durr’s areas of specialization include work and occupations, race and labor markets, African Americans and social networks, entrepreneurship and inner-city neighborhoods, and stressful life events and African American women.
She served as president of the Society for the Study of Social Problems in 2014–2015 and the Sociologists for Women in Society in 2004–2005, and chair of publications for Gender & Society.
Durr earned her Ph.D. in sociology from the University at Albany – State University of New York.