LaShawnda Lindsay-Dennis

Research Scientist

Ph.D., Georgia State University
Projects: Black Girls Matter: A Social Media Campaign \ Ananse Design Essentials, LLC

A voice for the muted, an advocate for the overlooked, and a champion for the ignored, Lindsay-Dennis has vigorously, and with deep devotion, accepted the call to enhance the well-being and lives of Black girls globally

LaShawnda Lindsay-Dennis, Ph.D., is a research scientist at the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW). Over the past decade, her research has created a platform that sheds light on the social determinants, racial injustices, and cultural biases that burden the progression and viability of Black girls and women. She has mentored Black girls, implemented sustainable programs and initiatives for Black girls, and most recently founded Black Girls Matter: A Social Media Campaign. Prior to joining WCW, Lindsay-Dennis served as the interim chairperson and an associate professor of education at Paine College in Augusta, GA.

Lindsay-Dennis also uses her passion and creativity to enhance the wellbeing of girls and women by designing and creating her own line of jewelry and accessories, Ananse Design Essentials, LLC. This entrepreneurial endeavor and decade of research on/about/for black girls has promoted the creation of a new initiative, Black Girls Create (BGR). BGR is an informal STEM learning program that integrates fashion design and engineering to increase Black girls’ interest and value in STEM education and careers.



Current Work


M.Ed., Counselor Education, Clinical Mental Health Counseling, Augusta University, December 2015

Ph.D., Educational Psychology, Georgia State University, May 2010

Graduate Certificate, Women’s Studies, Georgia State University, May 2009

M.Ed., Educational Psychology, Howard University, May 2003

B.S., Psychology, Morris Brown College, May 2001

Awards & Recognition

  • The Augusta Metro Chamber of Commerce and Augusta Magazine’s 2015 Top 10 in 10 Young Professionals to Watch (2015)
  • Paine College Evelyn Berry Teacher of the Year (2012-2013)
  • Class of 2012 ZERO TO THREE's Leaders for the 21st Century Fellowship Program
  • Southern Regional Education Board Dissertation Fellowships (2008-2009)
  • Fulbright-Hays Group Project Abroad Fellowship to Ghana (Summer 2008)
  • Adolescent and Youth Development SIG. of the American Educational Research Association Graduate Travel Scholarship (March 2008)
  • Sisters of the Academy Institute Outstanding Achievement Recognition (Winter 2008 Newsletter)
  • College of Education, Urban Graduate Research Collaborative Fellowship (2006-2009)
  • Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc Educational Advancement Foundation Graduate Scholarship (2003-2004)

Funding Sources

Principal Investigator-Broadening Participation Research Project: Understanding Barriers to STEM Education for African American Women,” (National Science Foundation). $408,874; 10/1/2013-8/31/2016

Project P.U.S.H. 2012 Summer Institute. The Community Foundation for the Savannah River Area, Unrestricted Grant. $15,000; 12/1/2011-11/30/2012.

Principal Investigator-The Effectiveness of Project P.U.S.H. (Propelling Underserved Students into Higher education: A Culturally Responsive Mentoring Project. Faculty Student Research Program. Paine College $5,700; 2/1/2010-2/1/2011.

Selected Publications

Cummings, L. & Lindsay-Dennis, L. (in press). A sister had to show me: Sisterhood and womanhood for Black female adolescents in gender and race matched mentoring relationships. Negro Educational Review.

Lindsay-Dennis, L. (2015). Black Feminist-Womanist research paradigm: Toward a culturally relevant research model focused on African American girls. Journal of Black Studies, 46(5), 506-520.

Lindsay-Dennis, L. & Cummings, L. (2014). The ABCs of doing gender: Culturally situated non-cognitive factors of African American girls. In D. Davis-Maye; A. D. Yarber &T. E. Perry (Eds.), What the Village Gave Me Conceptualizations of Womanhood. Lanham, MD: University Press of America.

Lindsay-Dennis, L., Cummings, L., & McClendon, S.C. (2011). Mentors' reflections on developing a culturally responsive mentoring initiative for urban African American girls. Black Women, Gender & Families: A Black Women's Studies Journal. 5(2), 66-92.

Lindsay-Dennis, L. (2010). African American girls’ school experience in context: Implications for Teacher Education programs. Journal of the Georgia Association of Teacher Educators: GATEways to Teacher Education, 2(1), 26-35.

Lindsay, L. A, Irving, M. A, Tanner, T. & Underdue, D. (2008). In the loop: An examination of the effectiveness of looping for African American Students. The National Journal of Urban Education & Practice 1(4), 334-346.