Cheryl D. Jordan, Ph.D. is a 2011 graduate of the PHD Program in Leadership and Change at Antioch University.

Dissertation Committee

  • Philomena Essed, Ph.D., Committee Chair
  • Laurien Alexandre, Ph.D., Committee Member
  • Lize Booysen, DBL, Committee Member
  • Stella Nkomo, Ph.D., External Reader


Blacks, women, executives, African Americans, race, gender, racism, corporations, business, resistance, biography, management, leadership, organizational culture, diversity, inclusion, career mobility, focus groups

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For this research, I explored contemporary resistance strategies that Black women executives in the corporate world use to oppose negative behaviors by others associated with their race and gender. The dissertation reviews scholarship about the major role the convergence of race and gender play in the day-to-day existence of Black women. Historically, negative images and beliefs have influenced the treatment of Black women in society. These same thoughts and images affect Black women executives in today’s workplace. African-American women continue to see limited advancement to senior levels within the corporate organization, even though diversity programs abound. As leaders in the corporation jump higher hurdles to achieve executive level positions, Black women continue to be invisible in corporations. Using biographical inquiry, I explored resistance by Black women corporate executives to negative images. I identified specific acts and motifs of resistance in the workplace through questions designed to elicit career life histories through their personal stories. A final purpose was to connect the worlds of the corporate and the academic by sharing the career life history motifs from the interviews with Black women professors whose scholarly pursuits and interests are in the area of critical race and gender studies. I wanted to hear their suggestions for the practical application of this information toward further development and transference of knowledge in this area. The electronic version of this dissertation is accessible at the OhioLINK ETD Center,