Dorothy Winbush Riley
Year Honored: 1994
At the time of the Award, Dorothy Winbush Riley was:Principal
Higgins Elementary School
Dorothy Winbush Riley is a principal coach for the Detroit Public Schools (DPS)/Marygrove College Collaborative, a Title I project that delivers professional services to 23 identified Detroit Public Schools sites. As a principal coach, Riley develops relationships with building principals, using her skills to facilitate team building, increase capacity and learning sustainability, and influence instructors' skills in teaching writing across the curriculum. Riley is the author and editor of more than six books, including a multicultural quotation book, My Soul Looks Back, 'Less I Forget. This book, an updated version of which will be available in July 2007, received glowing reviews from The Washington Post and was voted Reference Book of the Year by the American Library Association. HarperCollins also published Riley's The Complete Kwanzaa, a 400-page reference guide about the holiday. As a former principal of Higgins Elementary School, Riley focused upon programs that incorporated writing and nurtured a love of learning by allowing students an element of entrepreneurial freedom in choosing electives. Riley also implemented an after-school enrichment program that increased parent participation in the school. Many parents received their GED in the adult education classes that were offered at Higgins.