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Cheryl Brown Henderson

Cheryl Brown HendersonKansas Historical Foundation
Board of Directors
Elected to board: 1995

Cheryl Brown Henderson lives in Mission. She grew up in the Topeka community, one of three daughters of the late Reverend Oliver L. Brown. She earned a bachelor’s degree in elementary education, minor in mathematics from Baker University, and a master’s degree in guidance and counseling from Emporia State University.  

In 1988 she founded the Brown Foundation, which provided scholarships to more than 100 minority students; presented awards to local, state and national leaders; established libraries for children in low income communities; developed curriculum on Brown for educators across the country; created traveling exhibits and a website about Brown; and sponsored programs on diversity and educational issues for thousands of people. In 1990, under her leadership, the Foundation successfully worked with the U.S. Congress to establish the Brown v. Board of Education National Park in Topeka, which opened in 2004.

Handerson has extensive background in education, business and civic leadership, having served on and chaired various local, state and national boards. In addition, she has nearly two decades of experience in political advocacy, public policy implementation and federal legislative development.

She is the recipient of many awards and recognition for work in education and community service; presentations at numerous conferences and conventions; and for her work with Congress and the National Park Service to preserve sites associated with the landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling of 1954. She has authored numerous articles and essays.

She has served on many boards including the University of Kansas Libraries Advocacy, Washburn University Education Department Advisory Council, Literacy Kansas City and University of Missouri at Kansas City Women’s Center, and the Kansas City Public Library Foundation. In 2001 she traveled to South Africa on behalf of the Trust for Historic Preservation.

Henderson was first elected to the Kansas Historical Foundation Board of Directors in 1995.