The 2018 annual international conference of the Community Development Society in Detroit, Michigan, USA, was an opportunity to celebrate the past 49 years of scholarly and practical advances across the spectrum of community development, the friendships forged and sustained, and the tangible changes made in the many communities of which we are a part. The conference served as both a reflection on the challenges and achievements we have experienced over the years and an opportunity to envision what our continued success will look like over the next 50 years. Kyle Patrick (KP) Williams, who began his term as CDS Vice President for Operations at the end of the conference, is especially excited about the future work of CDS members and the impact it will have on the communities where we build, create, educate, engage, live, serve, work, and worship.
KP joined CDS in 2013 and presented his master's research on poverty in Kentucky at the annual international conference in Charleston, South Carolina, USA. In the time since KP has served as a member of a variety of committees, conference session moderator, reviewer of conference and CD practice proposals, and served on the board of directors (2016-2018). As the Vice President for Operations, KP will work closely with other officers, directors, and CDS members to be a steward of policies and procedures that ensure the continued success of the organization. Some of the initiatives KP will work on over the next year include progress toward the strategic vision and goals of CDS, operational and financial functions of committees, budget planning in consultation with the Treasurer, and chair the site selection committee in preparation of upcoming conferences.
Soon after the 2018 Conference, KP relocated to Ames, Iowa, and joined the Iowa State University Leadership Studies program faculty. KP is currently teaching LAS 151 “Dean’s Leadership Seminar,” LD ST 122 “Leading With Purpose,” and LD ST 322 “Leadership Styles and Strategies in a Diverse Society.” KP also serves as the advisor for the Leadership Studies Club. KP is also currently a doctoral candidate in the Donna Ford Attallah College of Educational Studies at Chapman University. KP's dissertation research is an arts-based study that uses narrative inquiry and creative nonfiction to story the leadership identity development of millennial gay men. KP’s other research interests include community leadership, inter- and intragenerational leadership, and LGBTQIA+ leadership.
KP earned a bachelor’s degree in Community Communications and Leadership Development at the University of Kentucky (2010) and a master’s degree in Leadership, Public Policy, and Social Issues (2012) from the Union Institute & University in Cincinnati, OH. From 2010-2012, KP served as an AmeriCorps VISTA member and Leader with the Campus Compact projects in South Carolina and Kentucky, respectively. After graduate school and national service, KP served as a Visiting Service-Learning Tutor at Lingnan University in Tuen Mun, Hong Kong; Senior Program Coordinator for Academic Community Engagement at Tulane University’s Center for Public Service; Graduate Assistant for Civic Engagement Initiatives at Chapman University; and instructor in the Anteater Leadership Academy at University of California, Irvine.