Duran Clark, Delia
Mill Cities Leadership Institute
I describe myself as a Black-Latina, mother to four amazing girls, Sasha, Mara, Elena and Sofia. Being a mother is where my leadership begins. For me, leadership is personal and begins at home. I was born in the Dominican Republic and have lived in the United States since age 12. I attended Lawrence High School, and I am a proud alumnus of Northern Essex Community College where I received my first college degree in Early Childhood Education, of many more to come. I continued on to complete my Bachelor of Arts in ECE degree at Lesley College. I received a Master’s in Social Work from Boston College, and a second masters from Worcester State College in School Leadership Administration. After graduate school, I returned to live in Dominican Republic in search of an identity that without awareness, I had left behind. I attended college there and received a post-graduate degree in School Leadership and Administration. I returned “home” looking for a sense of belonging only to realize that I belong where my affections are. I had to leave the USA to understand that Lawrence, MA was home and based on my experiences, it was impossible to claim only one identity. I finally understood that my relationships define my life. My life is no longer defined by my ethnicity, my nationality or where I live. Nevertheless, I understand that these are essential threads that weave the quilt of my life and enrich my human experience, personally and professionally. I am every place that I have ever lived or visit and every person that I have encountered. I have made of Lawrence, MA my emotional home. My heart beats for this city. I am a seasoned educator, and a passionate and committed community leader. I bring a wealth of difference experiences as faculty at Merrimack College, a field advisor at Boston College, and a former program coordinator at Northern Essex Community College. My past career also includes positions at Lawrence Family Development Charter School, Lawrence High School, and Notre Dame Christo Rey High School, where I became the School Principal. Presently, I am honored to say that I am the new Executive Director at Mill Cities Leadership Institute, serving both cities of Lawrence and Lowell. Personally, one of my biggest leadership accomplishments is being the founder of Nosotras: Una Fuerza Natural and Amigas, two women’s empowerment groups to honor women’s voices and experiences. We come together to give of ourselves, to form lasting bonds of friendship, love and support in a spiritual, loving, supportive, and socially responsible space. We celebrate life through stories, experiences, workshops, art, poetry, music…us.
It is a pleasure to write and reflect on these personal and professional experiences that make up the woman I am today.