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Meet Professor Dilafruz Williams
Meet Professor Dilafruz Williams

Dilafruz Williams, PhD, is professor of Leadership for Sustainability Education in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy, Graduate School of Education, at Portland State University. She served as department chair from 2004 to 2007.

Dr. Williams is co-founder of the Leadership for Sustainability Education program and of the Learning Gardens Laboratory. She also co-founded the Sunnyside K-8 Environmental School in Portland Public School District. These successful initiatives address ecological and cultural foundations of K-12 and higher education with strong community-university-school partnerships. She was elected city-wide and served on the Portland Public School Board 2003-2011.

She is the recipient of several awards and honors including: the Ehrlich Award for Faculty Service-Learning; Fulbright Senior Scholar; 100 District Leaders for Civic Engagement and Service-Learning Network, by the Education Commission of the States National Center for Learning and Citizenship; and with her colleagues, the Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter Award for strong partnerships.

She is frequently invited to give seminars, workshops, and talks both nationally and internationally.

Dr. Williams is co-author of Learning Gardens and Sustainability Education: Bringing Life to Schools and Schools to Life (Routledge), and co-editor of Ecological Education in Action: On Weaving Education, Culture, and the Environment (SUNY). She has authored over 50 chapters, journal articles, and curriculum resource guides and has given over 100 invited lectures, symposia, and/or conference papers. With graduate degrees from Bombay, Syracuse, and Harvard Universities in the sciences, public administration, and philosophy of education, Dr. Williams' areas of expertise are:

  • Sustainability Education; Environmental Education
    • Learning Gardens: Curriculum Design; Research; STEM
  • Community-University-Schools Strategic Partnerships
  • Civic Engagement/Service Learning; Professional Development
  • K-12 Public Policy

Dilafruz Williams, PhD
Portland State University
Graduate School of Education
Educational Leadership and Policy
PO Box 751
1900 SW 4th Avenue
Room: 240L
Portland, OR 97207-0751
Phone: 503-25-4676
Fax: 503-725-3200