Within a month of moving to Muncie in the summer of 1997, a Ku Klux Klan rally in New Castle upset Charlene Alexander to the point of not leaving her new home for a weekend.
A native of Trinidad and a graduate of the University of Nebraska at Lincoln’s Counseling Psychology Ph.D. program, Alexander moved to this community to take a job as an assistant professor at Ball State University. She immediately wondered if she had made the right move.
Today, looking back over all the opportunities Muncie has offered her, she is very glad she stayed.
“Muncie has been fantastic for me,” Alexander said. “That weekend in July, 16 years ago, I took at look at my neighborhood and was comforted by the fact that I was living in a neighborhood of teachers. I was also calmed by the fact there were more people against the Klan rally than there were Klan members. I was in a community where I felt supported ... and I knew I was going to stay.”
Ball State is also glad Alexander stuck it out after that Klan rally. She was recently named the associate provost for diversity and the director of the Office of Institutional Diversity, and is now a full professor in the Department of Counseling Psychology.