Dr. Christian A. Friend, Ph.D. is the Founder, President and Senior Principal Consultant at C.A. Friend Consulting. Dr. Friend holds a Bachelor's degree in History from the University of Pennsylvania and a Master's degree in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. He also holds a Ph.D. in Human Development and Family Studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Dr. Friend began his career as a public school teacher. He then went on to develop youth programs in low-income housing communities. Upon completion of his doctoral program, Dr. Friend served as a director at the UNC Charlotte Urban Institute and a senior relationship manager at the local United Way. He then held several positions within the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School (CMS) district.
Dr. Friend presenting at conference
While at CMS, Dr. Friend managed the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation funded Achievement Zone Project and the district's Center for Research and Evaluation. He then led the development and implementation of the strategic plan for Project L.I.F.T. and went on to serve as the Executive Director of the district's Office of Accountability. Dr. Friend also served as the Senior Program Officer for Renaissance West Community Initiative and, most recently, as the Director of Research, Evaluation & Assessment for Indianapolis Public Schools. Dr. Friend has published multiple articles in peer-reviewed academic journals and regularly presents at academic and professional conferences. He is esteemed as an expert in planning, evaluation, research, school turnaround and accountability models, non-profit management, community engagement, leadership development, cultural competence, faith-based initiatives and social reforms.
Dr. Friend spends much of his free time on his own development and volunteerism. He is a published poet, an alumnus of the Community Building Initiative's Leadership Development Initiative and the Wildacres Leadership Initiative's William C. Friday Fellowship for Human Relations. He serves on the Board of Directors of Crisis Assistance Ministry and Sugar Creek Charter School. Dr. Friend has also served as adjunct faculty at a number of universities.