Paulette Isaac-Savage

E. Paulette Isaac-Savage

Hall of Fame Class of 2019

E. Paulette Isaac-Savage is best known for her trailblazing scholarship on adult education and the adult learning experiences of African Americans within the African American church. Her research, publications, and presentations contribute to an important stream of adult education research on race, ethnicity, and social justice by bringing the voices of the marginalized to the center of focus.

Isaac-Savage began her professional career after graduating from the adult education program at the University of Georgia. She was appointed as an assistant professor of adult education at the University of Missouri-St. Louis (UMSL) in 1999 and became an associate professor in 2005. In 2014, she became the first African American faculty member to be promoted to full professor in the UMSL College of Education.

Her research began with an examination of African Americans’ motivations for participation in church-based education. She has investigated barriers to participation and the church’s contribution to education, health, and career development of congregants.

She has taught a variety of adult education courses, including developing new courses in adult education, such as History of Adult Education, Multicultural Issues in Adult Education, Mentoring in Adult Education, Policy Issues, and Spirituality in Adult Education.

In collaboration with colleagues, she developed an online curriculum for the adult education program at UMSL and increased the number of African Americans admitted to the doctoral program. She served as the adult education program coordinator at UMSL from 2010-14, Chair of the Educational Leadership and Policy Studies Division from 2006-12, and as associate provost of UMSL from 2014-17.

Isaac-Savage served as co-editor of Adult Learning, the practitioner-oriented journal of the American Association of Adult and Continuing Education (AAACE), from 2005-09. She was also co-editor of the proceedings for the Adult Education Research Conference in 2008 and 2013. She has served as an editorial board member and reviewer for multiple publications in the field, including Adult Learning, Adult Education Quarterly, Education and Urban Society,andPAACE Journal of Lifelong Learning. She was a board member on the Executive Committee of the Commission of Professor of Adult Education in 2004-06 and again in 2010-12, and she served as a member of the Adult Education Research Conference Steering Committee in 2016-18.

She serves as the executive board secretary for AAACE and is a member of the American Association of Blacks in Higher Education and the Religious Education Association. She is chair/president of the Adult Basic Education Foundation and an advisory board member of the Adult Education and Literacy Center, both of St. Louis, Missouri. She is also a member of the United Way’s Charmaine Chapman Society and a lifetime member of the Missouri Association for Adult, Continuing, and Community Education.