Ellicia Lanier named first Clark-Fox Policy Institute Scholar-in-Residence

Clark-Fox Policy Institute Scholar-in-Residence Ellicia Lanier

The Clark-Fox Policy Institute has named Ellicia Lanier as its inaugural Scholar-in-Residence. Lanier is the founding Executive Director of Urban Sprouts Child Development Center and serves on the steering committee of the Gateway Early Childhood Alliance to reimagine St. Louis’ early childcare system. With over 20 years of experience in early childhood policy and practice, Lanier’s leadership as Scholar-in-Residence will elevate the importance of a thriving, high-quality early childhood education system for St. Louis.

Clark-Fox Policy Institute Director Gary Parker stated, “Throughout the years, Ellicia’s remarkable work and achievements have earned my admiration and taught me extensively about the needs of our region’s children. I am thrilled that she will be contributing her lived experience, knowledge, and insight. Her input is vital, offering a crucial community perspective that is too frequently undervalued.”

Lanier distinguished herself as a leader in social-emotional development education, serving as an Adjunct Instructor at St. Louis Community College and extending early childhood education courses to the St. Louis community, in partnership with the Boeing Company. She is a skilled community convener, partnering with Youth in Need to secure a generous Head Start grant to serve low- to moderate-income families. She also co-founded Ready by Five, which successfully campaigned for a ballot initiative to raise over $2 million annually for early childhood funding in the City of St. Louis.

As Scholar-in-Residence, Lanier will:

  • Dialogue with Brown School students and faculty, enriching our academic discourse and inspiring future generations of scholars and practitioners,
  • Share her experiences and insights with the wider Clark-Fox Policy Institute community, and
  • Strengthen the institute’s endeavors to improve child well-being across the region.

During her tenure as Scholar-in-Residence, Lanier looks forward to bringing together local voices and the Brown School community around a shared vision of social justice through early childhood education. She says, “I am grateful to carry the voice of those who I am proximate to and are in community with. I look forward to the conversations that lead us to a deeper understanding of our children and the world they exist in and the one that have the potential to live in.”

Lanier’s appointment will run from January to June 2024.