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Educational Administration, Leadership, and Research

Dr. Nicholas Brake
Dr. Nicholas Brake
- Director of Ed.D. Program, Executive-in-Residence and Faculty Member


  • B.A. in history from Northern Kentucky University
  • M.A. in history from Western Kentucky University
  • Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy, University of Louisville
  • Post-Doctoral Study – Educational Policy at Johns Hopkins University and Community Planning and Development at Rutgers University

Research Interests: His research interests stem from his work in both education and economic development.  As a student of communities, and cities in particular, he is exploring the impact of education and social capital on community vitality. Additionally, he has researched educational policy issues focusing on the secondary to postsecondary transition, and the history and philosophy of American education, especially origins, structure and reform of the American high school.

Professional Background: Prior to joining the faculty at WKU, Dr. Brake served as the superintendent of the Owensboro Independent School District.  Under his leadership, the district was recognized as one of the 25 most innovative districts in the US by the American Association of School Administrators.    Dr. Brake has held administrative leadership positions at the high school, community college, and school district levels.  He spent seven years in the public administrative sector as President and CEO of the Greater Owensboro Economic Development Corporation. 

Personal Background: His wife Candance is President of the Greater Owensboro Chamber of Commerce, they have two children, Nicholas, a student at Western Kentucky University and Anna Caroline, a student at Georgetown University in Washington DC.

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 Last Modified 9/11/18