Foundation Award for Service

Kyler Sherman-Wilkins

Kyler Sherman-Wilkins

Sociology and Anthropology
Reynolds College of Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities

I. Philosophy of Service

I believe that to whom much is given, much is expected. I have been fortunate in life to have had loved ones and mentors who have not only recognized in me talents and skills but have also helped me to nurture and refine said talents and skills. I am inspired by the likes of great scholar-activists like Angela Davis, Cornel West, and W.E.B. DuBois, who masterfully incorporate(d) their teaching and research into their service work. Specifically, these scholar-activists engage(d) in the analysis of race, gender, and class to varying degrees, understanding that progress for all in society is determined by progress of the most marginalized. In all that I do, I strive to make our society a more just and equitable one. This requires systems-level change and collective action. I plan to spend the rest of my professional career toward the goal of creating a better society by working with fellow scholar-activists both within the Springfield community and beyond.

II. Examples of service including service to University, discipline and community

  • CHPA Diversity Council- Chair
  • Provost’s Diversity Council
  • Pre-Medical Committee
  • Provost’s Academic Advising Council


  • Nominations Committee- Midwest Sociological Society
  • Government and Public Affairs Committee- Population Association of America
  • Editorial Board- Journal of Health and Social Behavior
  • Population Reference Bureau U.S. Policy Communications Program Team Leader


  • Missouri Foundation for Health- Member, Board of Directors
  • GLO Center Board of Directors- President of the Board
  • NAACP-Springfield Chapter- Vice President

III. Future Commitment to Service

At 33 years old and as a newly minted Associate Professor, I truly believe that my service work is just getting started. As I continue to grow in my expertise in the science of society and research on health equity combined with my passion for student success and wellbeing, I will commit to continuing my work to strengthen my community and push the field of sociology forward. 

IV. Topics related to service for which you are available for presentations and/or consultations

  • Balancing service work with teaching and research; leveraging teaching and research into service work
  • Communicating scholarly research to policy audiences
  • Centering social justice and systems level change into service work