Murff named to prestigious Ball State board


staff report

Dr. Dennisha Murff, principal of Westlake Elementary, has accepted a position on the Black Alumni Constituent Society (BACS) board of Ball State University. Dr. Murff is one of three Ball State graduates recently named to the board.

Dr. Murff has served as Westlake’s principal since 2007. Among her numerous recent accomplishments are creating a clear vision for the school through active collaboration with stakeholders, developing and implementing Westlake’s school improvement plan, and coordinating professional development with the school’s instructional coach throughout the school year with a clear focus on school improvement plan goals. Dr. Murff also developed the response-to-instruction plan for district implementation connected to remote learning due to COVID19.

As an advocate for student services, Dr. Murff collaborated with the district’s assistant superintendent of elementary education on enrollment redistricting to assist with balancing enrollment at the school level. Dr. Murff has facilitated professional development for staff members throughout the school year on various topics, including culturally responsive pedagogy, equity, and social justice. She also facilitated racial affinity groups during district equity team training and implemented a grammar “pilot” for students in grades K-6 to support culturally and linguistically diverse populations.

This year, Dr. Murff was named District 7 Elementary Principal of the Year by the Indiana Association of School Principals. She was also named an inaugural member of the Purdue University Educational Leadership and Policy Studies (PU-ELPS) Advisory Board. A year earlier she was named to the Leaders of Color 2020 District 7 Elementary Principal of the Year in Education Coalition and received MSD Wayne’s MG Raby Distinguished Service Legacy Award and the African American Excellence in Education Award—Indiana Black Expo. She is a member of the National Association of Elementary School Principals, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and Delta Sigma Theta Sorority.

The BACS is an official organization within the Ball State University Alumni Association (BSUAA).  The BACS has a seat on the BSUAA Alumni Council, which governs the organization. Dr. Teresa Jeter, BS’95, serves as that representative as well as president of the Black Alumni Constituent Society.