Dr. Woodard joined the School of Urban Studies at the University of Washington – Tacoma, as the assistant professor, race and urbanism in Autumn 2021. He earned his Ph.D. in Planning, Governance and Globalization, in conjunction with a certificate in urban computing at Virginia (Tech) Polytechnic Institute and State University. During this time, he served as a National Science Foundation research trainee. His dissertation entitled “Frames of Blackness in the Racialized Palimpsest City: Chicago, Illinois and Johannesburg, South Africa,” explored the ways in which historical racializations of urban place remain present and inform and frame contemporary digital and non-digital interactions between Black individuals, communities and institutions in Chicago, Illinois and Johannesburg, South Africa.
Davon holds both a MS in economics and policy analysis, as well as an MBA centering on predictive analysis from DePaul University (Chicago, IL), a certificate in nonprofit strategic planning from Stanford University, and a BS in Interdisciplinary Public Policy and Psychology from Michigan State University (MSU). His research interests include critical urban theory and emancipatory planning; urban analytics, data science, and open data; globalized cities and cities in the global context; and, mixed-methods, including traditional mixed methods, qualitative mixed methods, digital ethnography, social network analysis.
Professionally, prior to academic he spent over a decade in nonprofit and government management and fundraising in Washington, DC and Chicago, Illinois. Serving in multiple resource development and strategic partnership roles in various mission-driven organizations spanning community-based health, performing arts, parks and recreation, and LGBTQ+ community development. Outside of his professional work he remains committed to combating issues of food and housing insecurity, and racial and gender based injustices, locally and globally.