Johnson Leach, Dr. Oriana

Professor of Practice
Moore School of Education
PhD, Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Educational Psychology, North Carolina State
MS, Science in Education, St.John's University
BFA in Film & Television Production, New York University


Dr. Oriana Johnson Leach is an accomplished research scholar and former educator who has devoted the last decade of her life to creating equitable education spaces through research and practice. A former program evaluator at The William & Ida Friday Institute for Educational Innovation and certified classroom teacher, Dr. Johnson Leach has conducted qualitative and mixed methods research centered on the P-20 schooling experiences of BIPOC students and the experiences of African American faculty, staff, and administrators in the higher education workplace using Critical Race Theory, intersectionality, and identity frameworks. 

She has published book chapters, peer-reviewed journal articles, and presented her research at several national conferences, including the annual conferences for the American Education Research Association, American Psychological Association, and the National Association for Gifted Children. Dr. Johnson Leach attended New York University where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Film and Television Production from Tisch School of the Arts and, later, pursued a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction with a specialization in Educational Psychology from North Carolina State University.

 Following the conferral of her Ph.D., she served as a project manager on several National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, and Institute of Education Sciences research grants, directed the academic year programs at Duke TIP, and led assessment and evaluation efforts at Duke University. Dr. Johnson Leach currently serves at a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Consultant and Data Scientist at The Diversity Movement in Raleigh. Among her many activities outside of work, Dr. Johnson Leach sits on the Durham Public Schools Foundation’s Equity and Innovation Committee, owns a consulting firm geared towards advancing educational equity, and is co-founder of a 501(c)(3) program for gifted and talented underserved students. Dr. Johnson Leach resides in Durham with her husband and children.

Oriana Johnson