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Adriana Dawson

Assistant Dean, Center for Workforce & Professional Development (CWPD)

Area of Expertise Economic Development –Business, Community, Workforce, Entrepreneurship, Community & Government Relations, Marketing & Communications, Strategic Planning
(401) 254-5218
“ Don’t be pushed by your problems, be led by your dreams.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson ”

My Story

Ms. Dawson joined Roger Williams University in 2014 and currently serves as the Assistant Dean of Professional Education & Employer Outreach in the School of Continuing Studies on the RWU Providence Campus. In this role she oversees the university’s workforce development efforts, corporate custom education, and personal enrichment activity.

Prior to joining RWU, Ms. Dawson was the State Director for the Rhode Island Small Business Development Center (RISBDC) at Johnson & Wales University. Adriana joined the RISBDC network in August of 2002 and shortly thereafter implemented a nationally recognized Latino Business initiative which resulted in Rhode Island’s first Latino Business Expo, a signature event for the minority business community. The minority outreach model that Ms. Dawson developed became a best practice model for other SBDC’s around the country.

Adriana is very active in her community. She was appointed by Gov. Raimondo as a Commissioner on the RI Commission on Women, is a Board Member of the United Way of Rhode Island, an Advisory Member on the Care New England Community & Population Health Committee, as well other community engagements.

Ms. Dawson holds a Bachelors of Arts in Communication Studies from Northeastern University and a Master of Arts in Communication Management from Emerson College.