Dr. Keshia Jackson Gilliam is the Director of the online Master in Management (MiM) Professional Leadership Program (PLP) and the Doctorate in Professional Leadership Program at Converse University. Her teaching pedagogy focuses on engaging dialogue that infuses real-world perspectives on motivation, personal/professional development, employee relations, team collaboration, organization partnerships, community networking, and authentic leadership.

Between 2017 and 2021, Dr. Gilliam served as the Human Resources Director in the following capacities: Title IX Coordinator, HIPAA Compliance Officer, Benefits Administrator, Retirement Plan Sponsor, Employee Relations Manager, Unity in Diversity Coordinator, Risk Management Representative, President’s Cabinet and Direct Report for Converse University. Dr. Gilliam has more than 30 years of professional human resources, leadership, and management experience while serving in various industries, including hospitality, non-profit, retail, corporate sales, higher education, and the district office for K-12. She is a member of the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM), CUPA-HR, Spartanburg (SHRA), and the Greenville Human Resource Association (GHRA). Although she has transitioned to a faculty role at Converse, she still serves as Converse University’s Human Resources Consultant.

Dr. Gilliam is a first-generation college student. She began her education at Spartanburg Technical College, where she double majored and earned an Associate Degree in Business – Hospitality, Marketing. She later transferred to Converse University, earning her Bachelor of Arts – Human Relations in 2005. She is a proud Red Devil and Converse II Alumna! However, her education did not stop there, despite industry requirements for a bachelor’s degree only; her personal goal allowed her to complete a Master’s in Human Resource Development and a Doctorate in Organizational Leadership. She advocates higher education and encourages anyone interested in pursuing their educational dreams to have perseverance, and it will come to fruition!

Interesting and Fun Facts

Although she was born in New Brunswick, New Jersey, she is a Spartanburg native and Spartanburg High School alumna. She is married to Steven Gilliam of SLGTruckingLLC and has one daughter (Lindsay) and two bonus sons (Stephan and Steven). She enjoys spending time with family as it is of the utmost importance.

Additionally, from 2002-2004 she worked at Converse University in admissions and was the cheerleading coach.

Dr. Keshia Jackson Gilliam’s passion is to lead and serve authentically. As an alumna, she sees the value of connecting the community with the mission and vision of Converse. She believes every opportunity is an assignment from God, and she is grateful. According to her: similar to the development of a butterfly, growth stages are designed to help us transition to our full potential; we just have to learn to give ourselves the grace to do so!


  • Doctorate in Organizational Leadership
  • Master’s in Human Resource Development
  • BA in Human Relations - Converse College
  • AA in Business (Hospitality); AA in Business (Marketing) - Spartanburg Technical College