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By Shanika P. Carter


Photo by Doug D. Sims

Keshia Dickason wears many hats, including those of Wife, Mother, Author, Commissioner, and Director. The recent “buzz” is that Dickason, who currently serves on the Road Commission of Kalamazoo County, has even bigger political aspirations she is considering for the very near future. She neither confirms nor denies the claims, but Dickason’s leadership background thus far has prepared her for whatever new hat she decides to wear next.

Dickason, the first woman of color to ever serve on the Road Commission of Kalamazoo County, says that her experience has been a true learning one where change has played an important role. “If you truly want to understand something, try to change it,” she says, adding that even in an environment where things may not be considered “wrong,” this doesn’t mean change is not needed to improve other areas.

Appointed to the Road Commission in February 2021 by the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners, Dickason serves as part of a governed board of five commissioners who represent the public at large. The Road Commission she serves on as the first woman of color was founded back in 1909, but this is just another addition to her list of “firsts.”

Raised in both Muskegon and Grand Rapids, Dickason went to Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo as a first-generation student. After two years, she transferred to Cornerstone University where she completed and earned her bachelor’s degree in business management. She is proud to have been a part of Kalamazoo County for over the past 28 years.

Continuing her higher education studying health care administration on a master’s level track with an emphasis in higher education, Dickason’s background includes serving in many health and education-related nonprofit organizations and committees. These include serving as the Chair of the Woman’s Health and Wellness Initiative, Pink Goes Red for Health, and Bike Friendly Kalamazoo.

The founder of the nonprofit Big Red Heart Scholarship Fund, Dickason, and her organization sponsor an annual 5K Run that provides scholarships to high school students in Muskegon with an interest in pursuing the study of medicine. This pursuit is something that Dickason has a connection to, as her daughter, Arianna, was recently white-coated at Bastyr University in San Diego for medical school. Dickason and her husband Aaron Sr. are also the proud parents of Omar, an honors English teacher in Kalamazoo, and Aaron II, a senior at Michigan State University.

With her leadership expertise, which includes operating as Owner and CEO of the Home Health Care Staffing Agency, a vendor for the State of Michigan, Dickason is taking her networking and community development skills even further as she continues serving her community on a larger level. “I give back to the community because it is my job to network, seek knowledge, and pass what I know on to others for their greater good.”

Dickason serves as a board member and leader for several organizations, including WMED IRB, the American Heart Association, and Run Kalamazoo. She is also active with organizations that promote being active and staying healthy; these include Run This Town-Kalamazoo, the S.T.A.R.S. running group, and Sisters Taking Action Reversing Statistics. 

“I want to continue my political aspirations in any capacity that will allow me to be the face and voice of those that were not invited to the table, ” explains Dickason. “I want to serve in roles that help me make positive impacts for the people in the community.”

Her memberships and participation with Kids Moving and Thriving, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Jack and Jill of America, and the American Heart Association further impact those in the community.

“I can’t move every mountain, but I can move small rocks and pave the way rock by rock.”

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