Charles Vert Willie is the Charles William Eliot Professor of Education, Emeritus. He is a sociologist whose areas of research include desegregation, higher education, public health, race relations, urban community problems, and family life.
Before coming to HGSE, he was chairman of the Department of Sociology and vice president of student affairs at Syracuse University. He was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to the President's Commission on Mental Health and has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Social Science Research Council. He also has served as vice president of the American Sociological Association and president of the Eastern Sociological Society. Willie has served as a consultant, expert witness, and court-appointed master in major school desegregation cases in larger cities such as Boston, Hartford, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Kansas City, Little Rock, Milwaukee, San Jose, Seattle, and St. Louis; and in other municipalities such as St. Lucie County and Lee County, Florida, and Somerville, Cambridge, and Brockton, Massachusetts.
Willie is the author or editor of over 100 articles and 30 books on issues of race, gender, socioeconomic status, religion, education, urban communities, and family relations. Willie identifies himself as an applied sociologist who is concerned with solving social problems.