Backed by years of professional excellence and an educational background, Leslie K. Hickcox, EdD, most recently served as a program leader and site director for the YMCA public school programs and, currently, as a paraprofessional educator for Portland Public Schools since 2017. Prior to 2017, she has excelled as an agent for the Affordable Care Act and the Oregon Health Plan since 2013. Previously, she was the public health educator for Cowlitz County, Washington, in 2013. During this time, she taught a graduate course in educational service learning at Portland State University between 2009 and 2012. Leading a career in health education, physical education, human studies and communication studies, Dr. Hickcox also taught at Oregon State University, Marylhurst University, the University of Auckland, Rogue Community College, Western Montana College, Northeastern Illinois University and West Liberty University, among others, between 1985 and 2008.
At the start of her career, Dr. Hickcox served as a physical education instructor and the director of intramurals at the State University of New York at Stony Brook from 1981 to 1983. From 1976 to 1977, she was the first women’s athletic director at the College of Marin in California due to the federal Title IX legislation. A graduate of the University of Redlands, Dr. Hickcox earned a Bachelor of Arts in 1973. Soon thereafter, she obtained a Master of Arts in exercise physiology from the University of the Pacific in 1975, further receiving a Master of Education in curriculum and teaching from Columbia University in 1979. She went on to graduate from Oregon State University with a Master of Education in health education in 1987 and an additional Master of Education in guidance and counseling in 1988. She concluded her studies with an EdD from Oregon State University in 1991.
Alongside her primary endeavors, Dr. Hickcox is a board member of the Midway Division Alliance and a member of the Religious Society of Friends. Additionally, she was a representative for the Friends Committee on National Legislation between 2012 and 2015. To remain aware of changes in the field, Dr. Hickcox has affiliated with the American Association of Health Education, the Higher Education R&D Society of Australasia, the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning, the Adult Higher Education Alliance, and the Oregon Association of Health and Physical Education. An exceptional Marquis listee, she has been featured in several editions of Who’s Who in America, Who’s Who Among Human Service Professionals, Who’s Who in Medicine and Healthcare, Who’s Who in the West and Who’s Who in the World.
Dr. Hickcox has always been passionate about people’s health and well-being. About a third into her career, her father fell ill from lymphoma and it showed her how a person living a very seemingly healthy life was subject to cancer. Her father was exposed chemically through his career in chemical engineering. She decided to go into health education because of her commitment to seeing these how decisions affect our lives. The highlight of Dr. Hickcox’s career was when she met David Kolbe, an author who wrote a key book about the 20th century in the late 1980s. She was able to interview him for her dissertation, which was on experiential learning, and she studied how that developed through the 20th century, starting with John Dewy. She wrote about the connection between David Kolbe’s theories and John Dewey. Since then, she has given workshops on experiential learning for 15 years and tried to influence educators about how to use it and make it effective.