Margaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell Named One of Six LSU Rainmakers for Research Excellence and Creative Activity

March 2, 2022

Margaret-Mary Sulentic DowellMargaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell, PhD, named LSU Rainmaker. Photo Credit LSU

BATON ROUGE—Margaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell, PhD, professor and program coordinator for the Educational Leadership PhD program, is one of six LSU faculty members named a Rainmaker for Research and Creative Activity. Rainmakers are faculty members who balance their teaching and research responsibilities while extending the impact of their work to the world beyond academia.

Sulentic Dowell received the Rainmaker Award for Senior Scholar in the Arts, Humanities, Social & Behavioral Sciences category. In partnership with Campus Federal Credit Union, the LSU Office of Research and Economic Development (ORED) awards six Rainmakers each year to faculty who demonstrate outstanding research, scholarship, and creative activity for their respective rank and discipline. The award recognizes both sustained and continuing work, as well as the impact that work has had on faculty members, their department, and their respective academic community.

“Dr. Sulentic Dowell’s research is essential to the very fabric of our communities and society at large,” said LSU College of Human Sciences & Education Dean Roland Mitchell. “She is a dedicated teacher and mentor, a consummate professional who believes in the power of partnerships and community programs that benefit LSU’s broad and diverse constituency. She is prolific scholar and a true Rainmaker.”

“A literacy luminary, Dr. Margaret-Mary Sulentic Dowell’s career is not only marked by her impressive scholarly contributions, but also by her student scholars who are now making real impact as school and education leaders in our state and beyond,” said School of Education Director Neil Mathews. “The School of Education is proud to have Dr. Sulentic Dowell recognized for her leadership, innovation, and dedication to her field and her students.”

Sulentic Dowell is the Cecil "Pete" Taylor Endowed Professor of Literacy, Leadership, and Urban Education at Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Director of the LSU Writing Project and Coordinator of the PhD program in Educational Leadership in the LSU School of Education where she has developed a pathway to literacy leadership. Her research agenda focuses broadly on literacy issues in urban settings including access to opportunity, literacy leadership, and pedagogical literacy practices that empower students as learners. 

“I am both humbled and honored to join the ranks of such prestigious colleagues. To be nominated by a peer and to be selected by campus peers is edifying. This is a treasured recognition for me, and I am so grateful,” said Sulentic Dowell.

Sulentic Dowell is a career educator, a National Board Certified Teacher, and fierce public education advocate. In her 15 years at LSU-Baton Rouge, Sulentic Dowell has published widely, and she has been nationally recognized for scholarship and teaching; she was awarded the “Light Up for Literacy” Award, Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (2019). Her most recent book (2022) is Productivity and Publishing: Writing Processes for New Scholars and Researchers, published by SAGE.

Rainmaker criteria include but are not limited to the following: publication in a high-impact journal(s); a highly cited work; external awards; invited presentations at national and international meetings; high journal publication productivity; critically acclaimed book publication(s), performance(s), exhibit(s) or theatrical production(s); high grant productivity and for more senior candidates, outstanding citation records and high-impact invited presentations at national and international meetings.

Learn more about the LSU ORED Rainmakers.


About SOE
The LSU School of Education (SOE) offers graduate and undergraduate programs in Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Leadership and Research, and Counseling, including two completely online master’s programs. SOE offers a range of professional and academic degree programs that focus on preparing students for careers in education, research, policy formation and implementation, as well as program oversight. The School’s mission is to prepare P-12 educational professionals to be leaders, practitioners, and scholars knowledgeable in contemporary educational issues. SOE is part of the College of Human Sciences & Education.  Visit the School of Education at

About CHSE
The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The college is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Kinesiology, the School of Leadership & Human Resource Development, the School of Library & Information Science, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs, 18 graduate programs, and 7 online graduate degree and/or certificate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 1,120 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is committed to improving quality of life across the lifespan. Visit the College of Human Sciences & Education at



Mary P. Woods
Director of Communications