A NC native, Brenda attended the University of NC at Chapel Hill where she was Phi Beta Kappa and earned a B.A. in English. After working as a social worker, she pursued advanced degrees at North Carolina State University (NCSCU), earning an M.Ed. in Adult and Community Education and a Ph.D. in psychology with an emphasis in vocational psychology and research.
Her professional experience includes teaching at community colleges and NCSU, serving in various capacities supporting institutional research and planning, and managing a major division as administrative vice president for the North Carolina Community College System which oversees 58 local community colleges. Since retiring, she has had several consulting jobs related to accreditation and institutional effectiveness. She completed a 3-year term in 2015 as the public representative on the NC Board of Trustees for the Southern Association of Accreditation Commission on Colleges.
Brenda joined the Wake League of Women Voters after retiring in 2001 and served on its board before moving to Chapel Hill where she joined the Orange, Durham, Chatham League (ODC). She served on the LWVNC board (2005-2009) and was vice president for three years . From 2011-2013 she was a Shur Fellow with LWVUS. In 2012 she became leader of her local League and president from 2013-2015. LWVODC received the award for the largest percentage increase in membership for large Leagues at the 2014 LWVUS convention. She received the Gertrude Wiel Award at the 2015 LWVNC convention for “leadership, dedication, vision, courage, and commitment to LWVNC.”