Gwendolyn L. Kirtley
Gwendolyn L. Kirtley was installed as the Great Lakes Regional Director of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated® in July 2022 at the 70th biennial international convention in Orlando, Florida. She will execute her term under the dynamic leadership of Danette Anthony Reed, the sorority’s International President & CEO. As Regional Director, she is responsible for leading over 7,000 accomplished, educated, and service-oriented women who commit daily to enhancing the lives of their respective communities. With a vision for a “Greater” Great Lakes Region, Ms. Kirtley has galvanized members from the great states of Michigan, Ohio, Western Pennsylvania, Western New York, and West Virginia to grow “Greater Together” in service and sisterhood.
Ms. Kirtley was initiated as a charter member of Nu Upsilon Chapter at Capital University in 1981. With more than 40 years of committed service to her beloved sisterhood, she is both a Silver Star and a Life Member. She is the epitome of an Alpha Kappa Alpha woman on a mission to serve all mankind. She has leveraged her professional and business acumen at every level of the organization with a focus on raising the next generation of the sorority’s leaders, prioritizing mentorship, collaboration, and inclusion. As a member of the sorority’s first graduate chapter, Alpha Omega, she has held numerous roles including: President; First Vice President; Second Vice President; Chairman of Membership, Program, and Standards Committees; and Chairman of the Alpha Omega Foundation, Incorporated®. At the regional level, she has served as the Northern Ohio/Western Pennsylvania Cluster Coordinator, Chairman of the President’s Council, Protocol Chairman, and Co-Chairman of the 87th Great Lakes Regional Conference. Internationally, as a member of the Leadership Development Committee, she co-designed the curriculum and has facilitated training for hundreds of members who have earned various sorority certifications. She has presented nearly one hundred sorority workshops and has served as Founders’ Day keynote speaker for celebrations in the region. Ms. Kirtley is a recipient of numerous awards and accolades of distinction, notably the Great Lakes Region Margaret Davis Bowen Graduate Basileus Award and the Pamela L. Redden Outstanding Silver Star Award. Professionally, Gwendolyn Kirtley retired with over 36 years of experience with State Farm Insurance as a Claims Service Support Supervisor and Claims & Litigation
Specialists. As an active member of the State Farm Weather & Catastrophe Team, the largest catastrophe team and fleet in the insurance industry, Ms. Kirtley directed disaster relief and provided aid amid the impact of Hurricanes Katrina, Sandy, Harvey, Irma, Maria, and Andrew. She is a former board member of the American Red Cross, Berea Family & Children Services, Garfield Heights Community Center, and Ivy Plaza Management Corporation. She is currently an active member of her local NAACP chapter, and ambassador with the local United Way and the American Red Cross organizations. Gwendolyn Kirtley received her Bachelor of Arts in Art Therapy from Capital University.
She is a devoted mother of two adult children, Nichole A. Kirtley, who is also a member of the sorority and Carl Marsalis Kirtley, both of whom are HBCU graduates, Howard University and Clark Atlanta University, respectively. She is engaged to Mr. Paul Redd. Her fiancé, children, and church family are treasured blessings and constant reminders of her favorite scripture, that to whom much is given, much is required.