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Meet the Staff

Renee Thomas

Renee Thomas

Phone: (765) 494-3091
Email: rathomas@purdue.edu

Renee A. Thomas currently serves as Director of the Purdue University Black Cultural Center. She has twenty years of experience in higher education administration with expertise in program development, student services, community engagement and fundraising. Thomas is committed to promoting a campus climate that ensures the inclusion of diverse students, faculty, and staff in all aspects of the university. During her tenure, Thomas has been known for her ability to nurture, support and mentor students. She plays an active role in enhancing student success and retention. She is service oriented and encourages global citizenship and academic achievement. [Read more]

Bill Caise

Bill Caise

Assistant Director
Phone: (765) 494-4630
Email: wpcaise@purdue.edu

Bill Caise, a native of Kentucky, is from a small town just outside of Lexington. Caise did his undergraduate work at the University of Kentucky and received his MFA from the University of Iowa. While at the University of Iowa, Caise appeared in the world premiere productions of Karin Coonrod’s Everything that Rises Must Converge (an adaptation of Flannery O’Connor short stories), Robert Alexander’s The Last Orbit of Billy Mars as well as the Hansberry award winning production of Levy ‘Lee’ Simon’s The Bow Wow Club. Some of Caise’s favorite roles have been Cutler in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Boy Willie in The Piano Lesson, Nick Bottom in A Midsummer’s Night Dream, as well as Chasuble in The Importance of Being Earnest. [Read more]

Jamillah Gabriel

Jamillah R. Gabriel

Phone: (765) 494-3093
Email: jgabrie@purdue.edu

A California native, Jamillah R. Gabriel holds an Associate in Arts in English from Cerritos College, Bachelor of Arts in Black Studies and Journalism from California State University Long Beach, and a Master of Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. She is currently pursuing a second master’s degree in museum studies. [Read more]

Juanita Crider

Juanita Crider

Program Advisor 
Phone: (765) 494-3097
Email: jcrider@purdue.edu

A native of Baltimore, Juanita Crider came to the Black Cultural Center from Muncie, Ind., where she had lived for 25 years. Crider earned her bachelor’s degree in history from Ball State University and is currently working on her master’s degree in history, with a special focus on college student volunteerism during the 1964 Freedom Summer, also known as the Mississippi Freedom Project. [Read more]

Tony Gass

Tony Gass, Ph.D.

Program and Facility Manager
Phone: (765) 494-3094
Email: tagass@purdue.edu

Dr. Thomas Anthony ‘Tony’ Gass is a native of the Washington, D.C. metro area. Dr. Gass came to the Black Cultural Center from Columbus, Ohio after earning his Ph.D. in History from Ohio State University this past May. A proud alum of two historically Black universities, Dr. Gass received a Bachelor of Science degree in History from Bowie State University in Bowie, Maryland, and a Master of Arts degree in History from Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland. [Read more]

Lisa Sulteimer

Lisa Sultemeier

Administrative Assistant
Phone: (765) 494-3092
Email: lsulteme@purdue.edu

Prior to her position at the Black Cultural Center, Lisa Sultemeier served in key leadership roles in the areas of finance, academics, administration and student affairs at a private college in Jackson, Miss. She also served as a committee member for marketing and recruiting. [Read more]