Cecile graduated from the University of Nottingham in the 1980s. Following a year as a Research Assistant for Social Services in Derby, she secured an Economic and Social Research Council scholarship to undertake a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) at the University of Keele.
Cecile has worked at the universities of Sheffield and Leicester. In 1993 she joined Nottingham Trent University – and was awarded a personal chair in Sociology in 1999 and became the first black, female Professor in the East Midlands. She left Nottingham Trent in 2012 and is currently Visiting Fellow, Centre for Advanced Studies/ Honorary Associate Professor School of Sociology and Social Work and Professorial Fellow, Institute of Mental Health at the University of Nottingham.
Throughout her academic career she has undertaken research relating to the Black and Minority Ethnic community, and the employment and education of young black people.
Both as a student, and an employee in Nottingham, Cecile has been actively engaged with the local voluntary sector. She is currently the Chair of Nottingham Equal, a Trustee of the Positive Training and Recruitment Agency in ACDA (PATRA) and Co-Chair of the Nottinghamshire Police and Crime Commissioner’s Black and Ethnic Minority Steering Group.
As the BME Advocate for the Voluntary Sector on the One Nottingham Board, Cecile endeavours to ensure that the voice of the BME voluntary sector is not only heard, but its contribution to the life of the city is recognised.
Within Nottingham there is underrepresentation of Black women in senior positions across all sectors. As result of this, Cecile passionately supports the need for concerted efforts to be made to address the underrepresentation and retention of black women across all sectors.