(l-r) Katie Crosby and her sisters Candi Johnson and MeChele Frierson
Katy Crosby has been Toledo’s Chief of Staff for the last two and a half years, where she works with the departments of finance, diversity and inclusion, and human resources. Crosby has spent decades advocating for civil rights and equal opportunities for people of all backgrounds, using her civic leadership skills to work to help end gun violence, bridging the divide between community members and the police force in Dayton (she was the city’s executive director for 12 years). She is also passionate about helping immigrants integrate into their new communities.
Crosby explains that the favorite aspect of her current position is “figuring out how best to make the organization more productive. When employees come to work every day, I want them to feel proud of the workplace they come to, and for them to be proud to provide quality services to our residents.”
Despite a love of numbers and graduating from college with an accounting degree, Crosby was drawn to public administration when she began volunteering years ago for the Dayton Urban League working with at-risk youth. That experience encouraged her to pursue her masters degree in public administration, which led her to become involved in political campaigns and eventually to work for 12 years as the executive director of the Dayton Human Relations Council. Crosby explains, “The mayor of Dayton ended up recommending me to the mayor here in Toledo, and that’s how I got to where I am today.”
She provided us with a glimpse into her life by answering these questions:
When you get a chance to start traveling again, where would you go? I did my ancestry research, and I’m over 50% Nigerian, so I definitely want to go to Nigeria with my family. I’ve also always wanted to go to Barcelona and Amsterdam.
What is the most interesting place you’ve ever been? Cairo, Egypt.
I have always wanted to: Skydive.
What have been your biggest passions over the years? Mentorship. When I have the opportunity to speak on panels and things like that, it brightens my day.
What are your favorite ways to stay physically active? I like to walk, run and bike. I just love being outside.
What do you admire in people? A sense of humor and curiosity.
Your proudest accomplishment: Professionally, the work I did at the Human Relations Council (in Dayton). Personally, my daughter Eryn.
What is something that most people don’t know about you? People seem to be surprised when I tell them I struggle with impostor syndrome.
What inspires you most? My family.
What are your favorite foods? Watermelon and red crab.
Favorite movie: Boomerang.
Favorite book: Right now it’s The Gutsy Girl.
Who do you most admire? In my own life, I admire my mom and my daughter. As for people I’ve never met, I would say LeBron James. I admire his work ethic, but I also admire how he uses his voice.