About Dr. Tara L. Fikes

Although she was born in Washington, DC, the daughter of Durham natives Willie Fikes Jr. and Reva Leach Fikes, Tara was raised and nurtured in Durham from the age of three. She was educated in the Durham public school system and graduated from Hillside High School. She loves the Durham community and is an active community volunteer.



  • Bachelor of Arts, Political Science/Public Administration,
    N.C. Central University
  • Masters of Public Affairs, N.C. State University
  • Doctorate of Public Administration,
    University of Southern California

      Specialized Training:

  • North Carolina Institute for Political Leadership Fellow
  • UNC School of Government
    • Public Executive Leadership Academy
    • Group Facilitation and Consultation Workshop
    • Municipal/County Administration Course

Professional Experience

County Housing, Human Rights and Community Development Director
Retired after 30 years of service

Adjunct Instructor and Lecturer of Public Administration – 20+ years

Community Engagement

  • Chair, Durham County Board of Social Services
  • Regional Board Member – Secretary, NC Social Services Board Association
  • Vice-Chair, Durham Technical Community College Board of Trustees
  • Board President, Ivy Community Center, Incorporated

  • Member, Local Government Federal Credit Union Advisory Committee
  • Member, Lawrence and Artelia Perry Scholarship Fund Board of Directors
  • Trustee, St. Mark A.M.E. Zion Church, Durham