Northwestern names new director of campus inclusion, community

Paulina Firzoi, Campus Editor

Northwestern’s Division of Student Affairs on Friday named its director of campus inclusion and community, a position created last year amid student outcry over several racially insensitive incidents.

Lesley-Ann Brown, a former adviser to the Department of Multicultural Services at Texas A&M University, will fill the new role, NU vice president for student affairs Patricia Telles-Irvin announced in an email to incoming students.

Brown will work with students and faculty to increase cultural dialogue on campus and offer resources to develop cultural competence, according to the email. Brown will also manage the RespectNU website, which was launched in the spring as an online portal to report bias incidents.

In April, as a part of the University’s strategic plan, NU revamped the existing Faculty Diversity Committee as well as the University Diversity Council to create a larger unit that included more students and faculty. This change came after students urged the University to act on initiatives discussed in the strategic plan, NorthWEstern Will.

Dona Cordero, previously the assistant provost for faculty development and director of change management, was set to chair the new council as assistant provost for diversity and inclusion.

As of now, it remains unclear how Brown’s role will coincide with that of Cordero.

In Friday’s email, Telles-Irvin urged students to handle any peer differences with “civility and respect” as they enter a new school year.

“As we engage you in programs and provide the opportunities, resources and services you will need to succeed, ” she said, “we are counting on you to partner with us in maintaining a campus community that values and respects its individual members and celebrates our identity. Our goal is create a dynamic, inviting and socially-just community.”