Northwestern forms search committee for next Chief Diversity Officer


Daily file photo by Catherine Buchaniec

Rebecca Crown Center. Northwestern announced the formation of a search committee for its next Chief Diversity Officer.

James Pollard, Summer Managing Editor

Northwestern announced the formation of a search committee to find the next chief diversity officer and leader of the Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion, according to a Tuesday release.

After former CDO Jabbar Bennett, who created the Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion, stepped down mid-February, Women’s Center Director Sekile Nzinga took over as interim CDO.

University President Morton Schapiro had recently shared a message about the University’s commitment to racial and social justice policies. One of those commitments, Tuesday’s release said, is the search for the next CDO, a position the release called “crucial” to ensuring “the entire University family” is engaged in efforts toward equity and inclusion, not just people of color.

The search committee is composed of 14 members and includes faculty, staff, undergraduate students and graduate students. Associate Provost for Strategy and Policy Andrea Bueschel and Vice President for Human Resources Manuel Cuevas-Trisán are the co-chairs of the committee, which will identify and recommend a slate of candidates.

Whoever enters into the “vitally important” position will oversee an office working to counter racism and exclusion and promote equity and access, Interim Provost Kathleen Hagerty said in the release.
“This position and office are important at any time — and especially so when we as a University and a country are grappling with anti-black racism and the disproportionate and inequitable health and economic effects of a global pandemic,” Hagerty said in the release. “I have confidence that the search committee will be successful in helping us identify an outstanding leader who will join us in our commitments to equity and inclusion.”
The release encouraged members of the NU community to submit feedback, questions and candidate recommendations by contacting the search committee at [email protected].

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @pamesjollard

Related stories:

University administrators commit to racial and social justice policies in the wake of Black Lives Matter

Chief Diversity Officer Jabbar Bennett is stepping down mid-February

Women’s Center Director Sekile M. Nzinga named interim chief diversity officer