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Vice Provost for Diversity and Equity

Candidate Evaluation Candidates

  • Rachel Endo

    Rachel Endo

    Founding Dean, School of Education
    University of Washington Tacoma

    Vita (pdf)
    Interactive Interview
    Recording available after May 1st
  • Regina Richards

    Regina Richards

    Assistant Professor, Department of Family Medicine
    Director of the Office of Diversity and Inclusion
    University of Colorado School of Medicine

    Vita (pdf)
    Interactive Interview
    Recording available after May 1st
  • Jennifer Ng

    Jennifer Ng

    Interim Vice Provost for Diversity & Equity
    Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies
    University of Kansas

    Vita (pdf)
    Interactive Interview
    Recording available after May 1st

Position Overview

The University of Kansas seeks a strategic leader and skillful collaborator to serve as the University’s Vice Provost for Diversity & Equity (VPDE). Reporting to the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor, and working within a supportive environment with the Chancellor, Provost, Deans, Vice Provosts/Chancellors, and other campus leaders; the VPDE serves as the senior official responsible for leading and coordinating the University’s diversity and equity efforts. Leading the Office of Diversity & Equity, the VPDE facilitates the coordination of campus-wide diversity initiatives, strategic planning, training, education, research, community relations, policy development, compliance, campus climate issues and communications. Moreover, the VPDE works across all academic and operational units to strengthen a campus-wide culture of inclusive excellence and to connect these units with the resources, training, and strategies they need to achieve their specific diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) goals.

Centered in the belief that an array of values, interests, experiences, and intellectual and cultural viewpoints enrich learning and our workplace, the VPDE leads the University in its commitment to an open, diverse and inclusive learning and working environment that nurtures the growth and development of all. This includes efforts to dismantle oppression and address discrimination and other exclusionary practices in their various forms, with the goal of fostering a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming environment for all students, staff, faculty, alumni, and community partners.

A successful candidate will be a strong relationship builder, an excellent communicator, and a DEI advocate adept at maneuvering in a highly matrixed organizational environment. They will work closely with the Provost to review programs, services, and resources as well as address issues that impede the University’s progress on its diversity, equity, and inclusion goals. The VDPE will serve as the University’s leading voice on issues pertaining to DEI to both internal and external audiences, providing thought leadership and publishing on a national stage when possible.

The position is a 12-month, 1.0 FTE position that reports to and serves at the pleasure of the Provost.  This opportunity may include a .20 FTE faculty position in an academic unit based upon candidate credentials and interest.


Primary Responsibilities

80% Leadership

Vision Setting and Strategic Leadership

  • Lead the successful creation and implementation of a DEI plan that ensures campus-wide collaboration.
  • Act as a catalyst in stimulating important institutional discussions and offer insightful solutions on complex topics that help the University achieve its DEI aspirations.
  • Collaborate with key stakeholders and others to define DEI in alignment with the University’s mission, ensure that there are clear and well-understood goals and objectives, and provide assistance in helping units achieve their respective goals.

Administrative Oversight

  • Oversee a $2 million operating budget and engage as appropriate to build financial support through fundraising and other external support.
  • Provide leadership and oversight for the following offices: Center for Sexuality & Gender Diversity, the Emily Taylor Center for Women & Gender Equity, the Office of Multicultural Affairs, and the Multicultural Scholars Program.
  • Serve as Executive Director of the Multicultural Scholars Program.
  • Exercise discretion and ensure a strict adherence to confidentiality pertaining to sensitive matters.
  • Develop appropriate benchmarks for success to support, assess, and modify DEI efforts.
  • Monitor and analyze institutional data in the context of national data related to diversity initiatives and climate. This includes climate studies, demographic data, and policy analyses.
  • Provide regular data-driven feedback to the campus community on the effectiveness of the University’s efforts.

Collaboration, Empowerment and Implementation

  • Engage and collaborate with key units including, but not limited to, Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, International Affairs, Undergraduate Studies, Graduate Studies, Faculty Development, and Human Resource Management while understanding the context of the University’s matrixed organization.
  • Foster the implementation of DEI curriculum through the efforts of academic leaders and faculty.  Work with academic leaders and faculty to implement such principles into the classroom and related materials.
  • Build partnerships with fellow diversity officers on campus to bring clarity and consistency to existing roles as well as provide diversity officers with necessary resources, support, and training.
  • Facilitate and provide in-house expertise that can and should be leveraged.
  • Develop and maintain active partnerships with the external community and appropriate alumni groups in support of diversity, equity, and inclusion at KU.
  • Oversee the Campus Equity Implementation Committee and the various Faculty and Staff Identity Councils.  Serve on various committees, councils, and taskforces as appropriate.
  • Meet monthly with Student Senate and University Governance.
  • Provide outreach, advice, training, guidance and resources to campus leaders, administrators, academic units, and appropriate offices on DEI practices to assist faculty, staff and students in creating and maintaining an inclusive campus community.
  • Work with leadership to design and implement strategies to help recruit, support, and advance diverse faculty, staff, and students from under-represented groups on campus.

Integration of DEI Work into the Academic Mission

  • Collaborate with the provost, deans, and faculty to support the incorporation of content that reflects diverse perspectives into the educational experience and research endeavor.
  • Support the development of inclusive classrooms and research spaces/teams.
  • Support professional development related to cultural competence.
  • Continue to bolster and evaluate established training mechanisms for faculty around issues such as equitable and inclusive hiring processes.

20% Other duties as assigned by the Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor

Required Qualifications

  • A Ph.D. or other advanced degree (e.g., MA, MBA);
  • Evidence of leadership and supervision experience related to achieving institutional change around DEI work;
  • Strong oral, written, and interpersonal skills as demonstrated through application materials, interview, and references;
  • Professional work experience in designing a strategic plan, curriculum and resource development, budgetary oversight, and assessment administration articulated around a defined vision;

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience at a large, comprehensive research institution as a faculty member or administrator; or work experiences that demonstrate an understanding of and effectiveness at working on DEI issues within a complex higher-education institutional setting;
  • Demonstrated understanding of intersectionality and the ways in which multiple identities intersect in efforts to foster diversity, equity, and inclusion across campus.
  • Proven ability to understand and draw from appropriate procedural knowledge for responding to bias-related incidents when they occur on university campuses;
  • Demonstrated ability to provide anticipatory and solution-oriented thinking around broad cultural and societal concerns to effectively lead transformational change;
  • Five years or more of progressively significant leadership experience with generating a positive environment of diversity, equity, and inclusiveness for students, faculty, and staff;
  • Experience developing and maintaining strategic and collaborative relationships with stakeholders within a university setting and its surrounding community.  

Terms of Appointment

Service in the Vice Provost for Diversity & Equity role is at the pleasure of the Provost & Executive Vice Chancellor. This position will receive a competitive compensation package and comprehensive employee benefits. Faculty appointment terms can be negotiated as necessary.


Interested candidates should use the “Apply to Job” button on the page https://employment.ku.edu/vice-provost-diversity-equity/16120br

A complete online application will include the following:

  1. Letter of application, highlighting relevant educational, research, and administrative experience;
  2. curriculum vita;
  3. a statement of diversity, equity, and inclusion;
  4. contact information (including email) of three professional references. No further reference checks will be made without approval of the applicant. 

The position is available with a negotiated start date on or around July 1, 2020. Applicants are encouraged to apply by February 12, 2020, in order to receive optimal consideration.

Confidential nominations are invited and may be sent to vpdesearch@ku.edu no later than January 5, 2020. Applications, inquiries, and nominations can be addressed to:

Sarah Deer
D.A. Graham

Co-Chairs of the Vice Provost for Diversity & Equity Search Committee

The University of Kansas prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, national origin, age, ancestry, disability, status as a veteran, sexual orientation, marital status, parental status, gender identity, gender expression and genetic information in the University’s programs and activities.


Search Committee

Name Title Contact
Sarah Deer, co-chair Professor of Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies sarah.deer@ku.edu
D.A. Graham, co-chair University Ombuds ombuds@ku.edu
Shawn Alexander Professor of African and African American Studies slalexan@ku.edu
Kelly Chong Professor and Chair of the Department of Sociology kchong@ku.edu
Pere DeRoy Graduate Teaching Assistant in Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies Pderoy@ku.edu
Tiara Floyd undergraduate student tiaramfloyd@ku.edu
Brittani Fults Title IX investigator, Office of Institutional Opportunity & Access fultsb@ku.edu
Abby King Accommodation Specialist, Human Resource Management abigailw@ku.edu
Ward Lyles Associate Professor School of Public Affairs & Administration w872l929@ku.edu
Annie McBride Director of Projects and Policy Development, Office of Diversity & Equity annie@ku.edu
Mario Medina Associate Professor of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering mmedina@ku.edu
Eugene T. Parker Assistant Professor of Education Leadership and Policy Studies eparker@ku.edu
Precious Porras Assistant Vice Provost of the Office of Diversity & Equity, Director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs pporras@ku.edu
Megan Paceley Assistant Professor of Social Welfare mpaceley@ku.edu
Melissa Peterson Associate Director of the Achievement & Assessment Institute mmpeterson@ku.edu
Kevin Smith Dean of KU Libraries klsmith12@ku.edu
Michelle Wilson Education Program Coordinator, Achievement & Assessment Institute michellewilson@ku.edu
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