Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion
Whitman College (“Whitman” or “the College”) seeks an accomplished leader and relationship builder to serve as its next Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion (VPDI). Reporting to the President, and serving as a member of her executive team, the VPDI will join the College at a pivotal moment as it redoubles its efforts to forge an anti-racist environment that values all, prioritizes equity, and celebrates diversity in all its forms. Building on the work and findings of the 2020 Inclusion Task Force, as well as the commitments of Whitman’s 2017–2022 Strategic Priorities, the VPDI will play a lead role in transforming the College while forging an ethos of shared enterprise amongst alumni, trustees, senior leadership, faculty, staff, students, parents, and friends of the College.
Founded in 1882, Whitman College is a highly selective private, independent, co-educational, non-sectarian residential liberal arts and sciences undergraduate college located in Walla Walla, Washington. The College is home to approximately 1,500 undergraduates from forty-four states, the District of Columbia, two U.S. territories, and thirty nations. Since 2005, it has significantly increased the racial and ethnic diversity of the student body, launched a Global Studies Initiative, and completed major capital projects, which included a center to advance dialogue among students, faculty, and staff on diversity and intercultural issues.
In 2017, it completed and published its most recent strategic plan. Guiding the work of the incoming VPDI is the following excerpt:
“Our mission focuses on educating a broad range of talented students in a college community where everyone can participate fully in the life of the College and experience a genuine sense of belonging. For Whitman, diversity includes the composition of the students, faculty and staff, as well as the curriculum, ideas, experiences, relations and cultural traditions across our community. We must become a place where both majority and minority members of our community experience difference every day, where diversity is woven throughout our cultural fabric: our values, our behavior, our culture.”
The next VPDI will insist that Whitman lives these values.
To that end, they will ensure diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts are tethered to all core activities and undertakings of the College while designing and maintaining systems to evaluate and assess their impact. Additionally, the VPDI will spur new initiatives that engage Whitman’s external constituencies, strengthen relationships within Walla Walla, and attract and sustain a robust network of practitioners and stakeholders across the region and country, and throughout the small liberal arts college community.
The successful candidate will be a sought after thought leader and subject matter expert, with at least 10 years of experience, and a record of imaginative and verifiable success in DEI work. They will be a force for intellectual and professional community building, and a charismatic orator, who excites and inspires listeners in all settings, writing and communicating elegantly for a variety of audiences. The VPDI will also possess well-developed skills in facilitating dialogue that raises the level of sophistication around diversity for all members of the campus community, the proven capacity and thoughtfulness to productively partner with faculty, and the ability to translate strategic goals into action. Most importantly, they will have a passion and a heart for students.
Whitman is partnering with the Diversified Search Group on this recruitment. For full consideration, please send nominations, inquiries, and applications by March 22, 2021 to:
Lionel Anderson and Stephanie Franklin
Whitman College provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, sex, gender, religion, age, marital status, national origin, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other basis prohibited by applicable federal, state, or local laws.
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