Oregon State University seeks a dynamic and strategic leader to serve as its Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer. The position reports directly to the President and is a key member of the university’s leadership team.

OSU commits to inclusive excellence by advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in all that we do. We are an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer, and particularly encourage applications from members of historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, women, individuals with disabilities, veterans, LGBTQ community members, and others who demonstrate the ability to help us achieve our vision of a diverse and inclusive community.

Position Summary

As a land grant institution committed to teaching, research, and outreach and engagement, Oregon State University (OSU) promotes economic, social, cultural and environmental progress for the people of Oregon, the nation and the world.

OSU’s vision includes leadership among land grant universities in the integrated creation, sharing and application of knowledge for the betterment of humankind. In this way, we produce graduates, scholarship and solutions that achieve maximum positive impact on humanity’s greatest challenges.

OSU seeks a Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer (VPCDO) to lead and sustain efforts to create a university community characterized by a central commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion. The VPCDO will lead through collaboration, partnership and action to achieve this goal. The VPCDO establishes university goals and objectives related to institutional diversity, equity, and inclusion for all Oregon State campuses, extension offices, experiment stations, and locations and will work with and advise university leadership to foster a vision for advancing institutional goals and to nurture an inclusive culture. They also oversee university-wide assessment of outcomes and set accountability metrics. OSU recognizes that diversity, equity and inclusion are crucial to its pursuit of excellence in teaching, research, and public service. OSU is actively engaged in building a more diverse and inclusive educational environment at all of its locations across the state.

The university has envisioned and organized its administrative offices working in the areas of diversity,

equity, inclusion, and equal opportunity and access so that each office can fully focus on its mission and goals. Through collaboration, partnership and action, these units will work to create a university community characterized in all it does by a central commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion. Reporting to the President, the VPCDO strategically develops the framework to facilitate and encourage internal and external community engagement, develop partnerships to bring about transformative change, and identify and support target areas to maximize the university’s impact locally, regionally, and nationally. The VPCDO works with and advises the President, Provost and Executive Vice President, Vice Presidents, Vice Provosts, Deans, Board of Trustees, and other University leaders to foster a vision for advancing institutional goals and to nurture an inclusive culture.

The VPCDO will also assist the university and the Oregon State University Foundation in donor stewardship and growing philanthropy. Attendance at some Foundation or other fundraising/donor events is part of this position’s job duties, and when attending these events, this position is in an official OSU capacity.

The VPCDO reports to the President and serves on the President’s Cabinet. The VPCDO chairs the President and Provost’s Leadership Council on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (PPLC) and the Equity Leaders Consortium. The VPCDO is the senior official responsible for setting and measuring progress regarding the university objectives related to institutional diversity, equity, and inclusion.

The VPCDO’s broad areas of focus include high-level leadership of the university’s overarching diversity goals, objectives, and strategies involving students, faculty, staff, alumni, internal and external partners, and volunteers; strategic planning; education and outreach; community relations and outreach; communications; campus climate issues; and policy development.

Position Responsibilities

The responsibilities of the Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer include:

  • Leading and supervising the team of six employees within the Office of Institutional Diversity that plans, leads and implements, in collaboration with university partners, institutional change actions and initiatives to advance diversity, equity and inclusion throughout all facets of Oregon State University;
  • Leading the Diversity Strategic Planning committee in measuring outcomes for the current plan while working to develop and implement an updated institutional diversity strategic plan beginning in 2024;
  • Engaging marginalized and underserved populations;
  • Promoting cultural competence across all constituencies;
  • Assisting senior leaders in developing systems of accountability for reaching diversity goals and objectives;
  • Creating reporting mechanisms to ensure that unit diversity plans and initiatives are aligned with the University’s overarching diversity goals, objectives and strategies;
  • Recommending criteria and/or decisions to guide the University’s allocation of resources and strategic investments in support of institutional and unit diversity plans and initiatives;
  • Conducting campus climate studies, demographic studies, and policy analyses;
  • Overseeing OSU’s bias response team and protocols;
  • Supporting academic administrators and faculty in the development of equitable and inclusive curricula, courses, and teaching practices;
  • Partnering with various units to develop comprehensive strategies for recruiting and retaining diverse students, faculty, and staff;
  • Creating and expanding opportunities to encourage student dialogue; and
  • Affirming and celebrating the University’s commitment to diversity and inclusive excellence.

Position Qualifications

It is required that candidates possess:

  • A Master’s degree;
  • At least five years of experience leading diversity and inclusion initiatives and achieving successful outcomes within a large, complex organization;
  • A demonstrable commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity;
  • Superior communication and interpersonal skills;
  • Proven ability to collaborate with underrepresented populations, bridge differences through dialogue, and promote cultural competence across all constituencies;
  • Ability to respond to crisis situations and provide guidance for community wide support and response;
  • Experience supervising others; and
  • Demonstrated ability to facilitate partnerships and mobilize leaders from diverse institutional and community sectors to build and sustain a diverse and inclusive culture.

In addition, it is preferred that candidates possess:

  • A Ph.D. or other terminal degree;
  • An excellent command of contemporary diversity, equity, and inclusion concepts, issues, and best practices in higher education;
  • Successful experience leading large-scale change within a complex, decentralized organization;
  • Experience leading diversity and inclusion initiatives and achieving successful outcomes in an academic environment or mission-driven organization;
  • Experience in teaching, research, or service at a university; and
  • Experience with external relations, strategic communications, fundraising, and development.

Candidates with appropriate academic credentials, faculty status, and/or teaching experience may qualify for an academic faculty position in one of the colleges or programs within the university (tenure is negotiable commensurate with Oregon State policies and guidelines).

Application & Nomination Process

Oregon State University invites letters of nomination, applications (letter of interest, complete CV, and references) or expressions of interest to be submitted to the search firm assisting the university. Confidential review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the appointment is made. It is preferred, however, that all nominations and applications be submitted prior to August 16, 2022:

Porsha Williams, Vice President Jacob Anderson, Senior Principal Parker Executive Search
Five Concourse Parkway, Suite 2875 Atlanta, GA 30328
770-804-1996 ext.: 111
pwilliams@parkersearch.com || janderson@parkersearch.com

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