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The Daily Wildcat

 

UA doubles up and hires both Jesús Treviño and Rebecca Tsosie to fill open chief diversity officer spot

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In lieu of hiring just one new chief diversity officer, the UA instead hired two new employees in hopes of promoting diversity and inclusion on campus.

Jesús Treviño, associate vice president for diversity and senior diversity officer at the University of South Dakota and Rebecca Tsosie,  currently a regents’ professor of law and vice provost for inclusion and community engagement at Arizona State University, have both been appointed after a national search to fill the position concluded this past May. 

Trevino will assume the roll of UA’s new senior diversity officer and vice provost for inclusive excellence and Tsosie will become a regents’ professor of law and the special adviser to the provost for diversity and inclusion. Both will begin their rolls on campus this August. 

“I’m really excited about becoming a part of the wildcat family,” Treviño said. “The UA has a lot of diversity from many different dimensions: gender, sexual orientation and race and ethnicity. I’m looking forward to using those dimensions as assets in order to move an exclusive excellence agenda.”

Originally the UA was going to hire someone for an advertised position dubbed “chief diversity officer”, but instead they hired both of their finalists up for the position.

“I’m very excited because I feel the university has a great opportunity to create an innovative level of implementation of inclusion in academic programs, in faculty development and student affairs,” Tsosie said. “This is an unique opportunity to operationalize inclusion as an asset that serves the university’s central mission.”

UA provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, Andrew Comrie, said they’re fortunate because Treviño and Tsosie will be a huge addition to their unit on campus.

“What we really have to do is make sure that we have the support services to really advance diversity in all of our units, so that people can do it every day, rather than think it belongs somewhere over there in administration,” Comrie said.


According to Comrie, while the protests and letter from the Marginalized Students of the University of Arizona have put an even bigger spotlight on diversity, they coincidentally had already been looking to fill this senior diversity position since last year .

RELATED: UPDATED: Protest for marginalized students a ‘PR event’ to raise awareness of demands

“Student voices are going to be very, very important,” Treviño said.”They have opened a door, created a window and brought diversity to our attention because there’s momentum on campus.”

Treviño said he is looking forward to working with Tsosie, the diversity task force and the diversity coordinating council, as well as listening to students.

“Inclusive excellence is about bringing everybody to the table and having them make a contribution,” Treviño said. “We want to create an engaged community where everyone is aware of the issues the campus is facing.”

Tsosie, who will be both teaching and doing administrative work, said everything worked out for the best, and she’s looking forward to personally talking to students and working with the provost and different academic units on campus.

“Diversity is an important concept because it basically says our institution, represents all of the people that are in our society,” Tsosie said. “The challenge of diversity within institutions is making sure the conditions work for inclusion, so people feel a sense of belonging.”


Follow Chastity Laskey on Twitter.


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