In recent months, the Leadership Team and the entire Extension community has been focused on how to express our commitment to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion in our distinct division and in the diverse community we serve across the region. This requires a long-term, ongoing commitment which was sparked by this year’s notable civil unrest and inexcusable injustice against Black Americans and People of Color.
As an initial step on this intentional path, we issued a call for applications for Extension’s new Inclusive Excellence Advisory Council. I am pleased to announce that the application period has closed, and the Council members have been selected. The diverse perspectives, talent and passion of these individuals makes me incredibly optimistic about our ability to move forward towards bold and lasting change.
The members of the Inclusive Excellence Advisory Council, representing different Extension units, are:
- Ivana Bonaccorsi, International Programs
- Georgia Kovacs, Center for Research and Evaluation
- Maysoon Lehmeidi-Dong, Education and Community Outreach
- Maurice Nelson, Continuing and Professional Education
- Valerie Nickels, International Programs
- Sakinah Nuckles, Human Resources
- Shannon Reilly, OAPED
- Megan Scollay-Casillas, Marketing
- Joyce Short, Continuing and Professional Education
We are looking to this Council to lead the strategic direction for inclusive excellence at Extension, advancing and promoting a culture where diversity, equity, and inclusion are valued and championed. Please support them in whatever way you can.
With the full support of Extension’s Leadership Team, the Council will need your voices and continued participation to make true progress. Everyone in the Extension community should feel comfortable communicating with the Council by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to raise or suggest topics that you feel should be addressed.
The Council will host its first meeting in the coming weeks to identify next steps. They will communicate with the broader Extension community through the Inclusive Excellence website.