WMU search for diversity and inclusion VP is in full swing

Contact: Cheryl Roland

western michigan university campus entrance signKALAMAZOO, Mich.—The search for a new vice president for diversity and inclusion is in full swing at Western Michigan University, with Wednesday, May 30, set as the deadline for submitting nomination and application materials.

A 12-member search advisory committee is in place, and a search website with details about the position and the process has been launched. Dr. Yvette D. Hyter, professor of speech, language and hearing sciences and graduate coordinator for that discipline, leads the search advisory committee.

The successful candidate will replace Dr. Martha Warfield, WMU's first vice president for diversity and inclusion, who has served in the role since 2010 and announced she will retire at the end of July.

The search website offers a summary of the position responsibilities, which include the charge to "lead institutional efforts in implementing a comprehensive strategic plan of advancing diversity, inclusion and equity at Western Michigan University." The new vice president will be expected to collaborate with students, faculty and staff, as well as with local and global stakeholders to:

  • Address systemic barriers to inclusion and equity
  • Galvanize institutional constituents to participate in advancing diversity, inclusion and equity.
  • Provide intellectual leadership.
  • Engage in policy development and implementation.

The website also includes:

  • A position description.
  • An outline of the process that will be followed in the search.
  • A form through which stakeholders can provide their insights, through May 30, about the traits the new vice president should have.
  • A mechanism to contact the search committee.

Search advisory committee

In addition to Hyter, who serves as chair of the search advisory committee, the committee includes:

  • Dr. Angel Gullon-Rivera, associate professor of Family and Consumer Sciences
  • Felicia Crawford, director of Title IX compliance in the Office of Institutional Equity
  • Hardy Figueroa, Alumni Relations, Director
  • Jayne Fraley Burgett, director of Disability Services
  • Ruth Ann Buntin, a graduate student representing the Graduate Student Association
  • Lee Panyak, director of study abroad for the Haenicke Institute of Global Education
  • Marcy Peake, director of diversity and community outreach initiatives for the College of Education and Human Development
  • Patti Sholler-Barber, president of the Kalamazoo Public Schools Board
  • Pooja Mandagere, undergraduate student representing the Western Student Association
  • Suzie Nagel-Bennett, dean of students in the Division of Student Affairs
  • Vun Doubblestein, Division of Multicultural Affairs, Director, Mentoring for Success Program

The search committee will review candidate materials and interview those considered the strongest candidates, bringing finalists to campus for the second round of interviews before submitting its report and recommendations to WMU President Edward Montgomery.

For more WMU news, arts and events, visit WMU News online.