Diversity & Equity Advisory Board
A resource for staff and faculty
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Update from the Diversity and Equity Advisory Board on the Anti-Racism Implementation Plan / January 30, 2020 / Audience: Students, Staff, Faculty
Colorado College's Anti-Racism Implementation Plan calls for the elimination of the position of Assistant Vice-President/Director of the Butler Center, held by Dr. Paul Buckley, and replacing that position with three new staff positions. Dr. Buckley has resigned from the College, effective today. On December 18 the Diversity and Equity Advisory Board (DEAB) sent a letter to the president and the members of the Anti-Racism Implementation Plan Team expressing our concerns about the decision to eliminate this position, as well as the mode in which it was communicated to the Colorado College community. In our letter, we requested a face-to-face meeting, which will take place next week, between the A-RIP team and the DEAB. Since then, we have heard concerns from students, staff, and faculty about this development. We aim to represent the campus community in this meeting and invite you to send your thoughts and questions directly to the DEAB at our email: firstname.lastname@example.org . DEAB chairs will collect those emails received by 5PM Monday February 3 and anonymize them before passing them on to the rest of DEAB and bringing them to the meeting. We will report back to the campus as soon as is practical after the meeting.
DEAB update on the Anti-racism implementation plan
February 16, 2020 (also February 17) / Audience: Students, Staff, Faculty
*Note: A truncated version was posted on Today@CC due to word limits. The full update is posted below*
Dear Campus Community,
As you may have seen earlier this week on Monday, Feb 10, President Tiefenthaler sent an update to the campus community on the Anti-racism implementation plan (ARIP). As DEAB, we also want to respond to the people who reached out to us to provide an update on what we have been working on regarding the ARIP that was shared with the community on November, 18, 2019.
Based on some concerns, the DEAB sent a letter to the Anti-Racism Implementation Committee (ARIC) on December 19, 2019. In summary, the concerns the DEAB presented included: the elimination of the position of Assistant Vice President/Director of the Butler Center, how the loss of Dr. Buckley who led anti-racism efforts would affect implementation of the ARIP, how this change negatively impacted many members of the campus community, and how such a significant change was communicated to the campus community. Along with a meeting, the DEAB requested a response to our concerns, a copy of the Butler Center external review, and an open forum for the campus to better understand the current ARIP.
On January 31 the DEAB posted an all campus digest message informing the campus community of the upcoming meeting and inviting community members to give their input. In this communication, our board committed to sharing outcomes of the meeting with the community. Many of the aforementioned concerns presented by the DEAB were mirrored from students, staff and faculty who responded to the digest call.
During the meeting between the DEAB and ARIC, we discussed the following:
- We shared what felt to many members of the community a lack of transparency in communicating the decision to eliminate the Assistant Vice President/Director of the Butler Center position. We inquired into the reasoning behind how this announcement was delivered.
- We shared that many CC community members have been asking for clarification about different aspects of the ARIP, particularly for more information about the rationale for the aforementioned position elimination.
- We inquired into the reasoning behind several substantial changes between Dr. Worthington’s final recommendations from the Antiracism External Review and the draft of the ARIP distributed to the community in August, 2019.
- We articulated that while policy change and continual forward movement is necessary, we cannot ignore, invalidate, or dismiss the people who are actively involved in making Colorado College an anti-racist institution. As such, we asked that the ARIP committee acknowledge the confusion, pain, and fear among many students, faculty, and staff.
- In sum, we urged the committee to reevaluate their methods of communication and to address the impact, even if what happened was not intended.
In response to the concerns the DEAB expressed and the student petition circulated in an open letter over block 5, the following next steps are in motion:
- The DEAB provided an update and summary of the February 5th meeting at the block 5 All-Faculty meeting on Monday, February 10th.
- Another update will occur during the block 5 “In the Loop” meeting on Thursday, February 13th.
- Students have scheduled an open forum on Tuesday, February 18, at 6:00 pm in Gates Commons, Palmer Hall.
- Alumni have circulated an additional open letter (February 11th) articulating their concerns.
It is also important to know that along with President Tiefenthaler’s update on the ARIP sent on Monday, February 10th, the President will send routine updates on progress every other block (1, 3, 5, 7). Further, as articulated in the ARIC response to the student petition in January, Dean Garcia is available to discuss student concerns related to the ARIP.
We want to thank the campus community for sharing their input and remind everyone that the DEAB is available to hear and advocate on the behalf of any issues related to diversity and equity on campus.
The DEAB and A-RIP Team encourage you to regularly check in on the College’s Antiracism Initiative Page for progress reports, archives of email updates, and responses to questions and concerns.
Addendum, part 2: Community Feedback Overview
Feedback from the CC community fell into five major categories, outlined below. In order to respect the anonymity of those who responded, only general examples are included where possible. These five categories of concern were discussed in the DEAB meeting with the A-RIP Team (02/05/2020).
Concern #1: The process of drafting and revising the plan
- Concerns about the level of input by students, faculty, and staff
- Questions regarding the rationale for the changes between the draft and final plans
- The lack of a cabinet-level position as recommended by the Worthington report
- The lack of public forums or opportunities to weigh in on the more major changes between the draft and final plans
Concern #2: Communication
- Timing of the communication of important documents
- Inaccessible language in the implementation plan and other communications
Concern #3: Treatment of Dr. Paul Buckley, former Assistant VP/Director of the Butler Center
- Affirmation of the positive impact that he has had at Colorado College and concern over how he and his work have been addressed during this process.
Concern #4: Damage to the Butler Center
- Affirmation of the work of the Butler Center and concern over the effects that this process and the discourse around it has had on its staff and their work.
Concern #5: Harm inflicted on people of color on campus as a result of the process/messaging during the Antiracism Initiative
The first woman with a Ph.D. to teach was Leila Clement Spaulding, who taught classics from 1911 to 1914. She also was the resident female faculty member in Ticknor Hall (a women’s dormitory). After Spaulding, Colorado College began hiring more female faculty members with a Ph.D.
Check back in the fall of 2020 for more events
Associate Director, The Butler Center
“In my role as Associate Director in the Butler Center, I serve as the manager of the day-to-day operations of the Department. These operations include program planning and service delivery to all students who interface with our office. Requests for programs and services specifically center on the principles of diversity, equity and inclusion. Examples include: one-to-one holistic mentoring, group mentor circles and Teaching and Learning workshops
In my Associate Director role, I supervise (or have supervised) staff in all 3 professional positions in the Butler Center: the Diversity and Inclusion Programs Coordinator, the Coordinator for Mentoring and Diversity Initiatives and the Gender and Identity Specialist. Being aware of the directions that the DEAB are considering for our campus will support Butler Center staff in both meaningful and critical ways; ways that support both our professional development and the student development of the CC student.
I have had experience in past positions (as Director of the Center for Diversity and Inclusion and the Director of Multicultural Programs and Services) of serving on diversity committees and found my involvement a learning opportunity that supported my professional growth and development. With my membership on diversity committees, I was able to lead college-wide efforts to:
Co-create inclusion plans for all departments and offices
Assist Human Resources with hiring for Diversity and Inclusion
Develop and implement trainings for faculty, staff and students
On the CC campus, I envision my membership supporting my partnerships in the Student Life Division as well as in departments across campus including Accessibility Resources, the Office of Sustainability and various academic departments.
For fun and relaxation, I love visiting hot spots (mainly in the Caribbean), eating sweets (particularly chocolate) and listening to music (R&B and jazz)."
How did DEAB get formed?
The Diversity and Equity Advisory Board was formed to serve as an advisory group to the President of the College and the Cabinet on all matters related to diversity and equity regarding staff and faculty. Taking an intersectional approach, the Board expands the work of the former Women’s Concerns and Minority Concerns committees, which were under the purview of the Faculty Executive Committee, to include race and ethnicity; gender, sex, and sexual orientation; and disability. The Board held its first meeting in January 2015.
What is Colorado College's anti-discrimination policy statement? Where can I find it?
Colorado College's anti-discrimination policy was designed to prevent discrimination, harassment, and retaliation by educating students, faculty, and staff about behaviors that may constitute prohibited conduct. When prohibited conduct does occur, this Policy guides affected students, faculty, and staff to support services, interim measures and other resources, and explains the procedures for how conduct may be reported, investigated and addressed.
The policy in its entirety can be found on the College-Wide Policies page.
Does DEAB sponsor/host awareness and education courses about diversity and equity?
DEAB does not sponsor/host awareness and education courses about diversity and equity, but supports The Butler Center in its mission to provide awareness and education on diversity and equity issues.
What type of data collection does DEAB perform? Where can I find that data?
As part of the College's 2018 goals, President Tiefenthaler has charged DEAB with determining what type(s) of data collection and housing methods would be most effective for diversity and inclusion-related information. All data that DEAB has collected (or will collect) will be used to help promote and further our overall mission of supporting diversity and equity as a priority and core value of the College.
Meeting minutes and agendas are available on our website. Formal recommendations made to the President by DEAB will also be posted on this site as we continue to update and improve the site.
Do DEAB members receive training that prepares them for mitigating "diversity-related issues in higher education?"
DEAB members are encouraged to attend diversity and inclusion workshops held by The Butler Center throughout the year. These workshops are designed to provide faculty and staff with skills to better address diversity-related issues
How can I be more engaged with diversity/inclusion/equity issues?
There are several workshops, lectures, film screenings, etc sponsored by departments throughout campus, keep an eye out on the event calendar for more details. Employees can also participate in EXCEL@CC.
What are the main differences between The Butler Center and DEAB?
The Butler Center facilitates learning, mentoring, advising, dialogues, and community-building activities on campus primarily for students.
DEAB promotes and supports diversity and equity among staff and faculty; advises and provides recommendations to the President of the College and the Cabinet on all matters related to diversity and equity regarding staff and faculty; and ensures that CC's anti-discrimination policy statement is upheld.
What departments does DEAB collaborate with?
DEAB collaborates with the President's Office, The Butler Center, Human Resources, any/all departments on campus.
If I have a diversity and/or equity concern, who should I contact?
If the diversity/equity concern involves a student, you should contact your department head, the dean of students, and The Butler Center. If your diversity/equity concern involves a staff or faculty member, you should contact your department head or supervisor, the Dean of Faculty, and/or Human Resources. You can also contact the Diversity and Equity Advisory Board, the Title IX Coordinator, the Chaplain’s Office, the Butler Center, and the Ombuds Office.
How can I get involved/join DEAB? When are elections? What's the process?
The DEAB consists of eight voting members: four (4) faculty as assigned by the FEC, with no more than two from any one division, and including at least one person active in an interdisciplinary program, all serving staggered three-year terms, if possible; and four (4) staff as assigned by the Staff Council, all serving three-year terms, if possible. The faculty and staff co-chair will be selected by the FEC and Staff Council in consultation with the president. In teams of two (one faculty and one staff), members will be assigned to oversee one specific aspect of diversity/equity, to make sure all key issues are recognized and addressed, and the board as a whole will address the intersections as well as any emerging issues. Those areas are: race/ethnicity, gender/sex/sexual orientation, disability and two at large positions.
Non-voting members of the DEAB are a title IX coordinator, the ADA/504 coordinator, the assistant vice president and director of the Butler Center, the director of human resources, and a librarian with diversity/equity research and/or collection responsibilities.
In addition to the above general information in regards to staff:
- There are no formal requirements( length of service, position title, etc. ) that staff are required to meet at this time in order to be nominated by Staff Council for DEAB. Nominations for DEAB are sent by the staff council to the President. This allows the president to review appointments and possibly make suggestions for changes if there are any circumstances which could make a nominated staff member possibly unable to serve. Some circumstances such as a staff member being on a performance improvement plan etc. would likely not make the nominated staff member an ideal candidate to serve on DEAB, and since such matters would be confidential and not known to staff council members, it is important all nominations go to the President for review. These general guidelines are not formal guidelines; however, they have been followed for the past several years.
- As advised above, terms are three years staggered and there are no minimum requirements for staff or faculty on the length of time they must serve.
- Notifications for open seats on college committees of which staff may serve are sent out by Staff Council in late spring for the upcoming year and staff are encouraged to submit their interest/nominations at that time.
- As advised above, the staff and faculty co-chair are approved by the FEC (faculty co-chair), Staff Council (staff co-chair), and the president.
- Non-voting members are specific positions within college. While these non-voting DEAB members are determined based on their position and contributions towards promoting diversity and equity at the college, all changes are sent to the president for review and input.
- Antiracism Initiative