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UM System announces first round of members for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Task Force

Phase I membership represents leaders of diversity, equity and inclusion, as well as, representatives from key groups from the campuses and system

COLUMBIA – University of Missouri System today announced Phase I of the membership for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Task Force under the direction of Task Force Chair Dr. David Mitchell.

Phase I task force members include:

  • Noor Azizan-Gardner, Assistant Deputy Chancellor for Diversity/Chief Diversity Officer, MU
  • D’Andre Braddix, Assistant Dean of Students, UMSL
  • Deborah Burris, Director, Chief Diversity Officer, and Title IX Coordinator, Office of Equal Opportunity & Diversity, UMSL
  • Ben Canlas, Senior Manager HR, Finance & Supply Chain Applications, UM System
  • Ellen Eardley, Assistant Vice Provost for Civil Rights and Title IX, Title IX Administrator, MU
  • Chuck Henson, Interim Vice Chancellor for Inclusion, Diversity & Equity, MU
  • Daryl Hodnett, Director-Supplier Diversity and Small Business Development Program, UM System
  • Shenethia Manuel, Vice Chancellor for Human Resources, Equity & Inclusion, Chief Diversity Officer, and Title IX Coordinator, Missouri S&T
  • S. David Mitchell, Chair, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Associate Professor, MU
  • Zora Mulligan, Chief of Staff, UM System
  • Neil Outar, Director, Institutional Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Missouri S&T
  • Steven Pankey, Student Service Coordinator, UMKC
  • Brenda Quinlan, Employee Relations Specialist, Title IX Coordinator, MUHC
  • Judy Ricks, Associate Director, Total Rewards Operations, HR Service Delivery, UM System
  • Jody Squires, Associate Regional Director, Urban Region, MU Extension
  • Leona Rubin, Associate Vice President of Academic Affairs and Graduate Education, UM System
  • Mikah Thompson, Director of Affirmative Action/EEO/Title IX Coordinator, UMKC
  • Peggy Ward-Smith, Associate Professor, UMKC
  • Susan Wilson, Vice Chancellor, Diversity & Inclusion, UMKC
  • TBD, Intercampus Student Council

This first round of members was appointed by the UM System based on nominations from the campuses and system units. Another round of membership, Phase II, will be identified by the campuses and will include additional faculty, staff and student leaders. These members will emerge through campus learning and listening sessions that will be scheduled on each campus in February. The two phases of membership selection will enable the task force to be more diverse and inclusive to best reflect campus constituents.

“I am looking forward to learning from and working with my colleagues from the system and across the campuses to complete a thorough, unflinching and critical study of system to develop recommendations for lasting change,” Dr. Mitchell said.  “The events that have brought us to this point highlight that there is much to be done.  I am optimistic that the unique perspectives of this group, along with those yet to be selected, will be transformative for the university and informative for the leadership.”

The task force, established as one of eight diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives by the University of Missouri Board of Curators, will be assessing and then making recommendations regarding the current programs, policies and practices of the UM System including potential revisions in university collected rules. 

The task force will work with stakeholders across the system’s four campuses, health system and Extension to understand the complex issues at hand and develop recommendations and corresponding metrics to address those issues.

The first meeting of the task force will be Thursday, January 21, 2016.




Reviewed 2016-01-19