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Public activities at ASU
Diversity Excellence Awards luncheon
held April 14; award winners announced
April 15, 2010
Arkansas State University-Jonesboro's 6th annual
Diversity Excellence Awards luncheon recognized several individuals for
their contributions toward strategic diversity initiatives at
ASU-Jonesboro. The awards are presented by ASU's
of Diversity Initiatives.
Dr. Osabuohein Amienyi,
chair and professor of Radio-Television, was the recipient of the 2010
Diversity Excellence Award. The Diversity Excellence Award
recognizes individual faculty members, faculty groups, academic
departments or academic units that demonstrate the highest commitment to
enhancing excellence through diversity. The program recognizes efforts
to enhance diversity in a myriad of ways. Other nominees for this year's
Diversity Excellence Award included the ASU Museum, Dr. Thomas J. Fiala,
Teacher Education, the Department of Residence Life, under the direction
of Patrick Dixon, and the Department of Social Work, chaired by Dr.
The Friends of Diversity awards were presented to Henry Torres,
Teaching and Technology Center,
Dr. John Pratte,
chair of Chemistry and Physics and professor of Physics, and Dr. Jeanine
Weekes Schroer, Philosophy.
Entertainment at the luncheon was provided by members of the ASU
Jazztette, directed by Dr. E. Ron Horton, and members of the ASU Men's
Quartet, directed by Dr. Dale Miller.
Dr. Lonnie Williams, associate vice chancellor, Student Affairs,
delivered the invocation, and Dr. Glen Jones, senior associate vice
chancellor, Academic Affairs and Research, welcomed guests to the
Sherece West, president and CEO of the
Foundation, gave the keynote presentation.
West is nationally known for her leadership in the areas of community
public policy, and, most recently, disaster recovery.
West’s career path began at the Social Security Administration and wound
its way through the Maryland Municipal League, the Washington D.C.
Department of Public Health, the Community Service Society of New York
City, the Ford Foundation, and the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Her grants
areas include housing, community development, race, culture and power
and managing the foundation’s investments in youth mobilization,
engagement, and leadership. She has also served as president and CEO of
the Carrier Foundation, dedicated to improving the life chances of
disadvantaged children and families in southwest Louisiana. Shortly
after West arrived in Louisiana, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita struck, and
after just two months on the job, she was asked to help lead the
Louisiana Disaster Recovery Foundation (LRDF), first as an executive and
subsequently as its Chief Executive Officer. LRDF is committed to
promoting equity and inclusion as communities build back in Louisiana, a
mission that dovetails with the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation vision
of Arkansas as a state where economic, racial, and social justice is
universally valued and practiced.
West holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Public Policy from the University
of Maryland, Baltimore County; a Master of Public Policy from the
University of Michigan Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy; and a
Bachelor of Arts from Bowie State University. She was a Fellow with the
Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Policy Institutes and a 2003–04 Emerging
Leaders Fellow – a joint program of Duke University and the University
of Cape Town, South Africa.
Kyla Dollar, assistant to Dr. Glen Jones and luncheon organizer,
recognized those faculty who had excelled in diversity research this
year. Diversity research grants were awarded to the team of Dr. Irina Khramtsova, Psychology,
Dr. David Saarnio, Psychology, and Nick Taggart,
International Center for English (TICE); Dr. Alyson Gill, Art,
Dr. Aiqun Hu, History, and Dr. Guitele Rahill, Social Work.
Diversity Fellow Melanie Richardson spoke about the
Brother 2 Brother
mentoring program, which provides an avenue to increase the graduation
rates of African-American male students at ASU. Brother 2 Brother
creates a nurturing environment through promoting campus connectedness,
providing academic support, and emphasizing character development and
community service and community, civic, and political responsibility. Richardson
introduced Brother 2 Brother program member Gregory
Wilson, who will graduate magna cum laude this spring with dual majors
in accounting and corporate finance and will begin work with J.P. Morgan
Chase and Co.
Dr. Glen Jones presented the awards and the closing remarks.
For more information about the
of Diversity Initiatives at ASU-Jonesboro, visit the office
contact Kyla Dollar at (870)
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