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Chief Diversity Officer and Senior Advisor to the President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion


Diversity, equity and inclusion have always been part of Duquesne University. Duquesne's Catholic Spiritan founders have always believed in welcoming all and excluding none. The University’s founding in 1878 took place because recent immigrants and their families, working in the steel mills and factories, were being systematically denied opportunity in Pittsburgh’s growing economic and societal network. Today, Duquesne continues to have a strong commitment to DEI. It is seen every day in our community’s nearly 9,000 students representing 48 states, 75 countries and a broad range of diverse backgrounds and experiences. DEI is essential to advancing the University's mission.

Since 2017, under the leadership of President Ken Gormley, Duquesne has shown a greater and more visible level of commitment to DEI efforts. In 2018, the University launched its five-year strategic plan with DEI as a key imperative of that plan. As noted in the plan, “[a]s Duquesne has become more complex and has drawn people from around the nation and the world, the strategic plan necessitates that the University commit to vibrancy and a climate to foster achievement.” Since then, the University has taken many important actions to boost its commitment to DEI including the formation of the President's Advisory Council for Diversity and Inclusion. At President Ken Gormley’s request in Fall 2020, the University began engaging in a comprehensive process with the goal of creating a more diverse, inclusive and equitable campus community which has already resulted in tangible outcomes such as a framework for a DEI Action Planning process, the creation of a bias and education response team, and new space for the University’s student-facing Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

The Position and a Summary of Duties:

The Chief Diversity Officer and Senior Advisor to the President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (the “CDO”) will be a member of the President’s cabinet and a visible, accessible, knowledgeable, and trusted diversity, equity and inclusion (“DEI”) leader.  The CDO will champion the importance and value of a diverse, equitable and inclusive environment and lead the development of effective strategies to create, support and advance a culture of respect where all individuals are able to thrive and engage fully in Duquesne’s academic, intellectual, social, and spiritual life.  The CDO will be responsible for overseeing the coordination and development of DEI initiatives across campus in support of a learning and working environment where all have an opportunity to succeed. 

Duties and Responsibilities:

Serve as an innovative, collaborative and persuasive leader as the University’s inaugural CDO.

Advise the President and senior leaders on issues relating to University DEI strategy and develop and present an array of innovative ideas and program concepts for consideration, selection and implementation by the President and the appropriate University unit.

Develop or coordinate strategies, programs and initiatives that enhance the University’s efforts to foster and increase diversity, improve equity, and cultivate inclusion for all students, faculty and staff.

Serve as a key collaborator with the Center for Community-Engaged Teaching and Research, the Title IX office, the Disability Resources office, the Center for Excellence in Diversity and Student Inclusion, faculty DEI leadership within the Provost’s office and in DEI committees, and other University units that are focused on equity, diversity and inclusion (collectively “Key Campus Partners”).

Foster and advance DEI by working proactively, strategically and collaboratively with units across the entire Duquesne community.

Working with Key Campus Partners, actively engage and connect with students, faculty and staff to establish trust, using effective cross-cultural skills to collaborate, motivate, partner and facilitate productive dialog.

Develop or coordinate educational opportunities for University community members on issues of diversity, equity and inclusion.

Serve as the coordinator of the President’s Advisory Council on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
Participate as an active member of the President’s Cabinet and collaborate with Cabinet leaders to ensure that their functional work areas, communications and decisions are aligned with diversity, equity and inclusion strategies.

Develop agreed means to measure and provide internal progress reporting of DEI initiatives.

Provide input with respect to institutional planning, assessment, resource allocation and budgeting processes as requested to help ensure that the University’s goals are achieved.

Demonstrate a commitment to continuous quality improvement, outstanding service to stakeholders, and a standard of professionalism and leadership that reflects the University’s vision, mission, values, strategic priorities and goals as a Catholic and Spiritan institution.

Adhere to compliance with applicable rules and regulations.

Working with Key Campus Partners, grow and sustain relationships among external organizations that support the University’s DEI strategies and goals, including coordination of DEI initiatives within the external community through conversation, training, curricula and/or programming.

Other duties as assigned.

Experience, Skills and Abilities:

Minimum of six years’ experience in higher education or a related organization with DEI teaching, coaching and program development experience.

Development, implementation and assessment of diversity, equity and inclusion strategies and initiatives.

Demonstrated experience in consulting with internal and external constituents.

Cross-cultural competencies, including strong emotional intelligence and the ability to engage and build relationships with constituencies.

Excellence in communication (both written and oral) and a proven track record of facilitating conversations and mediating diverse opinions.

Collaboration, organizational and leadership skills.

Commitment to quality, integrity and confidentiality.

Ability to impact organizational change.

Results oriented.


Knowledge of DEI policy, research and practice.

Education and Certifications:

Master’s Degree or other advanced degree required

PhD or other terminal degree preferred