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University News

Interim diversity officer named

Senior Staff Writer
Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Professor of Anthropology Lina Fruzzetti will assume the role of interim institutional diversity officer, according to an email sent to the community yesterday by Provost Mark Schlissel P’15.

The appointment comes after Valerie Wilson, the former director of institutional diversity, left for a similar position at the National Science Foundation in Washington, D.C., Schlissel told The Herald. The University will initiate a search for a permanent officer in the coming months.

Schlissel said he studied the position’s responsibilities before choosing Fruzzetti to take the helm.

“It took me a couple weeks to understand the nature of the position and identify Professor Fruzetti as someone qualified and willing to step up,” Schlissel said.

Fruzzetti was not available for comment Tuesday.

The institutional diversity officer is charged with enhancing diversity across campus by focusing on faculty recruitment and promoting diversity within academic departments and centers.

Schlissel said he wanted to fill the position by the time the semester began to accommodate the increase in activity generated by the arrival of new faculty members and students to campus.

Fruzzetti will serve in the temporary position through the fall semester, Schlissel said, and he hopes to recruit someone for the permanent position by January.

The University has not yet begun the search for a permanent officer. When the process begins, “an array of individuals on the campus that play an important role in enhancing diversity” will interview candidates, Schlissel said.

“It’s a very important position for the University,” he said. “Brown is committed to developing … diversity at the student level, the staff level and the faculty level.”

Fruzzetti recently served on the Tenure, Promotions and Appointments Committee and on the committee that named Kevin McLaughlin P’12 the new dean of the faculty at the end of May.

“We look forward to collaborating with Dr. Fruzzetti and members of the Diversity Advisory Board on these and developing efforts,” wrote Mary Grace Almandrez, director of the Third World Center and Associate Dean of the College, in an email to The Herald.

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