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OIED announces new director of equal opportunity and diversity, institutional equity investigator

Juana De Los Santos to coordinate affirmative action program, Jeana Horton to conduct equity investigations

Juana De Los Santos joined the University’s Office of Institutional Equity and Diversity as the new director of equal opportunity and diversity last month. Jeana Horton also joined the office as an institutional equity investigator.

As director of equal opportunity and diversity, De Los Santos will be tasked with coordinating the University’s affirmative action program and overseeing the creation of annual affirmative action reports, said Vice President for Institutional Equity and Diversity Shontay Delalue. 

The University’s affirmative action program, De Los Santos said, is a compilation of all the policies and procedures that pertain to equal employment opportunity, discrimination, harassment, disabilities and veterans. In her role, De Los Santos will search for opportunities for workforce diversification. 

De Los Santos will also serve as the University’s Americans with Disabilities Act/Section 504 coordinator, reviewing disabilities-related complaints. In addition, she will be responsible for maintaining clear and accessible policies and procedures related to discrimination and harassment compliance. 

De Los Santos said she aims to “enhance the quality of the services” that the OIED provides. While she expressed excitement for her new role, she emphasized the importance of taking a humble and “servant” leadership approach. 

“I don’t think the title makes me; I think I make the title,” she said. 

Horton, as institutional equity investigator, will primarily be responsible for ensuring “fair and equitable” investigations of compliance complaints, Delalue said. These investigations may include matters related to Title IX or discrimination and harassment.

Horton will also engage with potential complainants and witnesses to answer questions about and explain the various investigation processes.

The new director of equal opportunity and diversity: De Los Santos

De Los Santos, who was born in the Dominican Republic, served in the U.S. Marine Corps for over a decade, completing four deployments. Her time as a Marine allowed her “to really interact with diverse countries and individuals throughout the world,” she said. It also gave her a chance to explore a career in diversity and equity as an equal opportunity advisor within the Corps, which she called an “enlightening experience.” 

She added that her work as an advisor motivated her to pursue a master's in industrial and organizational psychology and an Executive Master of Business Administration at The George Washington University. 

After her honorable discharge from the Marines, she oversaw The George Washington University’s affirmative action program. De Los Santos then transitioned to working as administrator for Rhode Island’s State Equal Opportunity Office. 

The University had always been her top choice of schools to work for in an equal opportunity position, De Los Santos said. She views the University as a leader in paving the way as far as diversity and inclusion, citing Brown’s historic decision to hire the first Black woman president in the Ivy League, Ruth J. Simmons. “I knew that I wanted to be a part of that.”

The new institutional equity investigator: Horton

Delalue said Horton stood out in the search process for an institutional equity investigator due to her experience as Lincoln Memorial University’s Title IX coordinator and institutional compliance officer.

Before that role, Horton worked to provide paraprofessional support in special education disputes and discrimination complaints, working with attorneys who represented public school districts in Virginia, Delalue wrote in a Nov. 2 Today@Brown announcement. Horton graduated from James Madison University and Lincoln Memorial University School of Law.

Horton cited Brown’s BWell office as one of the reasons she was attracted to working for the University. “I found (BWell’s peer education training) to be a neat part of the campus community,” she said.

While De Los Santos and Horton have started in their positions working remotely, and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future, they will be considered “essential special employees,” according to Delalue. “If needed, (De Los Santos and Horton) can come on campus in a socially distanced manner” to, for example, conduct an interview for an investigation, she said.

Correction: A previous photo caption reversed De Los Santos and Horton's roles. The Herald regrets the error.



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