The Task Force on Race, Ethnicity and Inclusion was announced on 08/16/2019 by President Karen Archambault
History and Context
Inclusion of and appreciation for all members is one of the pillars of NACADA and has been a key focus of the Association since its founding. The Association has made significant strides with regard to diversity and inclusion, including the development and growth of the Inclusion and Engagement Committee, the Global Initiatives Committee, and the Emerging Leaders Program among others. The leaders and members of the Association have often sought and engaged in challenging conversations and work in order to move the Association forward.
In 2018, efforts regarding diversity and inclusion as a part of our strategic focus were intensified as the Board heard feedback from members through a variety of avenues. This feedback suggested there was much still to be done to reach the goals the Association set for true and meaningful inclusion. Later that year, the Board engaged with an external consultant to broadly consider these questions. The Board has since focused on how to address the need to further engage our community through the lens of race and ethnicity. Recognizing that there are issues related to race and ethnicity that are much bigger than NACADA, several relevant means by which to address race and ethnicity have been identified. This work is significant and deserves specific and dedicated attention.
Subsequent Efforts – As shared in June Monthly Highlights:
The importance of this work and long-time commitment of the professionals involved warranted elevating this group from a task force, which is limited to the term of the president, to a “work group”. This change was approved in the spring of 2020 with the full support and expediency of President Erin Justyna. Co-chaired by Jessica Staten, Indiana University Bloomington, and Locksley Knibbs, Florida Gulf Coast University, Charlie Nutt, NADADA Executive Director, serves as the EO Liaison, and Peggy Goe, NACADA Executive Office, as Project Manager. Three subcommittees were formed from the work group membership. Click here for a summary of their initial charge and list of subcommittee members.
As shared by Co-chairs Jessica Staten and Locksley Knibbs on 8/21/20:
As leaders, we have to engage in conversations and training surrounding Race, Ethnicity, and Inclusion and be seen engaging, perhaps imperfectly, in the hard work necessary to effect culture change. A lot of the work that we will embark upon is a willingness to listen and accept there are things that need to be changed within NACADA. While we recognize that training is only one piece of the puzzle, it is not the solution. Therefore, we are also cognizant that nothing will happen overnight and that real transformation will require intense listening, new knowledge, lots of role-modeling from leaders, and NACADA’s commitment to keep working hard and engaging in conversations about inequality, to the point where folks in the majority absolve themselves of accountability for changing things or confronting their own biases. We absolutely need to increase levels of understanding on topics related to diversity, equity, and inclusion. At the same time, we will continue to serve and remain transparent in our efforts with the membership of NACADA.