Group of people in a circle putting their hands together in the center.

The Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging

The Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging at the University of Kansas is dedicated to the facilitation and support of exceptional research, teaching, service, administration, learning and quality campus life for all. Located in the Office of the Provost, the Office of DEIB is the Chief Diversity Office for the University and works with the Provost to align university strategic initiatives and polices with the educational, programmatic, and administrative needs of the campus community.

The Office of DEIB works in partnership with campus collaborators to help our community achieve equitable and inclusive experiences that reflects the rich diversity of the broader society, while addressing the structural, historical, and systemic barriers that infringe upon expectations for equity in our university community.

Who We Are

As part of the Provost’s office, the KU Office of DEIB works to ensure that diversity, equity, and inclusion are considered in all aspects of campus governance, leadership, teaching, campus life and strategic initiatives. 

Our university-wide DEIB Framework, Realizing Intersectional Standards of Excellence (RISE), is a core organizational framework for Jayhawks Rising and is used as an education and praxis-based pathway for equity at KU for students, staff, and faculty. Through RISE, our office provides educational and strategic guidance at the provost, college and unit levels while using our resources to facilitate campus programming, educational opportunities, and community outreach that produces engaged campus experiences that nurture interdisciplinary and intersectional learning opportunities that improve campus climate and inspire long standing structural change.


To realize a University of Kansas where all Jayhawks see diversity as the starting point of excellence in all aspects of administration, research, teaching, service, and support in a nurturing environment that champions equity across identities, status, abilities, and disciplines so that all community members can innovate and thrive at the highest level.


To advocate, facilitate and support an inclusive environment for all University of Kansas community members including students, faculty, staff, and alumni.Our vision, mission and strategic initiatives facilitate the institution’s goal in achieving an inclusive campus environment that acknowledges the social, cultural, and political factors that impact quality of life and outcomes for our diverse student, staff, and faculty.

What We Do

Our vision and mission are committed to facilitating an intersectional approach for diversity, equity, and inclusion by providing instructional support at the following levels:

Intuitional Level Support

  • University-wide DEIB Framework: Realizing Intersectional Standards of Excellence (RISE) foregrounds diversity and human rights as a structural benchmark of excellence in KU’s institutional life. RISE helps lay the foundation for intentional organizational change and community accountability.
  • Organize and track campus DEI initiatives: DEIB leaders across campus report to the Office of DEIB in Provost Office to track campus trends in the College, Professional Schools, and campus affiliates (Alumni Association, Athletics, and KU Endowment) to identify resource and training needs to support inclusive climates.
  • Provide qualitative and quantitative data: We track and manage campus wide diversity in alignment with HLC and AAU membership criteria
  • Reporting: Providing and reporting on strategic campus DEI plans

Student, Staff, and Faculty Support

  • Campus Goals and Outcomes Mapping: We work with AIRE to identify campus goals for growth in representation of global majority faculty, staff, and students. We present quarterly data to campus working with campus reporting partners that show our growth. We make these goals visible to the public.  
  • Recruitment and Retention: We provide best practices resources for campus wide efforts and consult on retention pathways for students, faculty and staff in partnership  with Human Resource Management, Faculty Affairs, Academic Affairs & Academic Success, Student Affairs, and Office of Graduate Affairs
  • Annual Campus DEIB Goal Reporting: We provide quantitative and qualitative representation and reporting to campus via co-produced annual reports on Jayhawks Rising achievements as it relates to core foundations and improving DEIB efforts on campus 

DEIB Across Campus

Use this map to help guide you in finding multiple resources on campus that promote Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging! This map holds locations for lactation rooms, reflection rooms and gender-inclusive restrooms on campus. Simply search for a location or hover over the icons for room location and information about reserving locations.
DEIB Campus Map with 3 locator icons in red and yellow. Transparent background is Strong Hall.

DEIB Committees

The mission of the Provost’s DEIB Campus Council, which brings together students, staff, faculty, and administrators, is to provide feedback and advice to the Vice Provost (and by extension the Chancellor and Provost) regarding new initiatives, structures, policies, and positions coming from the DEIB Office. The council will advise and share ideas with the Vice Provost about how to address challenges.

  • Ada Emmett, Acting University Ombuds
  • Addison Keegan-Harris, Director Strategic Initiatives for the Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusions, and Belonging
  • Angela Karlin, Assistant Vice Provost/Director of Financial Aid and Scholarships
  • April Blackmon Strange, Director of the Military-Affiliated Student Center
  • Blair Schneider, Associate Researcher and Science Outreach Manager for the Kansas Geological Survey
  • Derek Kwan, Executive Director of the Lied Center for the Performing Arts
  • Dorothy Hines, Associate Professor in Curriculum & Teaching and Associate Professor of African and African-American Studies
  • Erin Duran, Assistant Vice Provost in the Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging
  • Heather Shire, EEO and Title IX Investigator in the Office of Civil Rights and Title IX
  • Keerthana Balashanmuganandam, Program Coordinator in Internation Support Services
  • Kim Conard, Staff Senate D&I Co-Chair and Grand Coordinator for the Office of Research
  • Kit Cole, Software Tester/Accessible IT Coordinator, Information Technology
  • Kristi Lacle, Senior Vice President of Operations and Programs, KU Alumni Association
  • Laura Kirk, Associate Teaching Professor in the Department of Theater & Dance
  • Laurie Harrison, Senior Trainer in Human Resource Management
  • Lisa-Marie Wright, Associate Teaching Professor in the Sociology Department
  • Mary Banwart, Associate Vice Provost in the Office of Faculty Affairs and the Associate Director for the Institute for Leadership Studies
  • Michelle Wilson, Academic Coordinator, TRIO SES & STEM, DEIB Staff Fellow
  • Misty Chandler, Director, Academic Success
  • Monisha Biswa, Student Senate Director of Social Justice
  • Mugur Geana, Assoc. Professor, Associate Professor of Strategic Communications and Director, Center for Excellence in Health Communication to Underserved Populations
  • Rachel Auten, Director of Student Support and Case Management, Student Affairs
  • Samantha Ghali, Doctoral Student, Child Language Doctoral Program; Student Equity & Inclusion Workgroup
  • Sarah Wilson Merriman, Access Specialist in the Student Access Center
  • Sean Navarro, Assistant Director, Military-Affiliated Student Center
  • Shawn Leigh Alexander, Professor and Chair, African and African American Studies
  • Shirani Perera, Employee Relations Specialist Senior in Human Resource Management
  • Tamara Huff Johnson, President, Black Alumni Network
  • Veronica Rodriguez-Mendez, Program Manager for Transfer, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiatives

The DEIB Steering Committee is a working group, convened by the Vice Provost for DEIB, charged with developing concrete steps and tracking metrics of progress for improving diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging at KU. The committee is comprised of professionals across the institution, sometimes referred to as Equity Advisors, who have DEIB work included as a part of their day-to-day job responsibilities within their unit. Together, these individuals provide strategic leadership and accountability within our RISE Strategic Planning process.