NADOHE President's Message
Benjamin D. Reese, Jr.,
I am pleased to report that in spite of the challenges of the national landscape of higher education diversity, NADOHE is in a strong position ... and moving forward. No doubt that the decision in the Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin will impact strategies to insure broad opportunity for students across the nation, but I can assure you that your organization has been active in this arena and is showing leadership. In October, NADOHE played a leadership role in organizing nine of our nation's foremost higher education organizations in issuing a joint public statement in support of affirmative action in the Fisher Case. This was followed by a press conference and a highly visible gathering outside of the Supreme Court on the morning of opening arguments. Regardless of the mandate of the Court, NADOHE will continue to advocate for inclusive excellence. Planning is already underway for a major Post-Fisher Conference to explore implications of the Court decision and discuss appropriate next steps. Watch for details.
It was wonderful meeting so many of you during our Annual Conference in Washington D.C. in March. We had by far the largest conference in our history, almost a 30% increase in attendance! In addition to stimulating keynote addresses, we introduced a New CDO Institute that drew an overflow crowd. We're already planning a similar session for next year ... in a much larger room. We also debuted a session that highlighted the collaborations that NADOHE has been fostering with key organizations. The presentation by the President and CEO of CUPA-HR, was particularly well received, as was the NCAA's presentation that highlighted their focused work in the area of diversity. Recently, I have been invited to facilitate a panel at the NCAA's 2013 Inclusion Summit, discussing the CDO-Athletic Director strategic relationship. This is just one example of our effort to emphasize the important role that CDOs can play in the arena of athletics and inclusive excellence. I hope to see you in San Diego, the site of next year's NADOHE Conference.
We are also about to launch another exciting partnership. NADOHE is working with the Office of Educational Equity & Inclusion at Alcorn State University to co-sponsor one of the nation's first HBCU summits to examine the role of diversity leadership on HBCU campuses. The summit will be held at Alcorn State University, April 28-29. We anticipate that this will be an annual event.
As I enter the second year of my presidency, I am proud to say that NADOHE is strong, and growing! In the last year, membership has grown by 18%. In addition, our student and organization membership has also expanded. Most exciting, is our growth from two formal NADOHE Chapters to four ... with 7-8 regional and state organizations in the process of applying for Chapter status. We have created a new NADOHE Advisory Board and are deeply grateful to the college and university presidents that have joined our Board, in addition to other national higher education leaders. We have created the first of several NADOHE Listservs for the exchange of ideas and posting of questions, started a Facebook page, are launching a series of webinars and continue to receive national acclaim for our Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, an important member benefit. Our newest member benefit is a complimentary one year subscription to DIVERSE: Issues in Higher Education Magazine.
I am humbled by the honor and opportunity to serve you, the membership. I look forward to your ongoing feedback and support.
Benjamin D. Reese, Jr., PsyD