Inclusive Excellence Awards Recipients Recognized During 
2018 NADOHE Annual Conference

The National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) recently recognized the 2018 Inclusive Excellence Award recipients during its annual conference, March 9, 2018, Washington, DC.
According to NADOHE President, Archie W. Ervin, "The intent of NADOHE's Inclusive Excellence Awards is to recognize and promote innovative strategies and tactics designed to achieve inclusive excellence in higher education. We are delighted to recognize this year's Inclusive Excellence Award recipients and their institutions for their stellar accomplishments with moving the needle toward inclusive excellence practices within American higher education."

The 2018 Inclusive Excellence Awards Recipients are:
Frank W. Hale, Jr. Award
Dr. Terry A. Nance
Villanova University

This award was named in memory of Dr. Frank W. Hale, former vice provost for minority affairs and professor at Ohio State University. Dr. Hale is remembered as a tireless crusader, of 54 years, for diversity in higher education and leaves behind a distinguished legacy.

For 40 years, Dr. Terry Nance has served as teacher, scholar, founder, leader, activist, and support system for students, staff, and faculty at Villanova University. Her contributions to teaching, research, administration, and advocacy have impacted alumni and colleagues nationally and internationally. She is the first Black tenure-track faculty member in Communication. In 1998 Dr. Nance became the first African American chair at Villanova University.  She established the University’s African-American rhetoric course and created the highly sought after multicultural leadership course.   

As a researcher, she has investigated the perceptions and stages of interracial relationship development, diversity and inclusion, and intergroup dialogue. 

Throughout her career, Dr. Nance has been extensively involved with service to students and to the university. In fact, she founded Villanova’s MLK Day of Service, initially running the program out of the trunk of her car due to a lack of resources. This program is now funded by the university and serves countless programs and communities in the greater Philadelphia area. 
Dr. Nance became the founding Assistant Vice President for the Center for Multicultural Affairs (CMA).

Under Dr. Nance’s leadership Villanova became a founding member of NADOHE
In 2016 Dr. Nance was promoted to Associate Vice Provost for Diversity and Inclusion and is a member of the President’s Cabinet. She is considered a national expert on intercultural communication, dialogic pedagogy, and diversity and inclusion. 

Individual Leadership Award
Dr. Wanda Heading-Grant
University of Vermont

This award is presented to a NADOHE member for outstanding contributions to research, administration, practice, advocacy and/or policy, and whose work informs and advances the understanding of diversity and inclusive excellence in higher education.

A nominator writes: “Dr. Heading-Grant’s contributions as a change agent in the advancement of diversity and inclusive excellence in higher education are unparalleled. She has a universal ability to connect people, irrespective of issue, audience or venue, and this skill has enabled her to effectively transform the State of Vermont’s principal, and predominantly white, flagship institution. In her three decades of service to the University of Vermont she has served in a wide range of academic and administrative roles including Executive Director, Associate Dean, Associate Provost, Chief Diversity Officer, and Vice President. Her wealth of professional experience and volunteer service on the boards of numerous non-profit organizations and civil rights advisory committees have earned her a reputation as a cultural architect able to build and sustain real and lasting change. She is truly a visionary leader who has developed and implemented innovative strategies and programs that engage and unite the communities she serves.”  Examples of her leadership include:

1. The relocation of the Mosaic Center for Students of Color from a remote part of the campus in 2016 to expanded space on ‘Main Street,’ a highly visible and accessible campus location that is at the (geographic) heart of student life. 

2. The transformation of the university’s staff performance review process resulted in the 40% annual rate of participation in 2015 to an increase to over 90% participation in 2017.  

3. The adoption and development of the University’s Six-Credit Diversity Graduation Requirement and subsequent launch of the university’s annual faculty development workshop titled The Blackboard Jungle Symposium (BBJ) are further accomplishments spearheaded by Heading-Grant. 

Institutional Excellence Award
Stockton University
New Jersey

This award recognizes the results of institutional leadership transformation. It is given to an institutional member that has demonstrated measurable progress in promoting and sustaining innovative diversity efforts within his/her campus community. These efforts may involve, but are not limited to, institutional leadership, curricular reform, institutional transformation, professional development, assessment policies and practices, accountability measures, and outreach efforts.  

Stockton University, opening in 1970, is the only public comprehensive regional university in Atlantic County, New Jersey. Stockton’s main campus in Galloway, New Jersey is located in the Pinelands National Reserve. Stockton’s roots began in Atlantic City, New Jersey and reflective of the diversity of that area, since its beginning, Stockton has worked hard to support and honor its diverse population. In 1971, the Council of Black Faculty and Staff was formed.
In 1983, Dr. Vera King Farris, a native of Atlantic City, was named third President of the College. Dr. Farris was the first woman, the first African American, and then became the longest-serving president to lead Stockton University. 
In 1990, the College opened the Holocaust Resource Center, one of the first hosted by a public college. The Resource Center, including a library and archive of video and audio histories of Holocaust survivors and artifacts from the Holocaust, became the hub for the school’s pioneering role in Holocaust and Genocide education. This role would grow to include offering the nation’s first Master of Arts program in Holocaust and Genocide Studies (1999) and conducting teacher training in Holocaust Education for thousands of teachers.

In 2008, the College initiated Stockton 2020 as an ongoing planning process around Learning, Engagement, Global Perspectives and Sustainability (LEGS). Faculty, staff and students submit their ideas via proposals that address one or more LEGS components for 2020 funding. The funding provided by 2020 primarily provides seed money to start programs and initiatives that are new to Stockton. Over the years, the 2020 Committee has awarded over $386,000 to support the development of initiatives directly related to diversity and inclusion such as: 

1. The Matter of Black Lives: Black Experiences in the United States and the Question of Genocide-- 

2. International Writers in Residence Program that brings international writers to Stockton for longer residency periods.

3. the “Created Equal: Civil Rights in New Jersey” Exhibition and a 2013 National Endowment for the Humanities selection as one of the sites for its “Bridging Cultures” Initiative

4. “Growing Up in the Other Atlantic City” A Production in collaboration with the Atlantic City African American community.

Outstanding Dissertation Award
Dr. Raquel Wright-Mair
University of Denver

This award recognizes a completed dissertation, either quantitative or qualitative, that has contributed substantially to the literature and to the field of diversity and inclusive in higher education. The dissertation should serve as exemplary model of research that not only inform, but also elevate the discourse. Research may include, but is not limited to, campus diversity initiatives, curricular transformation, and the roles and responsibilities for chief diversity officers.
Dr. Wright-Mair analyzed how institutions of higher education shape the experiences and outcomes of faculty of color. Scholarly research on faculty from racially minoritized populations is relatively sparse. The literature that did exist prior to Dr. Wright-Mair’s dissertation highlighted the challenges that they face, such as hostility from White students, cultural taxation from heavy mentoring and service loads, and a devaluation of their diversity-related research agendas. This body of scholarship, combined with the underrepresentation of faculty of color nationally, underscore the significance of work that advances knowledge about how to foster success among this population.
In preparing for her dissertation, Dr. Wright-Mair astutely observed that research on the ways in which postsecondary institutions can, and sometimes do, create the conditions for diverse faculty populations to thrive was virtually non-existent. In response, Raquel utilized an anti-deficit, equity-oriented framework, and in-depth qualitative analysis to better understand how college and universities’ environments influence the experiences and outcomes of faculty of color. Her dissertation offers new insights into how campuses can more effectively validate, connect, and support faculty of color in the academy.

Dr. Wright-Mair’s dissertation offers new practical insights into how campuses can more effectively validate, connect, and support faculty of color in the academy. Consequently, chief diversity officers—and other professionals across both academic and student affairs—will undoubtedly find her dissertation implications thoughtful and useful in their efforts to better support and work with faculty of color

About NADOHE - The National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (NADOHE) serves as the preeminent voice for diversity officers in higher education with the vision of leading higher education towards inclusive excellence through institutional transformation. NADOHE currently has approximately 600 individual and institutional members. For more information, please call 561-472-8479 or visit


Leading Higher Education Towards Inclusive Excellence