President's Message


President’s Message
Dear NADOHE Colleagues: 

I trust that this communication finds you well and that you have managed to find time over the past couple of months to recharge your batteries, enjoy your families and prepare for what will be another year of challenges and rewards as leaders in higher education. Our work as senior level diversity professionals is often quite taxing personally and we must remind ourselves to exercise self-care as we exert ourselves as institutional leaders.

I write to provide some updates about our association since our last national conference in Philadelphia in March 2019. NADOHE had its largest conference ever with nearly six hundred attendees including international participants from the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands as presenters and participants. We are very fortunate that our members value the professional and personal benefits provided by our national meeting and continue to participate at record levels. At the conclusion of 2019 NADOHE conference, the conference planning committee was already at work planning our 2020 conference.

So save the date of March 11-14, 2020 for the 2020 NADOHE conference at the Intercontinental Hotel in San Diego. More details soon!

I am excited to report that NADOHE held its third annual Standards of Professional Practice Institute (SPPI) in June 2019! We had forty diversity professionals attend the SPPI, led by a national faculty of researchers and diversity practitioners. Participants evaluated the institute as a tremendous success with a first rate curriculum that provides research based standards to increase their capacity to lead institutional diversity and inclusion programs and practices. The 2020 SPPI planning is underway. Dr. Clyde Pickett, CDO at Minnesota State and Dr. Rosemary Kilkenny, VP and CDO at Georgetown University, are leading the planning efforts. The location and dates for the 2020 SPPI will be announced shortly.

NADOHE’s Board of Directors concluded its annual meeting July 2019. I am pleased to report that we made important strides toward ensuring our success in the future. The board of directors voted to increase the number of inclusive excellence awards, including a global engagement award, and increase the number of CDO Fellows from five to ten per cohort starting this year. NADOHE 2019 - 2022 strategic plan was approved as was the near final version of the revised Standards of Professional Practice for CDOs in Higher Education. Watch for NADOHE announcements regarding these developments in the coming months.

Another important board action was the decision to recruit more NADOHE members to participate on NADOHE’s standing committees, which conduct the routine business for NADOHE. We have ten standing committees ranging from the annual conference planning committee to our marketing and communications committee. Our goal is to recruit 50-60 new committee members in the coming year to take important leadership roles within NADOHE. We invite you to visit NADOHE’s website at to review the list of committees and the contact information of committee chairs to become involved as a leader in NADOHE.

Finally, we will continue to monitor national issues that affect diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education. Recent news reports on potential challenges by federal government offices to admissions processes that are intended to advance student diversity on our campuses is disturbing for several reasons and can have a chilling effect on efforts to ensure equal access to higher education. We will closely monitor these recent pronouncements on student admissions and other efforts that have potential impact and implications on higher education. 

Additional issues we will continue to monitor and track: the travel ban on international students and scholars; changes in legislation for undocumented students and their deportation; the proposed changes to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs; and, changes by the U.S. Department of Education’s, Office of Civil Rights in Title IX guidance on sexual misconduct and protections against discrimination of transgender students. 

In closing, I invite all members to tell us how we may better support you in your work and recommend ways we may improve our association to enhance the return of your investment as members of NADOHE.

On behalf of the Board of Directors, best wishes to everyone for a healthy and productive year.

Archie W. Ervin, PhD