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Watch Van Williams, Pamela Brown and Andenet Emiru discuss equity

Van Williams, Pamela Brown and Andenet Emiru

Van Williams, Pamela Brown and Andenet Emiru

Thank you to those who joined us for our first Leading Toward Equity session on Feb. 15. Hosted by the Office of Workplace Inclusion & Belonging and Internal Communications, this was the first in a series of unscripted conversations with leaders across UCOP on equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI), and our efforts toward becoming an anti-racist organization.

We chose the name Leading Toward Equity to encompass two important points:

  • Becoming an anti-racist organization is a journey that will take time and continual effort.
  • Becoming an anti-racist organization requires shared accountability — there isn’t a single group or office that is solely responsible for our journey.

The Feb. 15 session featured Pamela Brown, vice president of Institutional Research and Academic Planning (IRAP), and Van Williams, vice president of Information Technology Services and chief information officer for UC. The session was moderated by Andenet Emiru, director of external partnerships and projects at the Center for Data-driven Insights and Innovation.

Pamela and Van shared who they are and their personal stories, including their thoughts on systemic bias and racism and its impacts on their personal and professional lives. They stepped in bravely to engage in a dialogue on their own personal biases and how they’ve worked to address them. Van and Pamela reiterated the importance of EDI and anti-racism to IRAP and ITS, while providing examples of the work in their departments to advance EDI and anti-racism.

Watch the recording here

Session highlights

Van on personal bias: “I think I’ve probably expressed every type of bias that I can imagine… racism, sexism, ageism, size-ism, ableism. You name it; I’ve lived it at some point in time. I’m continually self-correcting. We’re kind of in the Peloton space of ‘progress, not perfection’ here.”

Pamela on why EDI and anti-racism are priorities for IRAP and ITS: “We’ve got an amazing, smart, diverse, talented, dedicated group of individuals, and it’s in my best interest to have them in a space where they can be their full selves; where they can grow and develop, and they’re interested in making a difference.”

Save the date for the next Leading Toward Equity session

Our second session will be on Wednesday, May 10 from 1 – 2 p.m. (PT). We’ll provide details as we get closer to the session.

For questions, please contact

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