Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Santa Clara, CA

Santa Clara University

Santa Clara University, an institution that blends high-tech innovation with a social consciousness grounded in the Jesuit, Catholic educational tradition, seeks a strategic, collaborative, and courageous leader and change agent to serve as its inaugural vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion.

Founded in 1851, and located in the heart of Silicon Valley, Santa Clara University is committed to the Jesuit, Catholic tradition of educating the whole person — mind, body and soul — and preparing students to create a more just, humane, and sustainable world. Today, the University includes more than 8,600 students (5,600 undergraduates; 3,000 graduate students), over 900 faculty, over 1,050 staff members, and more than 104,000 living alumni.

Reporting to President Kevin O'Brien, S.J., who was appointed in July 2019, the vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion will join Santa Clara at a pivotal and transformational time in the University's history. Santa Clara acknowledges and seeks to end bias and exclusion on campus and in the world beyond, and welcomes recent challenges and calls to action for the ending of anti-Black racism and other forms of racial injustice. In response, the president has reinforced his strong commitment to leading the SCU community to racial and restorative justice:

“No work is more important than our efforts to realize a more inclusive, welcoming and safe campus where all are respected and valued.... As president, I will prioritize making Santa Clara an anti-racist institution. I invite you to join with me in this vital priority, for such transformation requires many hearts, hands, minds, and souls.”

The vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion will build on past efforts, including the recommendations from the Blue Ribbon Commission on Diversity and Inclusion (2016), the Task Force on Diversity and Inclusion (2017), and the Campus Climate Team (2018-19), to drive meaningful change in campus culture.

The new vice president will be a bold, visionary and strategic thinker, someone who will rise to this moment and shape the future of diversity, equity and inclusion for Santa Clara. Harnessing the insights and energy of faculty, staff, alumni, and students, as well as its culture of innovation, commitment to social justice, and dynamic relationship with the entrepreneurialism of Silicon Valley, the vice president will set the tone and build a strategic plan for an environment that educates leaders of competence, conscience and compassion while fostering a strong sense of belonging for all.

The ideal candidate will have a proven record of innovative applications of emerging practices around equity, diversity and inclusion in a higher education context and success in leading positive culture change in complex organizations. The vice president will listen with empathy and concern; nurture positive, transparent and cooperative relationships; navigate difficult conversations and tough situations with compassion and astuteness; demonstrate skill in motivating and unifying people across campus around a strategic vision; and utilize data and research to inform analysis leading to the development of measurable goals and systems of accountability. An earned doctorate or other terminal degree is preferred. While the successful candidate will serve full-time as the vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion, the candidate could be eligible to hold a faculty appointment at Santa Clara University concurrent with serving in the vice president’s position.

All applications, nominations and inquiries are invited. Applications should include, as two separate documents, a CV or resume and a letter of interest addressing the themes in the leadership profile, available at

WittKieffer is assisting Santa Clara University in this search. For fullest consideration, candidate materials should be received by November 2, 2020.

Applications, nominations and inquiries can be directed to:

Shelley Arakawa, J.D., Christine Pendleton and Suzanne Teer at

Equal Opportunity/Notice of Nondiscrimination
Santa Clara University is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action employer fully committed to achieving a diverse workforce and complies with all Federal and California State laws, regulations, and executive orders regarding non-discrimination and affirmative action. Applications from members of historically underrepresented groups are especially encouraged. For a complete copy of Santa Clara University’s equal opportunity and nondiscrimination policies, see

Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972
Santa Clara University does not discriminate in its employment practices or in its educational programs or activities on the basis of sex/gender, and prohibits retaliation against any person opposing discrimination or participating in any discrimination investigation or complaint process internally or externally. The Title IX Coordinator and Section 504 and ADA Coordinator is Belinda Guthrie, Director of Equal Opportunity and Title IX, 408-551-3043,, Inquiries can also be made to the Assistant Secretary of Education within the Office for Civil Rights (OCR). 

Clery Notice of Availability
Santa Clara University annually collects information about campus crimes and other reportable incidents in accordance with the federal Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Crime Statistics Act. To view the Santa Clara University report, please go to the Campus Safety Services website. To request a paper copy please call Campus Safety at (408) 554-4441. The report includes the type of crime, venue, and number of occurrences.

Americans with Disabilities Act
Santa Clara University affirms its' commitment to employ qualified individuals with disabilities within the workplace and to comply with the Americans with Disability Act. All applicants desiring an accommodation should contact the Department of Human Resources, and 408-554-5750 and request to speak to Indu Ahluwalia by phone at 408-554-5750 or by email at

Posted: 09/30/2020