Final diversity candidate presents vision

By By Ana Breton

By Ana Breton

The search for a new associate vice president of diversity comes to an end today as the last candidate for the position will present her vision for the U.

Lisa Flores, associate professor in the ethnic studies program, will speak at an open forum today in the Union Theatre at 4 p.m.

Flores is seeking to replace Karen Dace, who resigned last October and will leave this February to become the deputy chancellor for diversity, access and equity at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Flores’ vision focuses on the enhancement of diversity through faculty and student recruitment and retention. This, she said, will promote the climate in which diverse ideas are engaged and “diverse populations can find spaces of learning.”

Flores wrote in her letter of interest that enabling diversity “requires constant effort and vigilance.”

“Still, it is work that must be done,” she said. “In a large part, the work of diversity requires strong leadership and a strong scholarly foundation.”

As the co-chairwoman of the Women’s Week Committee and director of Chicana/o studies, Flores helped design the annual celebrations that “bring in voices that would spark conversation and inspire action.”

Conversation is also a large focus of Flores’ campaign.

“I would be dedicated to continuing the conversation,” she said. “More specifically, I envision a campus in which ‘diversity’ is understood in numbers and in ideas.”

Flores’ candidacy came late in the race; she added her name to the running at the last minute because she “struggled with the very real dedication to the daily work of diversity” that the position demanded.

Her forum presentation is open to everyone. The winning candidate will be announced at a later date.