Last week, a dozen IHP Equity Advocate graduates were welcomed into the fold by President Paula Milone-Nuzzo and their Equity Advocate peers after completing a comprehensive training program. They are part of the third cohort who will help fulfill the IHP’s strategic priority of increasing the number of faculty from underrepresented groups. 

Launched in January 2020, the Equity Advocate training program involves participants taking approximately eight hours of online asynchronous modules and two synchronous workshops, after which time they have the option to serve as an Equity Advocate for faculty and academic leader searches.

“The role of the Equity Advocate is to ensure a fair, consistent process that minimizes the impacts of cognitive and structural biases,” said Sarah Welch, Director Human Resources. “Among their responsibilities are being able to explore assumptions, norms, and practices that might hinder full consideration of each candidate’s credentials, and contributing to position announcement development, recruitment, screening, interviews, and reference checks.”

All members of a faculty search committee are considered active advocates for the MGH Institute’s commitment to create a diverse and inclusive community. Several advocates have already participated in faculty searches. The program was developed by the Equity Advocate Steering and Curriculum Committee during the fall of 2019. 

The new cohort members are: Rosemary Caron, Dean, School of Healthcare Leadership; Carla Donati, Assistant Dean of Administration for School of Nursing; Heather Easter, Director of Academic Operations in Office of the Provost; Ellen Foley, Executive Assistant and Project Specialist in Office of the Provost; Maninder Kaur, Assistant Professor of Physical Therapy; Kimberly Mace, Director of Online Prerequisites Programs, Assistant Professor of Health Professions Education; Tara Mansour, Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy & Academic Fieldwork Coordinator; Brian Reis, Senior Human Resources Business Partner/Analyst; Mary Samost, Assistant Professor, School of Nursing; LaToya Trowers-Bell, Health Administration Program Director; Michelle Wallace, Office of Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion; Laura Wolford, Assistant Professor, Communication Sciences and Disorders. 

Equity Advocate Steering and Curriculum Committee members include: Katikie Appleberry, Talent Acquisition Partner, Human Resources; Peter Cahn, Associate Provost for Academic Affairs; Clara Gona, Associate Professor, School of Nursing; Emile Larrivee, Assistant Professor, Communication Sciences and Disorders; Keshrie Naidoo, Interim Chair, Physical Therapy Dept.;  Kimberly Truong, Chief Equity Officer, Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI) Office; and Sarah Welch, Director, Human Resources.