A Trio of Black Scholars Who Have Been Appointed University Diversity Officers

Jane Irungu is the inaugural vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion at Utah State University. She had been serving as the associate provost of inclusive excellence at the University of Oklahoma. Earlier in her career, Dr. Irungu was director of the Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence at the University of Oregon.

Dr. Irungu earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya. She then went on to earn a master’s degree and a Ph.D. from the University of Kansas. She is the author of Engaging College Students for Success: International Students in U.S Higher Education Institutions (LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing, 2011).

Todd Manuel was appointed vice president of inclusion, civil rights & Title IX at Louisiana State University, effective September 1. He has been serving as director of organizational health and diversity for Entergy Inc. Since January 2021, Manuel has also served as vice president for diversity, equity, and inclusion transformation for the Edison Electric Institute, the association that represents all U.S. investor-owned electric companies.

Manuel holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Louisiana State University. He earned a juris doctorate from the Southern University Law Center.

Rochelle D. Smith has been selected as Saint Louis University’s next vice president for diversity and innovative community engagement. She has been serving as the inaugural associate dean of diversity and inclusion and associate chief diversity officer at the Yale School of Medicine. Before Yale, Smith worked at Washington University in St. Louis for 22 years, most recently as the assistant provost for diversity initiatives.

Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Chicago State University. She earned a master’s degree in health behavior research from the Washington University School of Medicine.

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