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Week of October 3, 2011

Eight staff members, 
six staff teams receive 
diversity leadership awards

Recipients of the third annual Distinguished Diversity Leaders Award (DDLA) recently were honored at a breakfast ceremony in Palmer Commons.

The Sept. 27 event included remarks from Laurita Thomas, associate vice president for human resources. Anthony Walesby, associate vice provost and senior director of the Office of Institutional Equity, along with members of the award committee, presented the awards.

Recipients of individual Distinguished Diversity Leaders Awards are honored at a breakfast ceremony in Palmer Commons. Individual recipients (front row, from left) are Shá Duncan Smith, Barb Bernard Butler, Robbie Townsel-Ransom, Anna Schnitzer, (back row, from left) Jen Wegner, Robert Scott, Toby Citrin, and Carrie Landrum. Photo by Eric Bronson, U-M Photo Services.

“We are proud and grateful to honor those who strive to make our university community a place of inclusion,” Walesby said. “Valuing diversity truly helps make a difference at Michigan. We thank all honorees for contributing their talents, their passion, and their life-long commitment, and are proud to honor these staff members as Distinguished Diversity Leaders.”

The eight individual awardees are: Barb Bernard Butler, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation; Toby Citrin, Department of Health Management & Policy, School of Public Health; Shá Duncan Smith, Center for Global & Intercultural Study; Carrie Landrum, Office for Student Conflict Resolution; Anna Schnitzer, Taubman Medical Library; Robert Scott, College of Engineering (CoE) Multicultural Initiatives; Robbie Townsel-Ransom, Housing Multicultural Affairs Program; and Jen Webner, CoE Office of Student Affairs.

The six team awardees are: Summer Enrichment Program Team, School of Public Health; Applied Physics Team; Growing Allies Team, Division of Student Affairs; Developing Cultural Competencies for Nurses Project Team, UM-Flint Nursing; Counseling and Psychological Services, Division of Student Affairs; Library Diversity Committee, University Library.

“The work that you do creates environments where people thrive,” Thomas said, addressing the award recipients. “And for that, you make the University of Michigan, and the broader world that we touch, a better place.”

Established in 2008 through the initiative of Thomas and Lester Monts, senior vice provost for academic affairs, the DDLA is co-sponsored by the Office of the Provost and University Human Resources, and administered by the Office of Institutional Equity.

The award recognizes individual staff members and teams for their accomplishments and provides a monetary prize — $1,000 for individuals, $2,500 for teams — to be used towards professional development activities. Staff members on all campuses and in the U-M Health System are eligible.

An online nomination form for the Fourth Annual Distinguished Diversity Leaders Award is available at A call for nominations will be made in late fall.



Katherine Weider, creative arts producer, School of Art & Design, on offering advice for students: “You can’t always imagine your future. I think you have to trust that your loves and your interests will eventually lead you to the right place.”


“Photographer as Witness: Proof Enough?” with Jill Vexler, 7-8:30 p.m. Oct. 11, Harlan Hatcher Graduate Library Gallery in Room 100

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