‘Cultivating an Atmosphere of Inclusiveness’

Chancellor Presents Diversity and Community Awards

Group photo
Chancellor May and Associate Executive Vice Chancellor Reed stand among the recipients of the 2018 Chancellor’s Achievement Awards for Diversity and Community.

“At UC Davis, we acknowledge and honor exemplary faculty, staff, students and community members who help to cultivate an atmosphere of inclusiveness. They speak to the heart of what makes our campus and region a great place to work, teach, learn, play and live.”


The UC Davis Principles of Community, which are among the underpinnings of the Chancellor’s Achievement Awards for Diversity and Community, get some recognition of their own next week — during our annual Principles of Community Week, Feb. 26-March 3.

Networking luncheons will be held on the Davis and Sacramento campuses, while the Davis campus also will be the venue for Multicultural Awareness Night, the Latino Film Festival and Dialogue on Allyship.

See the schedule.

This is part of what Gary S. May had to say Feb. 6 in presenting the 2018 Chancellor’s Achievement Awards for Diversity and Community to eight individuals — in the categories of Academic Senate, Academic Federation, undergraduate, graduate student, postdoctoral, staff, special recognition and community — and three departments.

The awards ceremony took place in the early evening at the Chancellor’s Residence. “This event is a perfect way to cap my workday,” May said. “The spirit of these awards speaks to me deeply on a personal and professional level” — as a college student who remembers well the feeling of being the only person of color in the lecture halls and laboratories, and as an engineering professor and dean working hard to change that, especially for students from ethnic groups that are underrepresented in the STEM fields.

“UC Davis’ strong commitment to diversity is one of the key reasons I wanted to come here,” May said. “I wanted to be part of a community that deliberately recruits, retains, embraces and celebrates people with backgrounds, gender identities and skill sets that are underrepresented in higher education. I wanted to be part of a community that honors the promoters of socio-economic mobility who we are celebrating today.”

Here are the 2018 award recipients, with comments about them condensed from nomination forms and remarks from the awards ceremony, delivered by Rahim Reed, associate executive vice chancellor, Office of Campus Community Relations. You can read more about the awardees here.

Individual award recipients

Academic Senate: Natalia Deeb-Sossa
Natalia Deeb-Sossa mugshot

Academic Federation: Jorge Garcia

Jorge Garcia mugshot

Undergraduate: Samantha Chiang

Samantha Chiang mugshot

Graduate Student: Hung Doan

Hung Doan mugshot

Postdoctoral: Lauren Libero

Lauren Libero mugshot

Staff Award: Lina Mendez

Lina Mendez mugshot

Special Recognition: Barbara Ashby

Barbara Ashby mugshot

Community Achievement: Cassandra Jennings

Cassandra Jennings mugshot

Honorary awards

The campus introduced this category last year to recognize departments and divisions for taking the initiative to include training in diversity and inclusion as part of organizational and staff development.

“These efforts are in support of the UC Davis Diversity and Inclusion Initiative, and it is our hope that the campus community will be inspired by these organizations’ proactive measures in operationalizing our Principles of Community, and in striving towards a more diverse and inclusive UC Davis,” Reed said.

The newest honorees:

UC Davis Health Information Management Division, group photo
UC Davis Health Information Technology Division award recipients: From left, Stefan Toma, project manager, information technology (IT) departmental services group; Katie Holland, associate business partner, IT human resources (Holland recently joined UC Davis Health human resources, as a manager); Myrene Abot, supervisor, IT human resources; Richard Falcon, supervisor, IT client engineering; Charron Andrus, technical project manager, IT enterprise applications; and Daniel Marenco, supervisor, IT interface operations. Not pictured: John Cook, interim chief information officer.

UC Davis Health Information Technology Division — It has worked with UC Davis Health’s Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion the last two years to offer diversity and inclusion training to 70 IT supervisors. Management training includes “The Impact of Unconscious Bias on Workplace Teams” and “Understanding Generational Differences” to help improve communication, teamwork and employee engagement. Individual teams are encouraged to arrange their own trainings, say, with speakers from the Harassment and Discrimination Assistance and Prevention Program, or HDAPP. The Office for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion will host four Diversity and Inclusion Dialogues for the IT division to assist in building a culture of lifelong learning in diversity and inclusion.

Editor's note about the photo caption and award summary above: As originally published, we gave the incorrect title of the unit being honored. It is the UC Davis Health Information Technology Division, as corrected above. We apologize for the error.

Eloy Gutierrez-CCC mugshot

School of Medicine Postbaccalaureate ProgramThis is a one-year program designed to help educationally and/or socio-economically disadvantaged students become more competitive applicants to medical school. The program partners with the Office of Campus Community Relations for sessions on unpacking oppression, microaggressions and stereotype threat, and weaves these topics into conversations about understanding diversity, and to further develop students’ critical thinking skills. The Postbaccalaureate Program participates in the Campus Community Book Project to further inform students’ understanding of equity issues and how they translate to the health care fields. Elio A. Gutierrez, program coordinator, accepted the award, which also recognized Jose A. Morfin of the Department of Nephrology.

Student Housing and Dining Services, group photo
Student Housing and Dining Services: From left, Rahim Reed, associate executive vice chancellor, Office of Campus Community Relations; Corey Pope, assistant director; Catrina Wagner, associate director; Duane Lindsay, executive project analyst; Connie Quintero, training coordinator; Emily Galindo, associate vice chancellor, auxiliary services; and Gary S. May, chancellor.

Student Housing and Dining ServicesAll leads and managers undergo professional development training on “Understanding Diversity,” “Anti-Bullying,” Cross-Cultural Communication” and “Conflict Management,” all meant to encourage staff to live and practice the Principles of Community at work, among colleagues, and with the campus community members they serve. Student Housing and Dining Services also ensures that their student staff, especially those who work in advising capacities, are exposed to the Campus Community Book Project, integrating the chosen book as part of student staff training.

Photos by Linda Mijangos/Office of Campus Community Relations

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