Diversity and Inclusion Expert Dr. Damon A. Williams Elevates Conversations About Inclusive Excellence at Universities Across the United States


ATLANTA (Oct. 21, 2019) – Award-winning diversity, equity and inclusion expert Dr. Damon A. Williams is elevating conversations about inclusive excellence at colleges and universities across the United States.

Williams recently completed a two-day residency at the University of Indiana, where he reached over 1,000 students, faculty and staff, and delivered a landmark report about campus climate culture at California Polytechnic State University, sharing ideas about how to move forward strategically to embed inclusion within the institutional leadership structures. He also led inspiring discussions about inclusive excellence at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, Agnes Scott College, Clemson University, The College of New Jersey and the University of Denver.

“I’m focused on helping colleges and universities create a welcoming environment, where cultural differences are valued for the contributions they bring to the educational experience on and off campus,” said Williams, Chief Catalyst for the National Inclusive Excellence Leadership Academy and the Center for Strategic Diversity Leadership and Social Innovation. “I’m deeply honored to advise, support and inspire higher ed leaders to facilitate positive change.”

Over the summer, Williams led the National Inclusive Excellence Leadership Academy (NIXLA), a five-week, online higher education leadership development program he founded and designed for experienced leaders who are responsible for thinking strategically about their institutions’ change agendas.

The program is dedicated to helping participants boost their strategic diversity leadership skills, disrupt the status quo at their institutions and become innovators around issues of diversity, equity and inclusion. NIXLA graduated 60 fellows representing 30 universities across the United States.

“My vision is to provide higher education leaders with the tools to transform the landscape and to facilitate strategic diversity leadership,” he said. “It’s imperative that colleges and universities improve their campus climate, strengthen faculty diversity and facilitate curriculum reform in order to meet the challenges of the future.”

Over the past two years, Williams has taken his speaking tour across the country, engaging in residencies at more than 100 academic institutions. He has influenced leadership teams at universities across the nation and is directly shaping the ways academic institutions move forward strategically with regard to inclusion initiatives.

One of the architects of the Inclusive Excellence model in higher education, Williams has been sparking conversations about diversity and leadership on college campuses across the country for decades. He founded the Division of Diversity, Equity & Educational Achievement at the University of Wisconsin Madison and developed the Division of Multicultural and International Affairs at the University of Connecticut, both of which serve as models of success for institutions of higher education nationwide.

Williams is the author of Strategic Diversity Leadership: Activating Change and Transformation in Higher Education, which offers a groundbreaking paradigm for leading diversity efforts and inspiring organizational change in higher education, and The Chief Diversity Officer, which is one of the nation’s first books on Chief Diversity Officers.

A visionary, inspirational leader, Dr. Damon A. Williams is one of the nation’s most acclaimed experts in strategic diversity leadership, youth development, corporate responsibility, educational achievement, social impact and organizational change. The author of Strategic Diversity Leadership: Activating Change & Transformation In Higher Education and The Chief Diversity Officer, Williams is a global thought leader who has worked with more than 1,000 colleges and universities, Fortune 100 companies, foundations and government agencies. He serves as a Senior Scholar and Innovation Fellow with Wisconsin’s Equity and Inclusion Laboratory (Wei LAB) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is a sought-after keynote speaker, strategist, educator and social impact leader. Williams has received a number of awards, including the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education’s Inclusive Excellence Award of Leadership and the University of Michigan Bicentennial Leadership Award. For more information, visit drdamonawilliams.com.