After more than a year, Clark College has a permanent vice president of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.
Rashida Willard, who has held the position on an interim basis for 17 months, was promoted into the permanent spot effective Thursday.
“(Willard) has earned the respect of her peers, our students and the community as a strong and effective leader,” Clark College Interim President Sandra Fowler-Hill said in a news release.
The announcement comes in the midst of scrutiny over how Clark College treats its staff and students of color. Now-retired President Bob Knight put a halt to the vice president hiring process in May after months of searching, claiming none of the candidates at the time met the “minimum qualifications” for the position.
Willard holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration and is pursuing a doctorate in education. She graduated from the Social Justice Leadership Institute for the Washington State Community College System in 2017-2018, and sits on the Vancouver Police Chief’s Diversity Advisory Team.
“I am deeply invested in this work, and am passionate about creating inclusive, safe and welcoming environments where all students have maximum opportunities to succeed,” Willard said in the news release. “I am eager to move forward in community and collaboration, building on our team’s momentum of the last several months.”