The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Branch Named Associate Chancellor for Equity and Inclusion

Anna Branch

Enobong (Anna) Branch, associate professor of sociology, has been appointed by Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy to the position of associate chancellor for equity and inclusion and chief diversity officer.

“Through her academic research on race and gender as well as her professional activities on and off campus, Professor Branch has demonstrated a profound commitment to issues of inclusion and equity,” said Subbaswamy. “The need for such leadership has never been greater given the national emergence of hatred and intolerance that we must all confront and reject. Our campus will undoubtedly face our own challenges in the coming academic year, and Professor Branch’s experience, knowledge and insight will bring new perspectives to our campus’s continuing effort to focus on these critical issues.”

Branch previously served as the chancellor’s faculty advisor for diversity and inclusive excellence, a position that is now eliminated. In her new role, Subbaswamy said Branch will provide strategic leadership for campus diversity efforts.She will build on institutional momentum and articulate a vision to promote an institutional culture at UMass Amherst that values and supports diversity and inclusion. Branch will work with campus leaders to develop diversity, inclusivity and equity goals and provide guidance on national best practices to accomplish them. She will serve as a member of the university’s senior leadership team and is responsible for nurturing a positive campus climate for students, staff and faculty.

“I am honored to lead our efforts to define and pursue aspirational goals for diversity and inclusion,” said Branch. “The campus community weighed in honestly in our 2016 Campus Climate Survey. There is much work to do to cultivate a campus community that is welcoming and inclusive for all. The many voices and perspectives reflected in the survey show our complexity and our promise. We can create a campus community where all can thrive if we live out our campus values to form and strengthen socially just learning and working environments that foster a culture of excellence through diverse people, ideas and perspectives. This is important work that we can achieve if we work together.”

» Read the full story here.

August 18, 2017