UW System Board of Regents to present 15th annual Diversity Awards on Feb. 10 | Madison365
The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will honor winners of the 15th annual Regents’ Diversity Awards on Friday, Feb. 10. The award is for people and organizations that provide support for students from underrepresented and marginalized backgrounds, and each recipient of an award is given $7,500 to continue carrying that mission forward.
In a statement released by UW Systems, Regent Héctor Colón praised the winners of the awards in saying, “We are proud to recognize these people and programs for their profound impact in areas of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Students, faculty, and staff of all backgrounds are benefiting from their dedication to building partnerships and expanding opportunity.”
Those who were awarded also were judged based on their ability to affect long-lasting and effective change, ability to adapt and reconfigure with feedback for growth, attention to intersectionality across different areas, and in the work done with other people or organizations both within and outside the UW system.
One recipient is Dr. Rickie-Ann Legleitner who is an associate professor of English, adviser for women’s, gender, and sexuality studies, inclusive excellence action plan coordinator, and interim executive director of equity, diversity and inclusion at UW-Stout.
“Dr. Legleitner has been recognized for outstanding contributions as a teacher, scholar, and LGBTQ+ individual and advocate, offering her time and expertise to university and UW System colleagues while serving as an advocate and adviser for students,” an announcement by UW Systems states. “She collaborated with university leadership to create an Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Unit and EDI Office at UW-Stout. She also helped develop the EDI Team with representatives from each campus governance group to ensure campus constituent feedback. She revised the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGSS) minor and serves as an adviser for the program.”
Another individual recipient of an award is Dr. Lori Kido Lopez, professor of communication arts and director of Asian American Studies Program at UW-Madison, who strives to build diversity, equity, and inclusion across areas of UW-Madison.
According to a statement released by UW Systems, Dr. Lopez, “…has been instrumental in supporting the university’s Asian, Pacific Islander, and Desi American (APIDA) Student Center, which serves hundreds of students each year. As co-chair of the Campus Diversity and Climate Committee and co-chair of the College of Letters & Science Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, Lopez developed new diversity, equity, and inclusion reporting mechanisms to help build a campus culture of accountability and continual improvement.”
The third recipient is a program from UW-River Falls that has been running since 1999, the Upward Bound Program. A statement released by UW Systems details their accomplishments by saying, “Under Director Bee Vang, the program cultivates a network of peers, professionals, and community members to leverage support and high-impact practices for success, providing a framework for students to succeed at a college level prior to arriving on a college campus. The program builds positive peer support and cohorts. Participants enter into the four-year program as the 9th-grade cohort and are encouraged to bond and identify supportive and trusting peer groups. The program also emphasizes leadership development, career/professional development, and intersection with individuals of different identities.”
The committee made up of Regent Colón along with Regent Angela Adams, Regent Ashok Rai, and Regent Brianna Tucker, also expressed recognition of other nominees for the awards.
Nominees for individual recipients of the Regents’ Diversity Award were Meagan Strehlow at UW-Green Bay, Laura Franklin at UW-Platteville, Judy Young at UW-Stevens Point, and Dr. Pilar Melero at UW-Whitewater.
Nominees for programs were the PEOPLE Program at UW-Madison, the Campus Climate Department at UW-Platteville, and the School of Biology, Chemistry, and Biochemistry at UW-Stevens Point.