Dear Members of the Williams Community,

I am pleased to announce that Shawna Patterson, Ph.D. has been appointed Director of The Davis Center. She will assume the role on January 9, 2017. Shawna brings a wealth of experience to the role, as she focuses on approaches that enhance the academic, social and civic experiences of community members, especially students, in a manner that involves collaborative partnerships and innovation. We are excited to leverage her experience working on issues of diversity, equity and social justice and collaborating with and in support of students, faculty and staff.

Most recently, Shawna served as a House Dean at the University of Pennsylvania; she also worked at Michigan State University, Penn State University, and Florida State University. Over the years, Shawna worked on the implementation of intercultural programming, advised students, responded to critical incidents on campuses, facilitated diversity trainings and collaborated with community stakeholders to co-sponsor discussions around social justice issues. At Michigan State University, she supported diverse student populations, developed inclusive residential curricula for residence halls and advised student organizations. She also worked in collaboration with stakeholders across campus to respond to critical incidents of bias, prejudice and sexual assault and harassment. At Penn State University, she oversaw the safety and security functions for the residential housing system, and worked to foster an environment that valued diversity and demonstrated a commitment to social justice. While there, she also helped develop a curriculum around global citizenship and reflective praxis.

Shawna has also been a lecturer and instructor at Florida State University, Michigan State University and the University of Pennsylvania. She received a doctorate from Florida State University where her dissertation was titled, Love and hip hop: The meaning of urban reality television in the lives of Black college Women. Her published articles appear in the International Journal of Doctoral Studies, Alabama Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Law Review and Journal of Student Affairs at New York University.

Please help me welcome Shawna to the Williams community and support her as she collaborates with students, faculty and staff to contribute to the intellectual life of The Davis Center.

I thank the search committee, Vice President Steve Klass (chair), Michael Ding ’18, Raquel Douglas ’19, Katie Kent, Molly Magavern, James Manigault-Bryant, Ngoni Munemo, Claudia Reyes ’18, D. L. Smith, and G. L. Wallace, for their diligence and commitment to the process. In addition, I thank the dozens of students, staff and faculty who took the time to participate in this incredibly important search.

Best,

Leticia Smith-Evans Haynes, Ph.D.
Vice President
Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity
Williams College | Williamstown, MA
(P) 413.597.4376

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