Diversity & Inclusion Committee Founding Members (4 of 5 members photos included in black and white headshots)

Introducing the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee

Who are we?

The Diversity and Inclusion Committee is a new CALL committee created as part of the new strategic goal to “Implement policies that ensure diversity, equity, and inclusion awareness, support, and initiatives.”

As a part of this new goal, we are charged with the following:

  1. To identify issues related to maximizing the diversity of CALL membership
  2. To recognize and celebrate the richness of an active, diverse membership
  3. To advise the Board on mechanisms and programs that encourage a diverse and complex membership
  4. To encourage active participation by the whole membership, including identifying barriers and how to remove them

What do we do?

As a new committee, and particularly a committee that is considering a topic as complex as diversity and inclusion, our goal for this year is to determine what actions we can take to meet our charge. Given the incredible work done by the other CALL committees to support members and promote the profession, we felt that one way we could meet this charge was by developing partnerships with other CALL committees and collaborating on projects. We began meeting with the chairs of other CALL committees, and we look forward to forging strong partnerships.

We also want to create channels for you, the members, to engage with us. We cannot do this work without the input and feedback from our members, so please be on the lookout for more information from us about ways you can reach us and share feedback. In the meantime, please do not hesitate to contact any of us with your questions, feedback, or ideas.

Meet the Members!

Now that you’ve met the committee, let’s meet our members! Each committee member was asked “What does DEI mean to you?” .

Ariel Scotese (headshot)
Ariel Scotese

Ariel Scotese: DEI means engaging in ongoing self-reflection and interrogating our internal biases and the ways in which the culture that we live in and grew up with impacted our assumptions and views. DEI work involves being uncomfortable sometimes and leaning into that discomfort in order to grow.

As we engage in that reflection individually, the work also involves thinking about how we can effect positive change in our environments. How can we leverage the privileges we have to create a welcoming and inclusive space?

Julie Pabarja (headshot)
Julie Pabarja

Julie Pabarja: It is giving a full spectrum of characteristics and thoughts a space where they have a voice without discrimination.

When we welcome these differences in our environment, we are giving ourselves the opportunity to listen to each other, reflect on our decisions, be open to change, become allies to those that need us, be part of difficult conversations and gain a better chance of understanding of each other.

Juanita Harrell (headshot)
Juanita Harrell

Juanita Harrell: It means that we are open and always willing to readjust, rethink and learn. That we are intentional with our choices and decisions. That we remain open, mindful, and welcoming to new ideas and issues. It means acknowledging that some things need to change and working together to change them.

Jonathan Hawkins (headshot)
Jonathan Hawkins

Jonathan Hawkins: Although organizations at every level do benefit from having diverse, equitable, and inclusive workforces, my interest in DEI goes beyond the idea of gaining some competitive advantage for businesses or institutions.

To me DEI is how organizations manifest the idea that every person has inherent value and dignity, totally unrelated to their backgrounds or identities, or their ability or perceived ability to contribute. Diversity, equity, and inclusion don’t just happen, sadly – it takes intentional action, and it is an ongoing and holistic process. My ultimate goal with DEI is to try to make the world a better place for all people, and to break down the systems of oppression that are standing in the way.

Lucy Kelly: DEI values mean daily processes of learning new things, realizing that short interactions mean limited information, increasing accessibility, honoring historical events by expanding public archives and resource guides, creating more mentoring programs, preventing further injustices and discriminatory practices, and facilitating more allyships for increased communication between people.