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February 09, 2016

Presidential Diversity Award recipients recognized

award winners with Joel Seligman, Vivian Lewis and Kathy Rideout
The recipients of the 2016 Presidential Diversity Award were recently honored at a reception at the Witmer House. This year’s recipients, pictured with Vivian Lewis (left), vice provost for faculty development and diversity, and President and CEO Joel Seligman (right) are Janice Holland (back, left), senior HR representative and diversity specialist/facilitator and community liaison; the One Community program, including Sequoia Kemp ’16 (back, middle), Jessica Guzman-Rea (back, right), director of the Paul J. Burgett Intercultural Center, Nicholas Kasper ’17 (front, left), and Shahyan Rehman ’16 (front, center); and Kathy Rideout (second from right), dean of the School of Nursing.

The recipients of the 2016 Presidential Diversity Award are Janice Holland, senior HR representative, diversity specialist/facilitator, and community liaison; the One Community program; and Kathy Rideout, dean of the School of Nursing.

The awards were created in 2009 by President and CEO Joel Seligman to recognize faculty, staff, students, units, departments, or teams that “demonstrate a commitment to diversity and inclusion through recruitment and retention efforts, teaching, research, multicultural programming, cultural competency, community outreach activities, or other initiatives.”

This year’s winners were chosen from among seven nominees who were recommended by their colleagues. Each award includes a $2,500 prize. Individual award winners receive half and designate half to support the budget of a program or department of the winner’s choice; team award winners designate the entire $2,500 prize to the program or department of the team’s choice.

More information about the award is available at

Janice Holland
Holland has led several initiatives to bridge the gap between the University and the City of Rochester, along with a variety of community-based organizations, by addressing issues of disparity.

The value she places on diversity, inclusion, and multiculturalism led Holland to provide job coaching to staff and students struggling to find their connection to the University. She has initiated numerous initiatives to serve the Greater Rochester community, such as an “interview boot camp” that teaches today’s interview styles and trends to underrepresented and seasoned displaced workers.

One Community
The Paul J. Burgett Intercultural Center coordinates the One Community program, which is held during orientation. The purpose of the program is to provide first-year students with the chance to spend time thinking carefully about their own identities; hear narratives of the experiences of others; and provide tools to address situations that arise from difficult topics such as race, class, ability, gender, sexual orientation, religion, and other identity markers. Learn more at

Kathy Rideout
Under Rideout’s leadership, the School of Nursing received New Careers in Nursing Scholars awards from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for all seven rounds of funding. The school has provided more than $900,000 in scholarships to 91 students from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds.

Rideout has contributed significantly to recruiting racial and ethnic minority faculty, with the number of underrepresented minority faculty doubling in the past few years. By approving a budget for the School of Nursing’s Council for Diversity and Inclusion to organize school-wide activities—the only diversity committee that has its own budget within the University—she has strengthened collaboration University-wide.

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