New chief of diversity appointed

Deborah Stanley-McAulay has been appointed Yale’s chief diversity officer, the University announced Monday.

The selection of Stanley-McAulay followed a monthlong search for a new diversity leader a month after Nydia Gonzalez left the University after two years to take care of her ailing mother in Texas. Stanley-McAulay, director of Yale’s Organizational Development and Learning Center, will be able to hit the ground running at the Office of Diversity and Inclusion because she has worked for more than a decade at Yale and is a lifelong resident of New Haven, administrators said.

Stanley-McAulay said she hopes to organize a diversity-sensitivity curriculum for Yale management and a possibly gender- and race-blind talent and succession management system.

But because Stanley-McAulay has no previous experience in the Office of Diversity and Inclusion and said she has not spoken to Gonzalez since her departure, she said she still needs to settle into for the chief diversity officer role.

And although Stanley-McAulay was a planning team member of the Yale African-American Affinity Group and had worked with Gonzalez in order to bring about business education methods to University diversity tactics, her resume indicates that she does not have much experience with explicit diversity initiatives. And she said in an interview Monday she will still have to touch base with all of the diversity leaders at the University — some of whom she has not yet met — to fully understand the dynamics of her role.

The position was created in 2006 in response to worker input and administrators’ desires to catch up to other rival institutions in universitywide diversity initiatives, Vice President for Human Resources and Administration Michael Peel said. The chief diversity officer will work as head of the diversity infastructure and will work to augment administrative staff diversity, said Peel, who announced Stanley-McAulay’s appointment in a memo to Yale staff.

Though she will work with both faculty and students, Stanley-McAulay’s primary focus, will be on diversity among the administrative staff, Peel said. Yet when Gonzalez came in, the institutional focus was the diversity of the entire University, including students.

Schwartz said Sunday he will leave in December, so as chief diversity officer, Stanley-McAulay will report directly to Peel, although Associate Vice President of Human Resources Robert Schwartz was Gonzalez’s supervisor.

Stanley-McAulay said she will work on enhancing her predecessor’s existing diversity initiative with her learning background.

“There’s a great opportunity to bridge education and awareness and build that into the diversity strategic plan,” she said in the interview.

Stanley-McAulay had been the interim chief diversity officer since August, when Gonzalez applied for a Caregiver Leave of Absence and later resigned a couple weeks later. Once Peel started work in October, he and Stanley-McAulay worked together to create a short list of several internal candidates. Peel, with the input of other senior Yale administrators, made the final decision to choose Stanley-McAulay.

A search for the replacement of the ODLC director is currently underway, Peel added.

“Given her depth of experience in the Yale environment and the track record of leadership she’s developed while she’s been here, I concluded she was the perfect person to take out diversity efforts to the next level,” Peel said in an interview.

Peel added that although there was no permanent chief diversity position in place for the last two months, “it doesn’t in any way stop the progress that is occurring in the University.”

In 1995, Stanley-McAulay came to Yale in order to serve as a manager of the Office of Professional Services, which manages training, among other duties. Before her University post, she worked in business education.

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