Augusta University’s Dr. Tiffany G. Townsend has been named vice president of organizational culture and chief diversity officer at Purdue University Global, effective July 1.
Townsend joined Augusta University in fall 2019 as the chief diversity officer. She also served as an associate professor in AU’s Department of Psychological Sciences. During her tenure, Townsend worked to enhance communication, reduce redundancy, increase consistency and improve efficiency among entities across the campus.
“Since joining the AU family, my goal has been to foster an inclusive culture through an intentional focus on institutional change,” said Townsend. To that end, Townsend oversaw the administration of a university-wide campus climate survey, the findings of which provided a framework for DEI efforts at the university and were integrated into the university’s new strategic plan.
“Dr. Townsend has accomplished much during her time at Augusta University,” said Augusta University executive vice president for academic affairs and provost Neil MacKinnon, PhD. “From leading our campus climate survey to offering countless training programs for our faculty and staff to working with Dr. Kathy Browder on the new initiative to recruit and retain under-represented faculty, Tiffany has left a rich legacy. She did this all while maintaining a faculty appointment and conducting research in the College of Science and Mathematics.”
In addition, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion has grown in staff size, established a task force responsible for creating safe virtual spaces for listening, sharing and processing campus concerns from faculty and staff, launched a robust campus training program, and worked with community leaders to celebrate the legacy of Drs. Isiah and Justine Washington by founding a named scholarship, all with Townsend at the helm.
“It has been a pleasure working at AU and I am proud of the very important work that we have been able to accomplish regarding diversity, equity and inclusion at the institution,” said Townsend. “Although this is a very exciting new chapter in my career, I will miss the relationships that I have developed during my time at the university. This departure is bittersweet for me because I know there is more work to do, but I take comfort in knowing that we have established a solid foundation for this work to continue.”
Dr. Garrett Green will lead the office as interim chief diversity officer beginning July 1. He will also continue to serve as the director of Multicultural Student Engagement.
“I am honored to serve in this capacity in the interim, and I thoroughly look forward to continuing the meaningful work began by Dr. Townsend to further develop our diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives across the campus community,” Green said.
Serving the university since 2014, Green aims to provide education, training and programming to foster awareness of diversity and inclusion among Augusta University community members and cultivate inclusive academic and social environments.
“Dr. Green has a proven track record leading our multicultural student engagement efforts and, in this past year, assuming additional duties for the African American Male Initiative,” said MacKinnon. “He is an educator and has served as co-champion with Dr. Townsend for the interwoven theme of diversity, equity and inclusion for our university strategic plan, Creating a Legacy Like No Other.”