UTA announced a search committee was tasked to recruit a vice president for the newly formed Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion on Aug. 19. This came as one of the university’s eight new strategies to promote a more diverse, welcoming and inclusive campus community, according to previous Shorthorn reporting.
Three candidates were announced Feb. 8 and asked to give a virtual open-forum presentation to discuss their vision for the office, and the final presentation was held Feb. 26.
After reviewing the candidate’s presentations, reading their resumes and discussing our thoughts, The Shorthorn editorial board decided to endorse the first of the three candidates, David Bradley.
Bradley has a background in diversity and inclusion administration and has been a tenured faculty member in the sciences. He has served as a faculty diversity officer at California State University, Fullerton, since 2019, according to his resume. In 2018, he served as vice president for Inclusion, Diversity, + Equity at Smith College, and he worked as chief diversity faculty-administrator at Vassar College from 2015 to 2018.
He has a Ph.D. in engineering and a Bachelor’s in physics and in gender and women’s studies.
UTA’s College of Engineering and College of Science’s graduate programs have been ranked among the U.S. News and World Report’s 2021 “Best Graduate Schools.” His experience in sciences makes him relatable to students pursuing science degrees.
Similarly, his background in gender and women’s studies makes him uniquely equipped to handle diversity, equity and inclusion efforts. And his personal perspective as a gay, Mexican American, first-generation college student from a working-class background makes him able to connect with diverse UTA students.
When discussing who we felt would be the best candidate, Bradley’s degrees in physics and gender and women’s studies were noted as reflections of his ability to relate to UTA’s student body. His familiarity and experience with diversity, equity and inclusion programs stood out to us above the others.
During his presentation, Bradley extensively discussed existing campus organizations, like Multicultural Affairs, that promote diversity, equity and inclusion, which led us to believe he did more research than the others on what strides the university is already taking.
His body language was more relaxed and engaged. His personality stood out, and he seemed more relatable than the other candidates. We endorse Bradley because he represents multiple communities and is focused on fostering inclusivity in all areas — not just race, but gender, ethnicity, spoken languages, socio-economic status, immigration status, disability and sexuality.
We encourage students, faculty and staff to review the information about the candidates, read their resumes and watch the presentations on the UTA website to form your own opinion about each candidate. Reach out to search committee chair Jim Spaniolo to voice your opinion as a decision on who will be chosen should be made soon.
The Shorthorn Editorial Board is made up of opinion editor Katecey Harrell; Editor-in-Chief Cecilia Lenzen; associate news editor Spencer Brewer; Samantha Knowles, life and entertainment editor; sports editor Adrian Rodriguez; news reporter Thevnin Rumende; and copy editor Jill Bold.