You are on page 1of 1

February 13, 2020

Dear Mayor Warren:

Thank you for your letter (and article) of February 5, 2020 and the concerns you raise about the climate
at the College at Brockport. These issues are of great concern to me, and the entire SUNY System. I am
aware of the situation on the campus and it is disheartening to learn that you feel our students, faculty
and staff of color do not feel welcome. This is not acceptable and I want you to know that my
commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion is unwavering, and I do not take their trepidation lightly.

In response to the developing situation at Brockport, I sent a delegation of staff from the Office of
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion on February 3, 2020, led by Dr. Teresa Miller, Sr. Vice Chancellor and
SUNY System Chief Diversity Officer, to listen to concerned students, faculty and staff, and reflect their
concerns to the Brockport leadership team. They met with over fifty individuals, who spoke to them
candidly about the mood on campus, and their disappointment with the lack of minority representation
across the faculty, staff and administration.
Issues raised during those meetings will be addressed. These include meeting measurable goals and
outcomes for the campus, such as: (1) creating an accessible and effective bias reporting mechanism,
consistent with the campus’s strategic diversity and inclusion plan; (2) reporting out to the campus
progress made on the strategic diversity, equity and inclusion plan and (3) reviewing the demographics
of Brockport’s faculty and staff, to identify departments and units that have little or no racial/ethnic
diversity, and devising a plan to eliminate these “diversity deserts.” President Macpherson will be
intentional about personally building relationships with Brockport’s students, faculty and staff of color.
Finally, I asked one of SUNY’s most experienced chief diversity officers (CDO), Dr. Rodmon King (CDO at
SUNY Oswego) to work with President Macpherson and her leadership team, including the new interim
chief diversity officer, Dr. Lorraine Acker, to create a more inclusive, safe and diverse environment at the
College of Brockport. Dr. King will join Dr. Acker as a member of the President’s Cabinet and report to
me regularly on the progress made toward achieving the goals and outcomes I have outlined for the
campus. I have asked Dr. King to conduct an assessment of these actions and deliver to me by end of
April 2020.
I plan to visit Rochester in the near future and would welcome the opportunity to sit down with you and
discuss how we can continue to work together to better serve the citizens of Rochester through access
to quality and affordable higher education. I remain committed, as does SUNY, to prioritizing diversity,
equity and inclusion on our campuses. And if at any time an issue arises that imperils this core mission,
we will fix it. Our collective communities deserve nothing less.

Sincerely yours,

Kristina M. Johnson, PhD.


Chancellor, State University of New York