nicole hodges persley (vpro)

Nicole Hodges Persley will serve as acting vice provost for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging, according to an email from Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Barbara Bichelmeyer.

Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Barbara Bichelmeyer announced in an email on Wednesday that Nicole Hodges Persley will become the vice provost for diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging.

Persley, who had been serving as interim vice provost since January, was one of four national finalists for this position.

“It became clear through the search process that Nicole’s social justice experiences and background, her vision and passion for meaningful and lasting change, her collaborative leadership style, and her understanding of KU make her an ideal choice to continue leading our DEIB efforts,” Bichelmeyer said in the email.

According to Bichelmeyer, Persley has worked with every academic and administrative unit to ensure that there is progress with DEIB and that it is integrated with everything that is done on KU’s campus. Bichelmeyer said that Persley also helped the campus to evolve into a more diverse, equitable and inclusive environment.

“As she takes on this role, Nicole will continue to focus on outreach, engagement and strengthening relationships with students, faculty and staff,” Bichelmeyer said.

Persley will work with campus leaders to ensure DEIB takes precedence within financial plans and in hiring and employee support.

“I am excited to continue working with Nicole and all of you to achieve our vision of an inclusive and nurturing community where all Jayhawks feel they belong,” Bichelmeyer said.