In June 2020, President Kathy Murray assembled a new task force on inclusion. The Whitman College Inclusion Task Force is chaired by Thomas Witherspoon, vice president for diversity and inclusion, and is charged with working to make Whitman a more inclusive and equitable community, where every member can share a sense of belonging. The task force will examine systems and structures within the college through an equity and inclusion lens.

The task force is composed of three small teams, one focused on faculty, one on staff, and the third on students. The small teams will spend time listening to and examining the specific concerns of marginalized communities. Additionally, the small team will offer recommendations for building a more inclusive campus environment for these communities. Each small team includes one student, one faculty member, one staff member, and a member of the president’s cabinet. Committee members, excluding senior level officers, will be compensated.

The teams will spend time developing an understanding of the current concerns within our college community for their specific population. They will review past criticisms with fresh eyes and create opportunities for community members to voice additional concerns and offer potential solutions in writing as well through community listening sessions. They will use all of that information to develop an action plan that they will share with the president’s cabinet by July 30, 2020. President Murray has asked that the proposed actions be prioritized based on their potential for significant and immediate impact, with a goal of launching the next steps before the beginning of the fall semester.

Task Force Members

  • Gaurav Majumdar, Associate Professor of English 
  • Telara McCullough, Director of Human Resources 
  • Gabby Rose, Sophomore from Illinois 
  • Barry Balof, Faculty Chair 
  • Nate Boland, Associate Professor of Chemistry  
  • Laura Sanchez, Director of the Intercultural Center 
  • Erik Scott, Sophomore from Texas
  • Kazi Joshua, Vice President for Student Affairs
  • Andrew Johnson, Associate Director of Residence Life & Housing
  • Adeline Rother, Senior Adjunct Assistant Professor of General Studies and Composition
  • Maria Martinez, Sophomore from Florida
  • Thomas Witherspoon, Vice President for Diversity and Inclusion 
  • Heidi Pitts, Internal Communications Strategist
  • Sneh Chachra, Sophomore from California and President of ASWC