Skip Navigation

Diversity Action Plan 4 High Performance

July 13, 2020

To the Campus Community,

There is an old saying; There are only two days in the year that nothing can be done. One is called "Yesterday" and the other is called  "Tomorrow" — fortunately we are in Today!

Let me pause for a moment and acknowledge each of you. Organizational culture change is not easy and can cause stress, therefore we are being extremely thoughtful and attentive to your input and perspectives. We recognize that during periods of change people wonder how they will be impacted. As society changes, as our institution changes, you may be focused on what you will lose, not what you will gain. You may also be thinking, "How will I be affected by this change? Will I benefit from it? Will I be able to learn what I need to know?" 

We also know that announcing change is not the same as implementing it. You may be concerned about the details on the process of implementing the change, "How are we going to do this? Is the plan realistic? How important is this change compared with other priorities? How will we measure success?"

collective impact graphicThis is why we are using the Collective Impact Model, which is a high-involvement leadership strategy to build and support Stony Brook’s commitment to a culture change. This model brings many voices to the table throughout the planning, decision-making and implementation processes. We are actively listening to all concerns in a thoughtful way that hopefully lets everyone know that they have been heard. It is important that you feel inspired and excited about the future and your role in the culture change.

The Diversity Plan has evolved into the Diversity Action Plan 4 High Performance (DAP4HP). We are no longer speaking conceptually nor are we framing things in terms of what we could do. We are actively "lifting off the pages" your recommendations and activities. Please know that challenges and obstacles will be addressed, and we will devote the time, support, and resources needed for resolution. It is critical that we thoughtfully earn and develop confidence in Stony Brook’s (and your) ability to successfully implement this culture change.

You may be wondering where "high performance" fits within diversity, equity and inclusion. As many of you know, I have a strong sports background that includes observing some of the most elite coaches in the world. When you are a high-performance coach, the first step is to establish a "stretch goal."  A stretch goal is a deliberately challenging or ambitious aim or objective such that the achievement is viewed as high performance. The second step is to assess where your performance is, relative to the stretch goal. The third and final step is to create a strategic plan that provides a pathway from where you are to the realization of the stretch goal. This process is not easy and must allow for a learning curve, therefore Nelson Mandela’s quote, "I never lose. I either win or learn," is very appropriate.

How does DAP4HP work?

Step 1: Assessment of our current performance - shifting a culture requires it first be understood.

  • Our 2015 Diversity Plan identified the following four overarching goals: 1) Improve the diversity of the Stony Brook Community through enhanced recruitment and retention; 2) Expand educational, research, healthcare and other efforts to ensure the Stony Brook students have the ability to thrive as members of the campus community and as global citizens in a diverse society; 3) Support the development of a campus climate that values DEI in a way that promotes the ability of the members of the community to thrive and achieve their individual goals; and 4) Establish a culture of accountability and assessment around diversity and inclusion initiatives and policies.
    • Over the last five years, we have collected baseline measures established through assessments, focus groups, surveys, testimonies, and workshops from various efforts across our campus.
  • Using the baseline data, DAP4HP translates the overarching goals into three concise action strategies to support our schools, colleges, centers, institutes, clinics and hospitals.
    • Strategy 1: Create an inclusive and equitable campus climate
    • Strategy 2: Recruit, retain and develop a diverse community
    • Strategy 3: Support innovative and inclusive scholarship, teaching and healthcare 
  • The action strategies are guided by the following evaluation and assessment goals to ensure accountability and transparency, and to support evidence-based decision making. We will create systems to track metrics assessing progress toward stated strategic objectives.
    • Evidence: Strengthen evidence base for informed decision-making, not only for what we want to hear, but what we don’t know and what we are missing, and for what our community thinks and feels.
    • Influence: Translate and disseminate policy-relevant and decision-relevant research and data to key groups and decision-makers to inform and guide the infusion of DEI into the fabric of our institution.
    • Action: Design and implement best research practices to achieve impact and goals.
    • Transparency: Communicate about what we are doing and how we are doing it in a transparent way, so that others trust that we are being objective and accurate with the way that data is collected, prepared and shared. This supports accountability for the work we are doing.

In addition, the Chief Diversity Office will provide continued foundational support and infrastructure for this work, as well as, oversee the implementation and evaluation of the campus wide plan.

  • The 2020-2021 academic year, I will work with leadership (and their diversity  groups) across the various colleges and hospitals to conduct a cultural analysis with various tools and resources for enhancing climate. It is important to note that the assessments will vary and be appropriate to the respective areas.

Step 2: Strategic pathway to bridge the gap – Here are some existing best practice tools and resources to get you started. Partnering with SBU Libraries, we are creating a rich repository of DEI strategic tools, articles, webinars, movies, etc., which will be available soon.

  • Guide to Allyship - by Amelie Lamont – An open source starter guide to help you become a more thoughtful and effective ally.
    • Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit Brown University - The Diversity and Inclusion Toolkit has been created to identify best practices for promoting diversity and inclusion. The toolkit provides guidelines for demonstrating an understanding of compliance, cultural awareness, respect for differences, and coaching for positive change towards inclusive practices for all identities. The purpose of this resource is to provide assistance for departmental leadership that seeks to diversify recruiting and establish best practices that respect individual unique attributes of each faculty member.
    • Enhancing Department Climate: A Guide for Department Chairs  University of Wisconsin-Madison - This document provides practical advice to address 8 common department-level climate concerns: 1) Lack of respect, consideration, and/or politeness 2) Insufficient sense of community or belonging 3) Lack of recognition, visibility, and/or value 4) Ineffective communication 5) Lack of support or inequitable access to professional development opportunities 6) Difficulties achieving balance between work and family or personal life 7) Illegal behaviors and demeaning, sexualizing, hostile, condescending language and behaviors and 8) Retention and/or tenure of women and minority faculty, staff, and students.
    • Guide to Best Practices in Faculty Mentoring Columbia University – Guide to Best Practices in Faculty Mentoring provides direction for departments to implement mentoring programs that are tailored to their faculty and departmental development needs. This Guide provides a framework for departments to develop mentoring programs, or improve formal and/or informal mentoring programs that are already in place. A checklist and logic model for academic units implementing mentoring programs are included as appendices.
    • Guide to Best Practices in Faculty Retention Columbia University – This guide is intended to help Department Chairs fulfill the University’s commitment to diversity and inclusion through best practices found to help retain faculty. The practices and strategies listed in this document were informed by case study reviews of best practices proven effective at several peer institutions; literature review of studies regarding barriers to the retention of faculty, particularly faculty of color and other underrepresented groups; faculty experiences at Columbia; and an examination of best practices across Columbia.
    • Guide to Creation of Departmental Equity Survey The Hunter College Gender Equity Project ( ) Some suggestions for metrics to gather and analyze are included here, as well as ideas for methods to use in gathering information about the department climate. (
    • Strategic Planning for Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Toolkit University of California, Berkeley - Strategic Planning for Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Toolkit to guide departments on achieving transformational change and developing departmental diversity plans. The toolkit includes an introduction to strategic planning, as well as a comprehensive guide of strategic planning steps. The toolkit outlines the following steps 1) Map Out Planning Process 2) Gather Information and Conduct Self-Assessment 3) Develop Vision – Set Goals, Strategies, Metrics 4) Review Plan with Equity & Inclusion 5) Adopt Plan and Communicate Vision and 6) Implement Plan. The toolkit includes planning tools (checklists, templates, worksheets) to assist departments in developing this 6-step strategic plan. Departments may download versions of the toolkit at:

Step 3:  Stretch Goal  

Evolve the culture of Stony Brook to more effectively advance a respectful and caring community that is far more than the sum of its parts. This is achieved by a deepened sense of inclusion based on shared values while helping the campus community realize the full benefits from diversity.

Upcoming Events:  

Community Dialogue on Structural and Systemic Racism and Discrimination Planning Group

  • This effort is supported by Center for Civic Justice, Department of Student Community Development, Office of the Chief Diversity Officer, and Office of Multicultural Affairs.
  • This group is comprised of (undergraduate) student leaders for students, which provides space to process and discuss the ongoing realities faced by our Black and Brown students, and to identify the needs of students moving forward.
  • They hosted a virtual town hall on June 24th, and continue to meet weekly to identify and present recommendations to SBU administrative leadership to implement.
  • They are finalizing their draft recommendations and will schedule a meeting with administrative leadership.   

Mourning, Healing and Understanding: A Community Vigil of Perseverance and a Call for Racial Justice

  • Prayers & Reflections in Unity, sponsored by the Interfaith Center for Stony Brook University, Office of the President of Stony Brook University, and the Chief Diversity Office
  • Wednesday, July 15, 2020 @ 11-12pm Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Zoom Vigil

Meeting ID: 932 5620 9599

Password: 282140

Stony Brook is actively negotiating a contract with a learning platform company for DEI . This will include an inclusive behaviors inventory, access to numerous learning modules, 24/7 tech support, and certifications opportunities.

3rd Town Hall – Healthcare Disparities and the COVID 19 Pandemic Impact on People and Communities of Color (Working Title)
Wednesday, July 29, 2020 @ 3-4:30 pm Eastern Time (US and Canada)

Far Beyond Podcast - Bridging the Racial Divide – Allyship (Working Title)
Thursday, July 30, 2020

I look forward to our continued partnership in ensuring that Stony Brook University is a just, equitable and compassionate campus community through our individual and collective efforts.  

Your Teammate,  
Judi Brown Clarke, PhD
Chief Diversity Officer