Stephens College has named Shaashawn S. Dial ’98 to the newly created position of Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion reporting directly to the Office of the President. 

A former member of the Stephens College Alumnae Association Board, Dial will serve as an advocate, advise Human Resources, plan and execute cross-campus training programs, oversee assessments of campus climate, serve as the Title VI (Civil Rights) Officer, and ensure College policies and processes are consistent with best practices related to diversity, equity and inclusion.

“I am excited to return home to Stephens,” Dial said, adding that the College is serious about and committed to the vision of making Stephens’ communities more diverse, equitable and inclusive.

Dial is the former director of equity and affirmative action and staff liaison to the Harrisburg Human Relations Commission for the City of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. She previously contributed her skills, work ethic and passion in roles as coordinator, director, adviser and adjunct professor in human social services, Harrisburg Area Community College (HACC), broadcast radio, and Central Pennsylvania College.

Dial graduated from Stephens with a B.A. in Philosophy, Law and Rhetoric. While a student, she worked as an information specialist, serving as a public relations spokesperson and ambassador for the student body. She was also co-captain of the soccer team and a radio announcer. Dial went on to earn a Master of Public Administration from Shippensburg University in Pennsylvania, and a graduate certificate in academic advising from Kansas State University. She is a doctoral candidate at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania, currently in the dissertation phase for a degree in Administration and Leadership Studies. 

Dial is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Pennsylvania Association of Broadcasters Award, the Coalition of Black Trade Unionists Community Service Award and the Change Agent Award from Amiracle4sure, Inc. 

She has volunteered as co-chair of Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s Commission on LGBTQ Affairs and president of the board of directors for the LGBT Center of Central Pennsylvania, among others. 

She founded Voycetress Media, LLC in 2015 to empower individuals and organizations through workshops and training on equity, diversity and inclusion. She is the author of a CD and two books, and is a member of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.

“I am honored by the opportunity to work with all members of Stephens' communities: prospective students, residential students, continuing education students, online students, staff, faculty, Board of Trustees and fellow alumnae in addition to the larger Columbia, Missouri, communities,” Dial said. “I am humbled by the opportunity to do this life-affirming, enriching, engaging, complicated and necessary work.”

“We are thrilled to have such an illustrious alumna return to campus in such a critical function,” said Stephens College President Dianne Lynch. “Shaashawn’s record in this area is exemplary and she has been an involved and dedicated alumna. Her energy around inclusion and her understanding of our culture and commitment make her the ideal candidate to move our diversity, equity and inclusion efforts forward. We look forward to the impact we know she will have on our community.”

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