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GTU Board Establishes Select Committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness

Authored by: 
GTU Communications

The GTU Board of Trustees is delighted to announce the formation of a select committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness (DEI). With this step, the Graduate Theological Union aims to further embody and live out its commitment to nurturing a healthy, vibrant campus culture of pluralism. The effort is spearheaded by the GTU Board’s Vice Chair William Glenn, who has brought together a committee that includes a “wide variety of perspectives on DEI”  from across the GTU, with a goal of offering “a set of recommendations to the board to make the GTU an even more diverse and inclusive place.”

The 17-member committee includes a mix of current students, faculty members, alumni, trustees, and the interim president, and comprises broad representation across genders, races, ethnicities, and religious and spiritual traditions. Glenn sees the newly established committee as “a robust and representative group of individuals who have a deep love for the GTU as their common bond.”

"The Select Committee on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusiveness brings together a robust and representative group of individuals who have a deep love for the GTU as their common bond."
--William Glenn, Vice Chair, GTU Board of Trustees 

The committee will be cochaired by PhD student and former board member Kristin Stoneking, together with current board member Shawna Hamilton. Stoneking serves as pastor of Epworth United Methodist Church in Berkeley and is currently pursuing PhD studies at the GTU. She is the former national executive director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR) which, under her leadership, took a lead role in the Black Lives Matter movement and sponsored the Give Refugees Rest Campaign, which worked with people at both the US/Mexico border and the Syrian/Turkish border.

Cochair Shawna Hamilton is a GTU trustee and senior program officer at Pacific Foundation Services, which works with philanthropists to support nonprofits and help communities thrive. Hamilton has worked previously with the Silicon Valley Community Foundation and served as director of operations for Seeds of Africa.

The select committee will begin its work in Fall 2020 and aims to present recommendations to the Board of Trustees at the February 2021 meeting. The committee will be working with experienced consultants to help inform and enhance their work, whom the co-chairs are already in the process of interviewing.

The Board of Trustees looks forward to the recommendations of the committee, and to implementing them in order to strengthen the leadership, life, and mission of the GTU, and to support a diverse interreligious scholarly community guided by equity and respect for all.

  • Kamal Abu-Shamsieh, Director, Interreligious Chaplaincy, GTU alumnus
  • Rosemary Bray McNatt, SKSM president, trustee
  • Kelly Colwell, PhD candidate, GTU staff         
  • Mahjabeen Dhala, PhD candidate                   
  • Shawna Hamilton, Co-Chair, trustee               
  • Susie Hoganson, board chair, trustee
  • Kristin Stoneking, Co-Chair, PhD student, former trustee                     
  • Uriah Kim, GTU Interim President, CDF, GTU alumnus
  • Dale Lum, Esq., trustee                                                     
  • Gerdenio Manuel SJ, JST faculty, JST alumni            
  • Valerie Miles-Tribble, CDF, ABSW   
  • Peter Rogers OP, DSPT president, trustee                    
  • Rita Sherma,  CDF, Center for Dharma Studies              
  • Sam Shonkoff, faculty, Center for Jewish Studies       
  • David Vasquez Levy, PSR president, trustee
  • Eric Sias, PhD candidate
  • Devin Zuber, CDF, Center for Swedenborgian Studies             

(updated 3/20/2020)