Plenary Session, Thursday, September 19, 1:45 p.m., Graduate Providence
As Boston University’s inaugural associate provost for diversity & inclusion, Crystal Ann Williams provides leadership, vision, management and strategic direction for initiatives that promote diversity, access and inclusion across BU’s Charles River and Medical campuses. She works with academic and administrative leaders on efforts to build the inclusive excellence of BU faculty and academic appointees, to nurture a positive campus climate, and to enhance diversity within the pathways through higher education. Williams arrived at BU in October 2017 from Bates College, where she’d served since 2013 as associate vice president for strategic initiatives, professor of English and a senior advisor to the president, developing programs and strategies that resulted in increased diversity among the faculty, staff and students while enhancing engagement across campus. She was previously a faculty member and the inaugural dean for institutional diversity at Reed College (2000-2013), leading multiple faculty-driven initiatives to create an infrastructure to support diversity and inclusion. Williams is an award-winning poet, the author of four books, and the recipient of several artistic fellowships, grants and commissions. She is consistently recognized as a thought leader on diversity in the arts, and has helped to lead and convene programs at the state and local levels involving arts, civic and philanthropic leaders. She holds a B.A. from New York University and an M.F.A. from Cornell University.