Albany Business Review Honors President Rodríguez as a Leader in Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

President Rodríguez was honored by the Albany Business Review on Friday. (Photo by Carlo De Jesus)

ALBANY, N.Y. (June 30, 2020) – UAlbany President Havidán Rodríguez was honored among the Albany Business Review’s “2020 Leaders in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion” during a virtual recognition ceremony on Friday morning.

New this year, the recognition is given to companies, organizations and individuals in the Capital Region that have shown exceptional commitment to promoting practices that advance diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace, community, and business leadership.

Along with President Rodríguez, honorees included:

  • Sujata N. Chaudhry, founder & CEO, Tangible Development
  • Anthony Gaddy, president & CEO, UpState New York Black Chamber of Commerce
  • Maureen O'Brien, president & CEO, NYSID
  • The Power Breakfast Club, a weekly meetup group of entrepreneurs, creatives and change makers in the Capital Region
  • Jennifer Oneal, studio head, Vicarious Visions
  • Barclay Damon, a local law firm

“Havidán Rodríguez has experienced firsthand how access to education — and access to scholarships — can take someone from poverty to prosperity,” said Albany Business Review reporter Chelsea Diana in a Q&A article. “His mission as president of the University at Albany is to help low-income, first-generation and underrepresented students much like himself navigate their paths through college and into a career."

Friday’s virtual recognition featured more than an hour of impactful discussions with honorees highlighting the work they are doing within the Capital Region and how others can make strides in their own businesses.

The event was sponsored by SEFCU and included hundreds of other local business and community leaders who were invited to attend and ask questions.

“I think [leaders] play a critical role in setting the tone in terms of how the institution or organization needs to be moving forward, particularly in its commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice,” said Rodríguez, during a panel discussion. “However, in addition to leaders setting the tone, this is something that needs to be woven into the fabric. It cannot depend solely, and exclusively, on the leader. In our case, it has to be a process where faculty, staff and students are actively engaged.”

The president also wrote an op-ed for the Albany Business Review on UAlbany’s role in helping to shape a fairer and more just society. You can read it here.

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