Vice President of Talent, Culture, and Diversity

California, United States
Salary Commensurate with experience
Apr 05, 2021
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

University Background:
The mission of California Lutheran University is to educate leaders for a global society who are strong in character and judgment, confident in their identity and vocation, and committed to service and justice. Founded in 1959 in beautiful Ventura County, the university has an enrollment of about 4,000 undergraduate and graduate students who come from across the nation and around the world from a diversity of backgrounds, cultures and faiths. As a federally recognized Hispanic-Serving Institution, Cal Lutheran is looking for candidates with a dedication to and success in working in diverse communities. The university is committed to an inclusive learning and work environment that values individual differences and respects each person’s dignity.

Basic Function:
The Vice President of Talent, Culture, and Diversity (VPTCD) is a new senior-level leadership position at California Lutheran University. The incumbent will serve as the Chief Diversity Officer who collaborates with colleagues across the institution in aligning Diversity, Equity, Inclusion (DEI) programs and services with the university's mission and values. This work will necessitate that the VPTCD works closely with the VP of Mission and Identity (VPMI) to ensure that the Lutheran values of higher education such as grace, generosity, service, justice, and inclusivity frame the DEI programs and services offered at California Lutheran.

The Vice President of Talent, Culture, and Diversity (VPTCD) provides strategic oversight to a newly constituted division that will benefit from structural integration. The newly configured division includes the Department of Human Resources (HR); the Department of Mission and Identity; and initiatives associated with the University's federal status as a Hispanic Serving Institution or HSI.

As the leader of the aforementioned Division, the VPTCD anticipates and addresses—in an integrative way— macro-level Diversity-, HR-, and Institutional Culture- related needs. The incumbent communicates these needs proactively to leaders throughout the organization to reinforce the mission and values of a forward- focused Lutheran university. (See ELCA Rooted and Open on the Mission and Identity department website)

Representative Duties:
Participates as a member of the President’s Cabinet in charting the future of the University and assuring continuous improvement in overall University effectiveness, efficiency, inclusiveness, diversity, equity, inclusion and integration. (E)

-Serves as an inspirational leader who brings diversity, equity, and inclusion principles to the discussions and decision-making process. Leads the development, implementation, evaluation, and continuous improvement of the University Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Plan in collaboration with the university community and its leadership team.

-Shares employee recruitment and retention strategies that support the inclusive efforts of the institution.

Works with the President and Cabinet to recruit, retain, lead, and reinforce mission-driven cultural changes. (E)

-Leads, with the cooperation of VPMI and Cabinet, the university-wide effort to establish a culture of belonging as shaped and nurtured by ELCA values, especially grace, generosity, and inclusivity.

-Co-writes and co-edits university statements, webpage content, and other routine and high-stakes communique regarding issues of diversity.

-Helps the university clarify and live into its commitment to diversity.

Oversees the bias incident reporting system, using data from the system to inform proposed remedies.

-Works with the VPMI to position Cal Lutheran as a leader in interfaith dialogues, programs, celebrations, inquiries, and collective community action.

-Works with the Director of Hispanic-Serving Initiatives to ensure that California Lutheran makes good on its promise not only to recruit, retain and authentically serve Hispanic and other traditionally underserved students.

-Works with the Assistant Vice President for HR (AVPHR) and Provost to recruit and retain faculty and staff with diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds; diverse gender identities, expressions, and sexual orientations; diverse ideological perspectives.

Works to integrate established and emerging DEI efforts across the institution so that they
are part of coherent, mission-driven strategy. (E)

Though this will take time, initial steps toward this goal will include:

-Working with colleagues across Cal Lutheran’s campuses (such as those in the Center for Global Engagement, the Center for Cultural Engagement and Inclusion, Student Life, the Community Service Center, Faculty Development and Inclusive Excellence, Campus Ministry, Congregational Relations, HSI, International Student Admissions, Affinity Groups, undergraduate and graduate student associations, Allies in Stem, and Center for Equity and Justice etc.) to create a calendar of DEI related events.

-Meeting with interested and engaged parties across the campuses to understand and advise the programs they intend to create and implement.

-Working with sponsors of DEI events to develop a strategic calendar of programs that optimizes participation.

-Working with University Relations to promote these events through print media, digital channels, and social media.

-Sharing best practices and other strategies that strengthen identity-based affinity groups and DEI-related councils such as the Equity Leadership Council and the President’s Diversity Council.

-Serving as a resource for colleagues who lead or participate in faculty and staff identity based affinity groups.

-Serving as a resource for staff and faculty who advise and mentor student identity-based affinity groups.

-Researching and administering employee engagement surveys, campus climate surveys, and other instruments related to culture, diversity, and inclusion; uses resulting data to shape needed programs and generate desired outcomes.

Works to reinforce DEI efforts and other mid-21st century priorities as part of student recruitment and retention efforts. (E)

-Proposes to colleagues in Admissions, Marketing, and Student Success the types of programs, services, and strategies that will have a direct impact on the recruitment, the financial aid packaging, the retention success of students.

Works to connect DEI and HR efforts as part of the ongoing effort people-related initiatives. (E)

-Participates in the talent review process to ensure talent is sufficiently developed to cover organizational gaps and that retention strategies are formulated and implemented.

-Anticipates competitive marketplace and legal/regulatory environment impacting human capital development, and diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives of the University culture.

-Works with the AVPHR to develop mission-and values-driven plans, policies, and programs responsive to these needs.

Provides consultation to university managers in relation to HR best practices, leadership development, organizational design and effectiveness, performance management and coaching (E).

-Proposes to colleagues in Human Resources and the Provost Office the types of programs, services, and strategies that will have direct positive impact on the recruitment, and retention of faculty and staff.

-Monitors assessment to determine program effectiveness.

-Works with the AVPHR, VPMI, and Provost to ensure the success of faculty and staff with diverse backgrounds by offering necessary onboarding, training, orientation, support, mentorship, services, and programs to reach Cal Lutheran’s goals as a diverse and inclusive institution.

-Serving as a consultant to the Provost, Deans, and faculty leaders to incorporate DEI expectations and metrics into appointment, rank, and tenure criteria

Designs and helps implement systems that reward achievements (e.g., staff awards, diversity awards) and promote accountability (e.g., bias-reporting system). (E)

-Works with the AVPHR, Provost, and Deans to recommend and implement employee recognition and “non-monetary” rewards programs; monitors for effectiveness improvement of employee satisfaction, engagement and retention.

-Engages in discussions with staff and faculty at different levels, creating development plans and opportunities, providing mentoring opportunities, and holding people accountable according to related policies and procedures.

-Conducts listening sessions to gather informal feedback from the faculty and staff including items that need timely attention, recognition, and appropriate actions.

(E) = Essential Duties

Knowledge Of:
Familiarity with national/regional labor market trends; effective labor forecasting; human talent recruitment, onboarding, training, and promotion

Understanding of contemporary human resources management diversity, equity, and inclusion trends

Appreciation and/or knowledge of the changes needed in higher education and the strategies necessary to launch, manage, and improve those changes at a university affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America.

Ability to develop and maintain strong working relationships across the entire organization and with community partners

Interest in and appreciation for the value of shared governance, transparency, fairness, and collaboration in a university setting

Tenacity to deal with complex structures and tasks over a period of time and be able to influence others who work outside of the direct supervisory lines

A sense of humor and humility that keeps it all in perspective

Ability To:
Engage with diverse staff and leadership to promote trust, collaboration, and partnership between departments and levels of leadership.

Develop and monitor indicators of organizational culture and engage employees and senior leadership to create organizational change.

Demonstrate strong leadership skills and a track record for managing “up, down, and across”

Provide exceptional communication, both written and oral, and interpersonal skills to establish and maintain a presence in a fast-paced and demanding work environment

Lead with political acumen, good persuasion/negotiation skills

Facilitate and build consensus

Exhibit keenly developed human relations skills: a hardworking, caring, and compassionate leader; a friendly, self-confident, creative, and enthusiastic colleague; a flexible and yet disciplined manager; and a true team player who is not territorial but knows how to cooperate and delegate to get the job done

Employ excellent analytical and problem identification and resolution skills in dealing with complex human resources and cultural issues

Use organizational skills with a keen attention to detail and the ability to effectively manage multiple priorities and projects within given timelines

Minimum Qualifications:
A Master’s degree (or equivalent) in business administration, change management, organizational theory, human resources management, educational administration, employee relations, or related field from accredited institutions is required.

Seven years of increasingly responsible experience in areas such as DEI, HR, change management, employee training and development.

Preferred Qualifications:
Advanced degree earned at an accredited college or university in areas listed in MQ section above.

Five years of managerial experience, with supervision of personnel and budget, in areas such as:

Planning, implementing, integrating and evaluating DEI programs and services

Professional training and development related to cross-cultural competency

Talent management that includes recruiting, retaining, and developing diverse individuals and teams

Developing organizational cultures that promote collaboration between and among multiple groups of stakeholders

Change management of a large and complex organization

Initiating, leading, and sustaining cultural change that fosters a sense of inclusion, respect, and belonging

DEI or Human Resource policy development, program assessment, and evaluation

Licenses and Other Requirements:

Working Environment:
Professional office, indoor and public engagement environment.

Application Procedure/Special Instructions:
Note, in your cover letter please address:
• how you will integrate DEI efforts with the mission and values of California Lutheran University
• your experience designing, structuring, and integrating DEI efforts across multiple departments as a part of coherent, institution-wide strategy
• your experience designing and implementing employee recruitment and retention strategies specifically aligned with the mission of the organization.

The first review date for applications is scheduled for April 28, 2021. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled. For earliest consideration please apply before the first review date.

To apply, visit

California Lutheran University is committed to providing equal opportunity in employment for all persons, regardless of race, religious creed, color, national origin, ancestry, physical disability, mental disability, medical condition, marital status, sex, age, sexual orientation, genetic information, gender, gender identity or expression, or any other basis protected by applicable law. No person shall be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination in any program, activity or facility of the University on the basis of these factors in a manner consistent with applicable federal and state laws, regulations, ordinances, orders and rules, and University’s policies, procedures, and processes.

Upon request, reasonable accommodations in the application process can be provided to individuals with qualifying disabilities. Please contact the Human Resources Department for further information or to request an accommodation.