Chief Educational Equity Officer
This position acts as the Colorado Department of Higher Education authority to support Department EDI goals and promote the vision of a Colorado higher education community that is inclusive and deliberate in erasing the persistent equity gaps in educational attainment across all student demographic categories. The Chief Educational Equity Officer (CEEO) serves as a catalyst and advocate for educational equity initiatives and systemic change at Colorado’s institutions of higher education (IHEs) to develop quick and sustaining results that support historically underrepresented and marginalized students.
The Chief Educational Equity Officer (CEEO) reports to the Executive Director of the Department of Higher Education (Department), is a member of the executive leadership team, and has oversight of a .5 FTE, the Senior Advisor to the Office of Educational Equity (SA-OEE), and additional members of the CDHE staff contributing to the Office of Educational Equity. This position collaborates with IHEs to be a strategic partner, consultant, and resource in advancing institutions vision, leadership, planning, and oversight for programs, policies, and procedures related to improving equity, diversity, and inclusion. The CEEO advocates on behalf of the Department in advancing the values of equity and inclusion across the state and represents Colorado in national dialogue opportunities.
The CEEO is aligned with the vision, mission, and values of the Department, and effectively balances the ethos of the Department with the expert application of state and federal rules and regulations designed to protect the rights of constituencies and safeguards an effective ecosystem for employment. The CEEO is dedicated to a dynamic working environment, invested in the social and emotional well-being of all, and fulfilled by working in an engaging, supportive environment.
Essential Duties & Responsibilities
- Serves as an internal and external ambassador for Colorado postsecondary educational equity initiatives and student success outcomes through equity-minded strategic planning, data analysis, and best practice guidance.
- Designs, champions, and implements CDHE’s diversity and inclusion strategies that drive Department performance, employee engagement, and cross-functional collaboration.
- Develops program goals and objectives; program metrics and analytics; strategic and tactical short and long-term plans; communications; and reporting requirements/audiences.
- Participates as a member of the CDHE executive leadership team and provides expert guidance to CDHE leaders in matters related to EDI.
- Participates, with the ED of the Department, on activities with the EDI Cabinet of the Governor of Colorado to ensure alignment with State initiatives.
- Partners with the Attorney General’s office to monitor campus implementation and compliance with all applicable laws, regulations as they pertain, but not limited to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act;
- Serves as the Department of Higher Education’s contact for the complaint process as it relates to the Policy on Affirmative Action, Equal Opportunity & Diversity (PAA);
- Interprets and advises on current and applicable legislation, guidelines, compliance agencies' interpretations and court decisions;
- Serves as liaison to outside agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Office for Civil Rights (OCR);
- Assists the Department of Personnel and Administration (DPA) in the review and improvement of policies and procedures through an equity and diversity framework for recruitment, onboarding and continuous professional development of employees;
- Participates, as necessary, as the Department representative on committees and commissions related to EDI and found in state statute.
State-Wide Partnerships with IHEs
- Serves as the face of the department for the prioritization of equity across institutions of higher education;
- Collaborates with IHE EDI leaders to establish a system of accountability in the area of equity-minded practices by identifying and implementing metrics for decision-making and evaluation; promotes and measures outcomes of race/ethnicity disaggregated by institution;
- Identifies and plans diversity, equity and inclusion training programs to raise awareness and develop best practices to cultivate a Colorado higher education culture of civility and respect;
- Facilitates monthly meetings and provides support for the Equity Champions Coalition (ECC) alongside co-chairs and lead champions to ensure strong representation and ongoing engagement with the Administration and legislature;
- Builds and develops partnerships at all IHEs to study results of their assessments of their campus climate, and uses results to assist with co-designing programs and interventions that improve the culture of inclusion and to strengthen college-wide functions, policies and communications;
- Partners with and engages faculty and staff in culturally relevant scholarship, practice and advocacy focused on achieving equitable outcomes across race/ethnicity and income;
- Builds and disseminates student-led equity initiatives to enrich the campus climate for BIPOC students;
- Builds and disseminates professional development initiatives to increase awareness of implicit-bias and systemic oppression, and promotes equity and inclusion values across faculty and administrators to support persistence and completion of all student populations; and
- Serves as a central repository for CO IHEs EDI efforts and works to disseminate information to IHEs.
- Serves as a resource for CO IHEs in addressing issues of equity in the recruitment and hiring of faculty.
- Earned doctorate or advanced terminal degree in relevant field of study;
- Experience working in an academic environment and demonstrated ability to affect systemic change and equity outcomes through policy and practice within that environment;
- A minimum of ten years of demonstrated leadership and success in developing and implementing equity, diversity and inclusion strategies, initiatives and programs, and engaging communities in dialogue and activities;
- A deep knowledge in the field of equity, diversity and inclusion, including current scholarship of the field, historical and social context, the vocabulary of the discipline and the complexities and intersection of issues in modern urban and rural communities;
- Current working knowledge of applicable laws as it pertains to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act; Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972; Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and Section 504 of the 1973 Rehabilitation Act;
- Strong data gathering, data analysis, problem solving and analytical skills;
- Solid history of policy work and collaboration with policy makers;
- An understanding of the dynamics of difference, privilege, and power, and possess the energy, enthusiasm, drive, emotional intelligence, diplomacy and gravitas necessary to achieve ambitious goals while balancing the needs of multiple constituencies; and
- Demonstrated experience in planning and prioritization of projects, programs and activities, using sound judgment while meeting organizational requirements and maintaining accountability.
- NOTE: The Department is exploring the appropriateness of the use of the term “chief” across all of our divisions. We will welcome the applicant to explore this perspective.
To be considered for this position, candidates must possess the minimum required qualifications listed above and submit the following: Cover letter and resume. Submit your completed application materials to:
Colorado Department of Higher Education
Attention: Human Resources
1600 Broadway, Suite 2200
Denver, Colorado 80202
This position is not governed by the selection process of the classified personnel system and is not part of the classified state personnel system.
Application Deadline: Position will remain open until filled. Application review begins immediately and position start is immediate. Employment is contingent on successful completion of a criminal background check.
The Colorado Department of Higher Education offers benefits for this position which include medical, dental, vision, and life insurance available to the employee and eligible dependents on a cost share basis between employee and the Department. Disability insurance is provided at no cost to the employee. Paid leave time is accrued at 14 hours per month for vacation leave and 10 hours per month for sick leave. There are 10 paid holidays in a calendar year.
Employees of the State of Colorado do not contribute to Social Security, but contribute to Colorado Public Employee Retirement Association (PERA)
The State of Colorado believes that equity, diversity, and inclusion drive our success, and we encourage candidates from all identities, backgrounds, and abilities to apply. The State of Colorado is an equal opportunity employer committed to building inclusive, innovative work environments with employees who reflect our communities and enthusiastically serve them. Therefore, in all aspects of the employment process, we provide employment opportunities to all qualified applicants without regard to race, color, religion, sex, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, pregnancy, medical condition related to pregnancy, creed, ancestry, national origin, marital status, genetic information, or military status (with preference given to military veterans), or any other protected status in accordance with applicable law.
The Colorado Department of Higher Education is committed to the full inclusion of all qualified individuals. As part of this commitment, our agency will assist individuals who have a disability with any reasonable accommodation requests related to employment, including completing the application process, interviewing, completing any pre-employment testing, participating in the employee selection process, and/or to perform essential job functions where the requested accommodation does not impose an undue hardship. If you have a disability and require reasonable accommodation to ensure you have a positive experience applying or interviewing for this position, please direct your inquiries to our Human Resource Director, at HR@dhe.state.co.us