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Director, Lewis Walker Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations

Western Michigan University
Kalamazoo, Michigan
Pay is commensurate with qualifications and experiences, combined with an excellent benefits package
Date posted
Jan 23, 2024

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Position Type
Executive, Executive Directors
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time

Western Michigan University invites applications for a fiscal year, faculty appointment as Director of the Lewis Walker Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnic Relations. The Lewis Walkers Institute as an endowed institute is a campus and community leader committed to expanding understanding of the relationship of race and ethnic relations on all aspects of how we interact and engage across multiple academic and social contexts. The selected candidate will be eligible for hire at the rank of Associate or Full Professor within an academic college, with the opportunity for tenure upon appointment. This position will report to the Associate Provost for Equity-Centered Initiatives in Academic Affairs and will assume principal responsibility for directing the activities of the Lewis Walker Institute.

Major Duties

  • Actively facilitate individual or group collaborative research and professional development relationships between WMU faculty members and colleagues from other national and/or international academic institutions.
  • Foster interdisciplinary research, either applied or translational, in collaboration with relevant national and/or international community-based organizations, agencies, and institutions.
  • Advance team-based internal and external funding proposal development, proposal submissions, and grant management to include relevant faculty members.
  • Research agenda with impactful national research projects, leveraging a strong background in research methodologies and a commitment to creating real-world change and impact.
  • Program planning, implementation, and assessment.
  • Obtaining external funding for research grants and demonstration projects.
  • Collaborate with Advisory Council to advance the Walker Institute Mission.
  • Working with representatives of agencies, organizations and institutions in the Greater Kalamazoo Community.
  • Hiring, development and review of staff.
  • Budget and other resource planning and management,
  • Fundraising and the development of pertinent external constituents.
  • Development and execution of a strategic plan on regular intervals.
  • May be requested to teach up to two courses per year to support LWI curriculum.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications

  • A Ph.D., doctorate, or terminal degree in a related field from an accredited institution.
  • Demonstrated experiences and expertise in effective leadership.
  • Demonstrated strong knowledge of best practices regarding team management and effective communication.
  • Demonstrated background in research and scholarship with experience in diverse research methods and relevant statistical analyses expertise.
  • An established track record in applying for and securing internal and external funding.
  • Demonstrated cross-cultural competence and global experience through either international research expertise and/or abroad practice experience (e.g., global research partnerships, international projects, etc.).
  • Demonstrated record of building and maintaining successful academic, community, governmental, non-governmental, and/or corporate partnerships.
  • Experience in being an active part of a diverse and inclusive group of faculty, staff, and student leaders, focused on advancing social, economic, racial, and environmental justice through practice, research and scholarship.
  • Evidence of prior publications in books, academic journals, and/or presentations at national and/or international conferences.
  • Professional experience in international or global settings (teaching, consulting, and/or research).
  • Interpersonal skills to be able to engage with WMU communities internally and externally
  • Eligible for tenure at the rank of Associate or Full Professor upon appointment.

Desired Qualifications

  • Globally recognized for leadership and practice, research and scholarship, as well as mentorship in most of the following areas: human rights, social economics, racial, and/or environmental justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion, cross-cultural competence, and/or cultural humility, psycho-social wellbeing, etc

Western Michigan University offers generous benefits to its employees including health, dental, vision, life and disability insurance, retirement, and tuition discount for the employee and tuition remission for eligible dependents. To access information about the specific benefits available for this position, go to:

Application credentials will be accepted until the position is filled.
Expected start date of July 1, 2024.

The University
Western Michigan University is a nationally recognized research university classified as high research by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. WMU offers nearly 250 academic programs to students pursuing degrees through the doctoral level. About 21 percent of its nearly 18,000 students are enrolled in graduate course work. The University’s Strategic Plan 2022-2032 defines our five core values as community-engaged, discovery-driven, equity-centered, learner-focused, and sustainability-guided. WMU has identified the following priorities: academic excellence; community building; diversity, equity, and inclusion; internationalization; research and creative scholarship; sustainability; and well-being. For more information on the University’s vision and strategic plan, please visit .

Visionary Western Michigan University graduates made history in June 2021 by donating $550 million to the WMU Foundation, the largest gift for a public institution of higher education in U.S. history. The contribution is being called the Empowering Futures Gift. President Edward Montgomery indicated a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion was at the center of donors’ wishes, and the belief that inclusive education empowers people and communities to create bright futures for all. The gift will fund scholarships, advance medical education and research, support faculty expertise, and advance student-centered initiatives.

Lewis Walker Institute
The mission of the Lewis Walker Institute is to engage in teaching, research, and service to promote: (a) Understanding of race and ethnic relations, (b) Appreciation of diverse peoples and cultures of the U.S. and other nations, and © More equitable and inclusive communities and institutions

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