June 29, 2021

Dear Members of the Connecticut College Community,

I am writing to bring you up to date on the search for the next dean of institutional equity and inclusion. It has been an intensive process—and a good one—with the very competitive market for chief diversity officers across the country making this search unfold a bit differently than most.

To review: the search committee considered applications from a number of promising candidates, some of whom ended up receiving offers from other institutions before we could invite them for a campus interview. In the end, as you know, we brought two candidates for virtual campus visits — one before Commencement and the other a few weeks later. The second, Kijua Sanders-McMurtry, Vice President for Equity and Inclusion at Mount Holyoke College, came for her virtual interview on June 16 and returned for an in-person visit last week. An offer was extended to Kijua and, following a period of reflection, she let us know that she had decided to remain at Mount Holyoke.

This is, of course, disappointing news. But we will carry on. Now that summer is upon us, we plan to take the next couple of months to rebuild the candidate pool and then recommence the search at the beginning of September. Our search consultant from Witt Kieffer is continuing to support us in this effort. I have asked our excellent search committee, too, to stay on until the process is complete. I want to thank the co-chairs Jefferson Singer and Maria Cruz-Saco, as well as all the members of the committee—Debo Adegbile ’91, Hubert Cook, Ricardo Lombera ’22, Meera Narayanan-Pandit ’23, Analisse Rios, and Bryana White—for all the energy they have dedicated to this important process. I hope you will join me in thanking them, too.

I appreciate your participation thus far and I look forward to your continued involvement in the fall.

Katherine Bergeron