Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

WVC announces director of diversity, equity and inclusion

Media Contacts: Dr. Chio Flores, vice president of student services and enrollment management, 509.682.6805, or Libby Siebens, community relations executive director, 509.682.6436 (Mon. – Thurs.)

June 15, 2016

Erin TofteWenatchee Valley College is pleased to announce its continued commitment to diversity and equity by creating a critical new position, director of diversity, equity and inclusion. Erin Tofte-Nordvik, who has been serving as multicultural affairs coordinator and interim director of student programs, will step into the position to guide the college’s efforts to increase diversity and awareness. Tofte-Nordvik will oversee the WVC Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI), which includes international programs, college access services and the DEI Center.

Tofte-Nordvik has extensive diversity and equity experience in her studies and her work experience. She is bilingual in Spanish and English, and she received her bachelor of arts degree in law, societies and justice with a minor in human rights from the University of Washington in 2005. She served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Nicaragua from 2005-2007. She then went on to receive her Juris Doctorate and a certificate in international and comparative law from Willamette College of Law in 2011.

After law school, Tofte-Nordvik took a position in Central Oregon working with the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs and the Latino population to improve health equity in the region. For over three years, she helped to create diversity and cultural competency trainings for organizations and community groups. She also served on a regional health board as the equity and diversity representative, and she helped create policy to improve health throughout Central Oregon.

As the climate on a national and state level changes, WVC is excited to be at the forefront of the change. The college is committed to diversity and inclusiveness; 42 percent of the regional student body is Latino, the college district includes part of the Colville Confederated Tribes and WVC is designated as a Hispanic serving institution. The WVC Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion will work with the campus to increase understanding, access and success rates for underserved populations of students (including but not limited to racial or ethnic minorities, those who identify as LGBTQ, and students with disabilities). The office will also assist efforts for diversity and inclusion in the recruitment and retention of faculty and staff.

“We are each responsible for providing a college climate where students, employees and the public feel that they are welcome and an integral part of our community and each of our campuses,” said WVC President Jim Richardson. “Our success depends on us learning from each other and working together to achieve the mission and vision of the college.”

With this exciting expansion of duties at WVC, Tofte-Nordvik is looking forward to helping WVC become a leader in diversity and inclusion among community colleges in Washington.