Advancing GSA’s Mission Toward Greater Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion – [26 Aug. 2020]
Each year, GSA holds a leadership retreat to focus on critical issues for our Society. Such
concentrated time allows for in-depth learning, analysis, and discussion. This year’s retreat, held
on 22-23 August, was focused on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). Our aims were to evaluate
related activities in GSA’s 2019 Decadal Strategic Plan, to amplify our efforts with fresh
perspectives, and to reinforce our commitment to positive change. To achieve these goals, the GSA
Executive Committee and GSA staff were joined by 20 invited diversity leaders in the geosciences.
Helping to guide us through the process was experienced facilitator and expert trainer Dr. Nita
Mosby-Tyler of The Equity Project LLC , whose task it
was to help us identify activities likely to have a measurable and lasting impact.
Priorities identified for improvement during the retreat included four target areas:
- Communication and Transparency
- Mentoring and Support
- Revising the Nominations and Awards Process
- Creating Diversity in Leadership and Meetings Participation
We are distilling the wealth of recommendations and advice from the retreat into obtainable and
impactful goals to be shared soon. These goals will be integrated into our Strategic Plan, alongside
initiatives , activities, and committees focused on DEI efforts.
We, GSA’s president and president-elect, are confident that this will be a successful approach to
addressing issues of equity facing the geosciences and that actionable outcomes will position GSA to
move forward in meeting its goals in the most effective way. Most importantly, we now have a clear
path ahead to better weave DEI efforts into the entire GSA structure, and in so doing, better serve
all of our membership. GSA hopes to lead the geosciences in furthering DEI efforts.
Our path is defined. Next steps include approving goals and metrics at the Council leadership level
for action before GSA 2020 Connects Online in October. Please watch for more to come as
implementation of this critical work gets underway.
Doug Walker, GSA President
Barb Dutrow, GSA President-Elect
Retreat Participants: Sarah Aarons, Nicole Aikin, Hendratta
Ali, Beth Bartel, Tahlia Bear, Dick Berg, Todd
Berggren, David Davis, Barbara Dutrow, Rod Ewing, Rebecca Fazzari, Nicole Gasparini, Tom Haberthier,
Jeanette Hammann, Jose Hurtado, Pat Kilner, Mark Little, Susan Lofton, Chris Maples, Debbie
Marcinkowski, Vicki McConnell, Claudia Mora, Allie Nagurney, Nathan Niemi, Tim Shin, Don Siegel,
Wendy Smythe, Nan Stout, Christa Stratton, Marilyn Suiter, Doug Walker, Wes Ward, Lisa White, Kasey
White, and Sherilyn Williams-Stroud.
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