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Deanna Carrithers will join Tompkins County Administration as Chief Equity and Diversity Officer. Carrithers, who begins her new role at the County in early September, served most recently as the director of operations at Wichita State University in Kansas. As Tompkins County's first appointed Chief Equity and Diversity Officer, Carrithers will lead the County's strategy to be a diverse, anti-racist, equitable, and inclusive organization with the support of its senior leadership and interdepartmental justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion teams.
"Deanna is a proven leader in diversity and equity and will bring an exemplary track record of management and community engagement experience to our team. Over the past 13 years, she has served with distinction in leadership roles in local government, the nonprofit sector, and the higher education community. Her enthusiasm was palpable throughout the interview process, and we're excited for her to be a part of our community and our work at the County," stated Tompkins County Administrator Jason Molino.
The Chief Equity and Diversity Officer position was created through a recommendation brought forth during the organization's workplace climate survey process. Deputy County Administrator Amie Hendrix stated, "The vision for the Chief Equity and Diversity Officer truly came from our employees. After spending months looking at our strengths, challenges, and opportunities, as well as researching ways to further develop our organization, our employees recommended to the Legislature the creation of this position. To welcome the energy and enthusiasm of Deanna at the helm of our justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion work is truly an exciting time for Tompkins County."
Leslyn McBean-Clairborne, Chairwoman of the Tompkins County Legislature stated, "At a time in our Country's history when attention to diversity, equity and inclusion is paramount, seeing this position come to fruition is an incredible milestone for Tompkins County. The entire Legislature and I are ecstatic that we will have a member of the County's leadership team focused on equity for the organization as an employer and a service provider. Deanna will have our support in this work, and we are looking forward to the impacts that she will make for our community."
In anticipation of her work with Tompkins County, Carrithers stated, "Advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion has never been more important to building vibrant and sustainable communities. I am honored to join a community of public servants who believe in equity, diversity, and inclusion as uncompromised values. I look forward to strengthening partnerships with nonprofit organizations, businesses, and educational institutions to promote equal opportunity as we create social and economic opportunities for all citizens."