University Diversity Officer Biography

Dr. Dianne Rush Woods, Ph.D.

Dr. Dianne Rush WoodsDr. Rush Woods has the distinction of being appointed as the first Diversity Officer for California State University, East Bay, as of July 1, 2013. In her role as Diversity Officer, Dr. Woods coordinates efforts to foster and support diversity, equity and inclusion as core values throughout all aspects of the University community. Her work emphasizes diversity-oriented programs and initiatives including implementation of the University Diversity Plan to ensure that actions are taken to fulfill its commitments. She previously served as the Chief of Staff to Dr. Leroy Morishita, President of Cal State East Bay. Joining the faculty initially as a lecturer in the Department of Sociology, Dr. Woods was appointed as a tenure track faculty member in 2001. A founding member of the Department of Social Work, Dr. Woods served as its chair from 2007-2010. As a professor and active scholar in Social Work, Dr. Woods is recognized regionally and nationally for her work in the areas of race, gender and equity issues in the academy; photo-voice, community empowerment; and the overlap between domestic violence and animal abuse. In addition, Dr. Woods has served as the principal or co-principal investigator on a series of Title IV Education Department grants and California Social Work Educational Consortium II Mental Health Department grants.

Dr. Woods has participated extensively in faculty governance during her tenure, most notably serving as the Senate’s Vice Chair in 2009, and Senate Chair from 2010-2012. She also served as the University's representative to the Statewide Academic Senate Fall 2010-Spring 2012.

Dr. Woods, a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, received her B.A. in Sociology from the University of California, Berkeley; M.S.W. from the University of California, Los Angeles; M.P.H. from the University of California, Berkeley; and Ph.D. in Social Work from the University of California, Berkeley.

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