Nov 19, 2020

November Update on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the Tuck School

By Dia Draper
Associate Dean for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion


The intent of this monthly update is to share the latest thinking about DEI at Tuck, actions we are taking to create change, and the many ways that Tuck community members can engage with topics of diversity and inclusion.  Here we will share developments to key initiatives and programs, new curricular and co-curricular offerings, student-led creations and events, and news from faculty, staff and alumni.

DEI is a strategic priority for our school, as evidenced by the creation of the new leadership role, assistant dean for DEI—a position that I am honored to hold and be the first appointment to. I am more excited, inspired, and driven than ever to help Tuck the institution and Tuck the community realize its potential to lead change in the world by starting in our own house. 

Wise leaders build diverse teams and create inclusive environments. They lead high-performing organizations by cultivating a culture that is safe for honest dialogue, respectful debate, and transformative discussion. That work begins here, with us. 

Below are a few things that we’ve been working on and resources I’ve found helpful or thought-provoking recently.  

Wishing you well, 


Dia Draper (she/her)
Assistant Dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Many Voices. One Tuck. 

Inspiring Moment of the Month

There is a lot to draw inspiration from in our community. Each month, I’ll share one example of DEI momentum that I find energizing. This month’s example is thanks to our dean, Matt Slaughter. I snuck into the back of Dean Slaughter’s Leadership in the Global Economy (LGE) class on November 5 to observe his session with William “Sandy” Darity. Darity is a distinguished Professor of Public Policy at Duke University and is widely regarded as one of the leading experts on the economic causes and consequences of racism in America. The topic for class that day: reparations for Black Americans. Professor Darity shared his wisdom after Matt and the LGE students lit up the class discussing the case for reparations in a smart, illuminating, tension-filled debate. Watching this class, knowing the courage it took for Matt and the students to broach a sensitive topic made me proud and more convinced than ever that we need this kind of dialogue in business schools.

Recommended Reading

“The business case for diversity in the workplace is now overwhelming,” from the World Economic Forum is a data-packed but super interesting read about the business case for diversity.

Taking a Stand

In October’s joint leadership statement, we articulated Tuck’s commitment to DEI and our aspiration to be an anti-racist institution. We committed to sharing our strategic plan, transparency via an annual DEI report, and monthly updates to share our progress and encourage your ideas and engagement.

Introducing Professor Stacy Blake-Beard

The incredibly smart and talented Stacy Blake-Beard joins Tuck as a Visiting Professor of Business Administration. Professor Blake-Beard will teach Managing Organizations in the spring 2021 term. Her research and expertise bisect the areas of gender, diversity and mentorship. In particular, her work focuses on the challenges and opportunities offered by mentoring relationships, with a focus on how these relationships may be changing as a result of increasing workforce diversity.

Student DEI Leadership

The Student Board DEI Co-Chair team is complete! Lia Parker-Belfer T’22 joins Roderick Milligan T’21 as student leaders focused on advancing DEI initiatives around the student experience. Rod and Lia are bringing opportunities for dialogue and connection to the community such as a live chat event with Dartmouth Professor Shamell Bell and the creative team behind the film, The Hate U Give, a small group dinner co-sponsored with WIB and a facilitated discussion on allyship, and the forthcoming launch of “If You Knew Me,” a grassroots podcast dedicated to deepening student connections and fostering a culture of belonging.

Lia and Roderick

History, Heritage, and Honor

As the fall term kicked off in September, we recognized Hispanic and Latinx Heritage Month, and in October LGBTQ History Month, National Coming Out Day, Disability Awareness Month, and Indigenous People’s Day. This November, we honor and celebrate Native American Heritage Month, Veterans Day, Diwali, and “Movember,” the global movement to support men’s health.

In Case You Missed It: Recent Programs and Events

  • TADA Virtual Kickoff and Refresh 2020
    The (re)introduction of the Tuck Association of Diverse Alumni (TADA) as the group celebrates its 10th anniversary.
  • Lessons in Leadership: A Conversation with Valerie Jarrett
    Tuck’s Center for Business, Government & Society hosted Valerie Jarrett, the longest-serving senior advisor during the presidency of Barack Obama, to talk about leadership and change. Liz Calby T’21 shared what she learned from Jarrett on the Tuck360 blog.
  • Alumni Engagement and the Center for Business, Government & Society partnered with current students to host a civic engagement series, including the student-led session, “The Pursuit of Equitable Justice in Your Community.” Leah Jack T’21 kicked off the conversation and practitioners representing various aspects of the justice system shared the latest updates on their efforts and how everyday citizens can help create a more equitable justice system.
  • TADA hosted a program, “Diverse Career Stories,” for Tuck alumni to share lessons learned about navigating career transitions, climbing the corporate ladder, and becoming founders and entrepreneurs. Kacy Gambles T’10, Andrew Olaleye T'13, and Erika Santos T’12 kindly shared reflections on their career journeys.
  • 50 Years of Women at Tuck
    Half a century after Dean John Hennessey’s groundbreaking decision to admit women to Tuck, Tuck alumnae are leaders across all walks of life. This inspirational conversation moderated by Lauren Hirsch T’12 featured alumnae Pamela Scott T’75, the first Black woman to attend Tuck and a former financial services executive, and Sarah Blatt T’21, current Tuck student and military intelligence officer for the US Army Reserves.
  • Tuck’s annual Women in Business (WIB) Conference and annual Diversity Conference (DivCo) didn’t miss a beat despite the need to go virtual for this year’s events. The student co-chairs, staff, and faculty along with a dedicated group of alumni made sure that prospective students still got a taste of the Tuck magic. Thanks to Elisabeth Hartley T’05, angel investor and advisor; Cassie Young T’11, partner at Primary Venture Partners; Mariana Garavaglia T’08, chief people officer at Peloton, and the ever popular Ramsey Jay, Jr. T'05 of Ares Management for their inspiring keynote speeches.

Inclusion in Action: Bringing Black Hair Care to Hanover 

One of the questions we hear most often from Black and Pan African prospective students is if there are resources for Black hair care in Hanover.  In an effort to create a more inclusive and welcoming community that fosters belonging, we are excited to share that Tuck is partnering with Dartmouth’s Office of Pluralism and Leadership to join the effort to bring Black hair care to Hanover. By supporting a local barber as well as bringing a stylist to town monthly, Tuck and Dartmouth are thinking creatively to solve issues important to students, partners, faculty, staff, and their families who want professionals with experience cutting and styling Black, natural, and curly hair.

A Final Thought

I recently read a great article in The Atlantic about the history, use, and impact of the phrase “Hey, guys.” Related, a Slate article confirmed that one of the most hotly contested contractions in the English language may be the best gender inclusive greeting of all: “Hey, y’all.”

For more on this topic, check out this video which nicely summarizes alternative greetings that are more inclusive.