Athletics Director Search

Thursday, November 9, 2017

On November 9th, 2017 WFF submitted the following letter to Dean of Yale College, Marvin Chun, in regards to the search for the University’s next Athletics Director: 

Dear Dean Chun,

I am writing in my role as Chair of the Yale Women Faculty Forum. Our organization works on gender equity and provides researched background and advice for policy decisions affecting the campus. In particular, WFF has long been involved with the implementation of Title IX on campus.

We received your call for comment on the search for a new athletic director. We were pleased to see from the announcement that Gregory Santore is experienced in handling considerations of diversity when assembling candidate pools. Athletics (both at Yale and elsewhere) has long been a flashpoint for questions of equality surrounding race and gender; we consider it vital that a director have an awareness and understanding of both historical and contemporary ways in which race and gender affect participation, outcomes, and experiences in collegiate athletics. We ask that the search process have a diversity and equity plan built in from the start, and that the evaluation process for all candidates will include consideration of how the director will foster an inclusive Yale where everyone is able to perform to their potential. To that end, we would like to know how the head-hunting firm and the search advisory committee will ensure that diversity and equity is at the forefront when considering appropriate candidates for the position, and how they will ensure that the successful candidate has a plan for addressing issues of inclusion, representation, and equity at Yale.

The WFF requests the opportunity to talk more about these issues. We would be happy to schedule a meeting with your office, and/or the search advisory committee, or to provide feedback at any stage of the process. We also request that you let us know the approximate timeline for the search, and when you expect to have the relevant information about candidates’ concrete diversity plans.

We look forward to hearing from you about how these issues are being addressed in this important search.

Best Wishes, 

Claire Bowern

Professor, Director of Graduate Studies

Chair: Yale Women Faculty Forum (

Department of Linguistics


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