SUNY Chancellor King Announces Director-in-Residence of the SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute

2023 HLI Fellow Doris Díaz-Kelly Will Help Build on SUNY's Successful Professional Development and Networking Program for Hispanic/Latinx Leaders and Allies

Albany, NY – October 17, 2023 - State University of New York Chancellor John B. King, Jr. today announced that 2023 SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute (HLI) Fellow Doris Díaz-Kelly has been named the second director-in-residence of the institute. Díaz-Kelly was chosen from a pool of 60 previous HLI fellows. As the second HLI director-in-residence, Díaz-Kelly will help build on SUNY's successful professional development and networking program for Hispanic/Latinx leaders and allies.

Chancellor King approved the appointment following the recommendation from SUNY Senior Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer Ricardo Nazario y Colón and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Presidential Searches and Hispanic Leadership Institute Executive Director Zulaika Rodriguez-Awoliyi.

"As the largest comprehensive system of public higher education in the country, we are proud of our diversity, and while more than 15% of students identify as Hispanic, we recognize there is more to be done to increase inclusivity and representation. As part of that work, we must empower campus leaders who share experiences and cultures with our diverse student population. Programs like HLI celebrate Latinx communities and propel Hispanic/Latinx individuals and allies to further success," said SUNY Chancellor King. "My congratulations to Doris Díaz-Kelly for her appointment, and for the 2024 class who will benefit from her mentorship. Doris and our HLI Fellows are role models for the young Hispanic adults that come to our campuses, and we are pleased to have Doris's support to build this critical program further."

The HLI director-in-residence plays a key leadership role in assisting the HLI executive director in the development and implementation of the institute. Díaz-Kelly will also provide guidance and feedback to current HLI fellows on their projects and exercises; meet regularly with fellows; communicate with current HLI fellows and alumni on emerging leadership topics and news; and lead training sessions, including a one-day training seminar for prospective applicants. In addition, Díaz-Kelly will serve as a mentor to the fellows and as a member of the HLI Steering Committee.

The HLI is charged with developing and supporting the next generation of Hispanic/Latinx leaders and allies across the SUNY system. The institute has graduated 60 SUNY fellows, including Díaz-Kelly, since its launch in 2017. The institute strives to strengthen leadership, team building, communication, and problem-solving skills for current and aspiring leaders.

Dutchess Community College President Peter Grant Jordan said, "As the president of Dutchess Community College, I am pleased to support Doris Díaz-Kelly in this new role as she continues to grow as a Latina leader in higher education. Doris's passion for and commitment to the role of mentorship in leadership development will serve the institute well. We look forward to the contributions she will make as HLI director-in-residence."

HLI Director-in-Residence Doris Díaz-Kelly said, "SUNY has truly proven its commitment to diversity and to growing its leaders from within. Representation matters, not only in the student experience but also in the SUNY experience—whether as a student or an employee. I have experienced SUNY at various levels over a span of more than 30 years, from my undergraduate work as an EOP student at Binghamton University to my graduate work followed by my employment within SUNY for over 25 years; I am truly a product of SUNY. I am exhilarated and inspired to begin in this new role as HLI director-in-residence. Not only do I get to continue my work of impacting the lives of our students, but I also get to serve as a resource for the leadership that is currently being cultivated at SUNY."

About Doris Díaz-Kelly
Doris Díaz-Kelly is a leader in higher education dedicated to elevating and improving the student experience. She currently serves as assistant dean of students and director of Dutchess Community College's Educational Opportunity Program (EOP). She leads the college's Center for College Access and Educational Opportunities, which includes EOP and TRiO: Student Support Services program.

Her personal experience as a Hispanic woman from the Bronx and first-generation college student has positioned her to be informed and specifically aware of the challenges and unique circumstances impacting first-generation students and their families. Attending Binghamton University as an EOP student and her work with underrepresented populations throughout her 25-year career in higher education has provided her great sensitivity to the issues and concerns that many families encounter during the transition to college. Her work on behalf of the student experience has allowed her to affect policies and procedures that promote and support student achievement for the most vulnerable populations.

Advocating for student success at DCC, whether by providing mentorship, supplying wraparound services, or implementing campus procedures that lessen barriers, has been a cornerstone of Díaz-Kelly's work that reflects her commitment to creating a college experience all can be proud of.

Díaz-Kelly has served not only the students at Dutchess Community College but also her community. Currently, she is in her second term as a commissioner for the Dutchess County Commission on Human Rights. Her work on and off campus centers on the belief that there is no greater way to live your life than in service to your community.

Díaz-Kelly has a master's degree in social sciences and a Bachelor of Arts in sociology and Spanish literature from Binghamton University.

The SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute serves as a resource for Hispanic/Latinx leaders and their allies in higher education, both in New York State and across the country. Its mission is to foster and support the professional development and retention of current and emerging leaders to create a more diverse university system. HLI fellows have the unique opportunity to meet with distinguished Hispanic/Latinx leaders and their allies from SUNY and the community at large, both locally and nationally; work with mentors; expand their network; and build connections. HLI creates a pipeline for professional opportunities across SUNY and ensures alumni are networking and receiving ongoing support and mentorship well after they graduate from the program. The program has graduated 60 fellows since its inception in 2017.

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year, is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2022, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit