NAU announces annual Diversity Award winners

Northern Arizona University announced the President’s Diversity Award winners for academic year 2019-2020. These annual awards recognize the work of people and organizations who support and further diversity and inclusion at the university.

Gabe Montaño, the University’s Diversity Fellow, announced the inaugural University Diversity Fellow Award, which highlights exceptional service focused on improving diversity and inclusion efforts across campus. The first recipient is Priscilla Mills, who is retiring this summer after many years of service at NAU to furthering inclusion and ensuring equity. Two notable accomplishments include transitioning the ADA Committee into the Commission on Disability Access and Design and negotiating a Memorandum of Understanding with Facility Services to allow the commission to have a seat at the table on all design projects. This has had a lasting impact on the accessibility of NAU’s campus that will continue for years to come. Montaño said she also has been integral to the development of the first university-wide Diversity Strategic Plan and has served as a strong advocate and supporter of all the diversity commissions.

Award winners:

Commission on the Status of Women

  • Faculty Award: Karen Renner, associate professor, English
  • Staff Award: Melissa Griffin, director, Health Promotions
  • Project Award: Gender Bias in STEM Fields, Adonna Rometo, lecturer, Biological Sciences
  • Project Award: Gender Bias in STEM Fields, Molly Bechtel, graduate student, Biological Sciences

Commission on Ethnic Diversity

  • Organization Award: Soul Sugar, student group
  • Faculty Award: EPS 599: Indigenous Student Success, Dian Squire, assistant professor, Educational Psychology
  • Staff Award: EPS 599: Indigenous Student Success, Sharon Doctor, director, Indigenous Student Success
  • Faculty Award: Nancy Barron, professor, English

Commission on Disability Access and Design

  • Faculty Award: Shawn Thomas, lecturer, Department of Teaching and Learning
  • Student Award: Selena Nevel, undergraduate student, Construction Management
  • Staff Award: Morgan Mason, program coordinator, Usable Materials Center, Disability Resources
  • Staff Award: Judy Manor, assistant director, Shuttle Services

LGBTQIA Commission

  • Student Award: Deborah Corey, doctoral student, Educational Psychology
  • Staff Award: Carl Dindo, assistant director, Counseling Services
  • Faculty Award: Jessi Quizar, assistant professor, Ethnic Studies
  • Ally of the Year: Shelby Reid, physical therapist, Medical Services

Commission for Native Americans

  • Staff: Simeona Beasley, Office of Indigenous Student Success
  • Student: Kalvina Belin, graduate student, MPH-Health Promotion and Indigenous Health
  • Faculty: Priscilla Sanderson, associate professor and principal investigator, Health Sciences
  • Alumni: Tommy Lewis, Superintendent of Schools, Coconino County


NAU Communications