HeForShe at SBU:  Addressing Gender Equality Issues Using Innovative Approaches

Lee Bitsoi 

Chief Diversity Officer

Stony Brook University

HeForShe at SBU:  Addressing Gender Equality Issues Using Innovative Approaches:  

 Created by UN Women in 2014, the United Nations entity for gender equality and the empowerment of women, HeForShe is a global effort to engage men and boys in removing the social and cultural barriers that prevent women and girls from achieving their potential, and thus together positively reshaping society. The achievement of gender equality requires an inclusive approach that recognizes the crucial role of men and boys as partners for women’s rights, and as having needs of their own in the formulation of that balance. HeForShe invites men and boys to build on the work of the women’s movement as equal partners in the crafting and implementation of a shared vision of gender equality that will benefit all of humanity. Stony Brook was one of the very first universities to host a HeForShe event and start a HeForShe campus organization. Leveraging this existing support for HeForShe, and working with faculty, students and staff across the campus, beginning in Fall 2015, Stony Brook’s commitment to gender equality will be designed into every stage of the campus life experience. Stony Brook will build gender sensitization programming and gender equality themes into its mandatory freshman seminar class, reaching 100 percent of students by the 2019 academic year.

LeManuel Lee Bitsóí (Diné), EdD, is a critical ethnographer and bioethicist who currently serves as Chief Diversity Officer for Stony Brook University, where he leads efforts to institutionalize diversity, equity and inclusion for all campuses of the University.  Prior to Stony Brook, Dr. Bitsóí served in administrative and faculty positions at Harvard, Dartmouth, Georgetown and most recently, Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.  In addition, Dr. Bitsóí serves on several national boards and associations, including the National Advisory Council (NAC) for the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity (NCORE), the National Research Advisory Council (NRAC) for the Department of Veterans Affairs, and Chairs the Native American Affairs Committee for the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS).