Published: July 6, 2021

University of Colorado Boulder Chancellor Philip DiStefano named Sonia DeLuca Fernández senior vice chancellor for diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), effective Sept. 1.

“I am delighted to welcome Sonia DeLuca Fernández to this new leadership position in diversity, equity and inclusion,” DiStefano said. “Sonia impressed me with her range of experience in the DEI space—from the publication of scholarly work to extensive experience in change management and building relationships internally and externally to support institutional change. I am excited to have her join my team and welcome her to CU Boulder.”

Sonia DeLuca Fernández

Sonia DeLuca Fernández

DeLuca Fernández currently serves as associate vice provost for educational equity at The Pennsylvania State University. She holds a bachelor’s degree in African American studies and a master’s degree in social foundations of education, both from the University of Iowa. She received her doctorate in higher education from the University of Michigan.

“I look forward to joining Chancellor DiStefano’s leadership team,” DeLuca Fernández said. “I was drawn by the authentic commitment of both the leadership and the community to cultural change and by the campus’s willingness to invest resources, imagination and energy into that change. I am eager to join this effort and help the campus reach its goals.”

As the senior vice chancellor for DEI, DeLuca Fernández will report directly to the chancellor, providing strategic direction for campuswide DEI initiatives and programs as well as strategies for improving the campus culture. As DeLuca Fernández onboards over the coming weeks, campus leaders will work collaboratively with key offices and stakeholders to review how the campus will work together with the senior vice chancellor in support of DEI.

“Sonia will help us coordinate and further align the vital work on DEI already in progress on campus and help us to envision and create new pathways to success for the large volume of work yet to be done,” the chancellor said.

DiStefano thanked the work of the search committee, which brought three “excellent finalists” to CU Boulder for the post.

“In particular, I’m grateful to Kathy Schultz, dean of the School of Education, for her thoughtful and dedicated work as chair of the search committee,” DiStefano said.

The chancellor added that hearing the input of students, faculty and staff during community meetings earlier this year was critical to the search process and to the ongoing and vital DEI work that lies ahead for the campus community.

“Dr. DeLuca Fernández will become not only a key counselor to my leadership team, but a facilitator of our acceleration of critical DEI priorities emanating from the IDEA Plan and other campus actions that will move us forward,” DiStefano said.