Margie Gill named interim executive director for Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiatives

Margie Gill

Margie Gill has been named the interim executive director for Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiatives at Brenau University for the 2021-2022 academic year.

The newly established role reports directly to President Anne Skleder and is based on the recommendations of the university’s Working Group on Diversity, Equity and Inclusive Excellence. While the Working Group completed its mandate in November 2020, it continued to serve in a consultancy capacity.

This position will be a visible, accessible, knowledgeable and trusted advocate for all diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) efforts across the university. This will include being responsible for the development and oversight of DEI initiatives in support of a learning and working environment where all have an opportunity to succeed. The focus will be on building capacity across the university and providing educational opportunities to ensure an even more inclusive and equitable community for all.

“I am excited to serve as the interim executive director for Institutional Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Initiatives and continue the efforts first undertaken by the Working Group over the past year,” Gill said. “I look forward to updating the Brenau community on where we are in these undertakings as the semester gets underway. This journey is never completed, but I am pleased with the direction we are heading.”

Gill is a 2010 graduate of Brenau’s clinical counseling psychology master’s program, board-certified licensed psychotherapist and nationally credentialed clinical supervisor for students and mental health professionals. She has been with the university for the past 12 years and is currently an associate professor in the Lynn J. Darby School of Psychology and Adolescent Counseling and assistant clinic director at the Brenau Center for Counseling and Psychological Services in Gainesville and Norcross.

“I feel strongly that in order to continue the momentum of the strategies and plans of the Working Group, I needed to appoint an interim executive director at this time,” Skleder said. “I am pleased that Dr. Gill, who served as a co-chair of the Working Group and continued to provide counsel and serve whenever asked, accepted this role and look forward to working with her to ensure that we continue to make strides forward in our diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts.”

Through her position, Gill will engage with students, faculty and staff to further diversity, equity and inclusion efforts within institutional operations. She will establish and strengthen relationships among external organizations that support DEI strategies and use effective cultural competence skills to approach, build trust and negotiate across diverse populations. This vision also enhances Brenau’s Quality Enhancement Plan, a commitment made through the university’s accreditation efforts, to ensure students develop real-world career readiness competencies that will strengthen Brenau’s vision for greater participation in its cultural and global education efforts.

Among her many roles at Brenau, Gill serves as faculty advisor for the Black Student Association, Black People at Brenau Association, and the Psi Chi National Honor Society. She earned her Ph.D. in Counseling and Student Personnel Services, along with a certification in diversity, equity and inclusion, from the University of Georgia.

Gill is the executive director of Tabitha’s House Inc., a nonprofit organization that provides direct-care services, mental health counseling and resources to survivors of human trafficking, victims of crime, underserved communities and marginalized populations. She also serves as vice chair for the DeKalb County Juvenile Mental Health Court (Journey program) advisory board and conducts workshops, training and presentations to increase awareness of mental health, human trafficking, diversity, equity and inclusion.

Internationally, Gill assists in developing schools in countries in Latin America and Africa and was recently appointed by the Ministry of Education of Rwanda as a main researcher to explore factors that impact educational achievement for the entire country. She is also active in several professional psychology and counseling organizations and was recently named a member of Leadership Gwinnett, which aims to improve the county through civic and social change.

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