Race at Regis Update

Thanks to the hard work and input of many alumni, students, faculty and staff, parents, and trustees who have participated in the Race at Regis initiative, Regis High School is taking action on three important initial steps to help strengthen our community and ensure all Regis students and adults feel welcome and supported at 84th Street. The school will launch searches for two new positions — a Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and a new recruiter in the Admissions Office — to our administration and staff. In addition, the Board of Trustees has approved the creation of a new board committee that will focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion and work closely with school leaders to ensure Regis fully embodies our mission statement and our Jesuit values.

These enhancements represent the first implementations of recommendations submitted to the school administration last month by the Race at Regis steering committee. After hearing last year from many Regis graduates and current students with unacceptable stories and memories of experiencing racism at Regis, the administration launched a comprehensive effort to identify ways in which the school could foster a more caring environment and ensure that current and future Black Regians and other students of color do not suffer the same experiences.

The job description for the new Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion was posted this week as Regis begins to search for exceptional candidates for this important role. The director, who will report to the President and sit on the Leadership Team, will be responsible for the promotion of diversity, equity, and inclusion for students, faculty, and staff while guiding efforts and creating opportunities to define, assess, and educate the Regis community in these areas.

The Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion also will work closely with the newly formed Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion committee on the Board of Trustees. That committee, which will be chaired by Roger Knight ’00, will offer strategic guidance and oversight to ensure that Regis educates and forms its Men for Others in an environment consistent with our founding principles and Ignatian tradition.

The Admissions Office, led by Director of Admissions Mr. Eric DiMichele, will soon expand with the addition of a new full-time employee who will focus on recruitment. This person will work closely with the existing Admissions staff to ensure that Regis continues to attract, admit, and enroll a diverse and academically exceptional class of Catholic young men each year. The search for the right candidate for this new role, the need for which was originally identified when the school produced its first Strategic Plan in 2018, will begin in the coming weeks.

Regis’ faculty and staff Diversity Committee, with the support and guidance of the Leadership Team, will consider how best to implement additional recommendations made by the steering committee during the coming months as the school awaits the arrival of the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. Heritage Alumni, a group of roughly 150 Black and Latino graduates from across six different decades, have played a vital role during this process in service to their alma mater and will continue to be consulted.

“At Regis, we are proud of our exceptional, diverse student body and our dedicated, talented faculty and staff,” said Director of Mission and Identity Fr. A.J. Rizzo, SJ, who chaired the Race at Regis Steering Committee. “These initial improvements and those that follow will help ensure that all of us on 84th Street feel at home, respected, and supported in the caring community called for in our mission statement. We are grateful to all of the alumni, students, faculty, staff, parents, and friends who have thoughtfully worked hard throughout this process on behalf of our beloved Regis.”

Posted: 3/19/21