Paulette Granberry-Russell is an internationally known and respected higher education leader in the field of diversity and inclusion. She is a highly sought after speaker and consultant on issues of equal opportunity, affirmative action, best practices in recruiting, strategies for retaining a diverse faculty, disrupting bias in organizations, development of eLearning system related to institutional values based in diversity and inclusion, and building capacity to engage with diverse communities.
She also currently serves her alma mater, Michigan State University as Senior Advisor to the President for Diversity and as the Director of the Office for Inclusion and Intercultural Initiatives. In this role, Granberry Russell works closely with academic deans and other campus leaders, as well as faculty, staff, students, and external stakeholders, and provides strong, visible leadership to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion as core institutional values, central to the MSU’s missions of teaching, research, service, and community. In this role, she has led the development of required workshops and eLearning programs on diversity and inclusion, Title IX and campus sexual assault issues, and learning assessment tools related to these areas. Her office has also led efforts to train campus and regional law enforcement personnel on implicit bias and microagressions. Her roles at MSU have also included 17 years of coordinating Title IX and Americans with Disabilities Act compliance.
Granberry-Russell is a true thought leader in the areas of diversity and inclusion. As a charter member of the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education, and Chair of the Association’s annual conference planning committee for the past five years, she has been instrumental in creating professional development opportunities for diversity and inclusion leaders nationwide, in sharing her knowledge through participation in many external review teams at peer institutions, and in identifying innovative, evidence-based strategies to advance diversity and inclusion across the spectrum of higher education, in the United States and beyond.
A CIC-Academic Leadership Fellow (2000-2001), Granberry-Russell has engaged in countless national and international initiatives designed to advance diversity and inclusion efforts in higher education and in society at-large.
Highlights of her activities include:
- Durban Institute of Technology in South Africa invited her to present workshops on diversity programming and change management to executive team, middle managers, equity and human resources office staff related to the successful merger of the Natal Technikon and the ML Sultan Technikon, the first two higher education institutions (technikons) to merge after the dismantling of the South Africa apartheid.
- Traveled to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and Dakar, Senegal with MSU’s Center for Advanced Study of International Development (CASID) as part of the Leadership Fellows Program: Building Capacity for Civil Society and Economic Development,
- Professional Fellows Program, Strengthening Leadership Capacity and Professional Skills: A Women’s Economic Empowerment Program – A Tanzania, South African and U.S. Partnership. MSU, US Delegation trip to South African and Tanzania. Program supported by a grant from the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of Citizen Exchanges
- Center for Advanced Study of International Development – Leadership Fellows Program: Building Capacity for Civil Society and Economic Development – US Delegation trip to Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso and Dakar, Senegal.
- Served as a panelist on affirmative action and diversity initiatives in U.S. higher education in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Granberry-Russell was an integral part of the National Science Foundation ADVANCE—Advancing Diversity through the Alignment of Policies and Practices—Program at MSU, which aims to increase the participation of women in the scientific and engineering workforce through their increased representation and advancement in academic scientific and engineering careers.
She also led MSU’s highly successful Project 60/50, a year-long project of activities and events designed to educate and engage the campus and greater community in conversations on civil and human rights. Project 60/50 has raised over $40,000 from community partners and leaders, and engaged an estimated 10,000 campus and broader community partners in over 200 programs and initiatives on a wide range of local and global civil and human rights issues.
A native of Mount Clemens, Michigan, Granberry-Russell is a graduate of Michigan State University, and earned a Juris Doctor degree from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School. A licensed attorney in the state of Michigan, Granberry Russell also consults on labor and employment law matters. She has been an active community volunteer, and has served on numerous community based non-profit boards, including currently, the American Red Cross. She is committed to creating inclusive living, learning, and working environments.