Christopher Edley, dean of the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law and a widely respected authority on civil rights issues, agreed to act as special advisor to President Mark G. Yudof and UC San Diego Chancellor Marye Anne Fox. He will assist the university in implementing the campus climate action plan outlined in the UC San Diego student and administration agreement signed Thursday (March 4).
The adopted recommendations aim to move UC San Diego past hurtful incidents and improve the campus climate by enhancing diversity in the curriculum and throughout the UC San Diego community. In the past weeks, the UC San Diego community has been stunned by a series of racial incidents that prompted African-American students to develop a list of recommendations to increase minority representation and to improve campus climate.
In his role as special advisor, Edley will assess and monitor the situation at UC San Diego and advise both the president and the chancellor as they evaluate current conditions and seek to address underlying causes.
In jointly announcing the assignment of Edley, Yudof and Fox expressed optimism that by working together, the students, faculty and administration at UC San Diego can move forward from the troubling incidents of the past three weeks.
“These serious racial incidents raise difficult questions,” Yudof said, “and we are confident that we will identify the most effective and substantive solutions. Dean Edley will go to work at once helping UC San Diego through this passage. The bottom line is this: We will not tolerate racism in any form, and we will not hesitate to act to eradicate it whenever and wherever it arises.”
Added Chancellor Fox: “UC San Diego will not tolerate racist actions. We’re committed to work together with our students on transformational change. Our agreement reflects the fundamental commitment to work together for the benefit of our entire campus.”
In addition to the campus climate agreement reached Thursday, the UC San Diego leadership and police have sought the advice and assistance of the FBI and the San Diego City Attorney for possible criminal charges regarding to the racist actions.
“There is still much work to be done,” Yudof said, “and Chancellor Fox and I are pleased that Dean Edley has agreed to help us. With his extraordinary civil rights background and his legal experience, he will provide us with invaluable guidance.”
Yudof said Edley would arrive on campus next week and begin to engage with students, faculty and administrators.
Edley has served in two White House administrations. In the Carter administration, he was assistant director of domestic policy. Among duties in the Clinton administration, he acted as special counsel to the president for the White House review of affirmative action. From 1999 to 2005, he was a congressional appointee on the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. In addition to serving as dean at Boalt Hall, Edley is founder and director of the Chief Justice Earl Warren Institute on Race, Ethnicity and Diversity, a multidisciplinary think tank.
Also posted on the UC Office of the President web site, at http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/article/22956
Jeffrey Gattas, UC San Diego, (858) 822-6194
Peter King, UC Office of the President, (510) 987-0279