The Board of Regents is pleased to present a KUDOS award to Karen Kassebaum, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Inclusive Leadership and Learning at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Karen has worked at UNL for 16 years, first serving in the role of Director of Recruitment for the College of Education and Human Sciences, then the Director of Staff Diversity and Inclusion for Human Resources, before assuming her current role this year.
According to her nominator, “Karen has been a driving force behind UNL’s inclusive leadership and learning efforts. For many years, she has been the face of our diversity and inclusion efforts among faculty, staff and students. Her viewpoints are fueled by research and actual experiences.”
Karen has led the “Ouch! That Stereotype Hurts!” training program for faculty to help understand the impact of stereotypes and biased statements. She has also organized numerous events for students, faculty and staff to advance diversity and inclusion efforts in the workplace, including:
- “Check Your Blind Spots”, which brought to campus a multimedia trailer with information about unconscious biases people hold;
- “Day of Understanding,” which addresses how to have civil and useful conversations on topics related to diversity and inclusion; and
- “Check In. Speak Up. Show Up.,” a series of events for staff to share ideas on how the university can foster an inclusive workplace, which includes a personal pledge to “check my bias, speak up for others, and show up for all.”
In addition to her UNL work, Karen founded Athlete2Athlete, which provides transitional mentoring and leadership development for student athletes. She is a recipient of the Chancellor’s Fulfilling the Dream Award given to those who exemplify the values of Martin Luther King, Jr., and is a proud alum of UNL, where she earned her Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Higher Education.
Please join me in thanking Karen for her dedication to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.