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The Ethics Hot Seat Speaker Series is dedicated to bringing outstanding speakers to campus to engage our students, faculty, alumni and the business community in thought-provoking dialogue about ethical issues.

2022 Ethics Speaker Series Featuring Chief Diversity Officer Thomas Witherspoon

From equality to equity, from inclusion to belonging; the evolution of the relationship between diversity, equity, and inclusion and education from May 17, 1954, forward.

Thomas Witherspoon was selected as University of Tampa’s (UT) inaugural chief diversity officer in August 2021. He brings with him a professional portfolio with over 15 years of experience in higher education. Witherspoon’s work history is steeped in the strategic practice of collaborating across a variety of offices, including Multicultural Student Affairs, Orientation, Title IX, International Services, Religious Life, Wellness, Greek Life and Bias Response. He’s supported students, faculty and staff in building diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging both on campus and in the greater community.

Before joining the UT team, he was the vice president for diversity and inclusion at Whitman College. There, Witherspoon worked with the Office of the Provost, Dean of Students and other senior leaders to promote an inclusive learning community. He was instrumental in establishing the intercultural fellowship, a pilot program—that addresses specific facets of inclusion and belonging in the Whitman community.

Early in his career, Witherspoon was the program director for The Posse Foundation, an organization that recruits and trains diverse groups of high school student leaders and partners with institutions of higher education to help underrepresented students navigate and excel in college.

Witherspoon prides himself on being a first-generation college graduate and holds a Doctor of Education from New England College, a Master of Art from Northeastern Illinois University and a Bachelor of Arts from Denison University. He has received prestigious fellowships from The College Board and Pahara NextGen. Outside of higher education, Witherspoon is a self-proclaimed photographer, avid reader and collector of cultural artifacts.

Please join Witherspoon and the Center for Ethics for an intellectual discussion on diversity and inclusion both in the classroom and the workplace! Refreshments are provided.

Date: Monday, April 11, 2022
Time: 6-7:15 p.m.
Location: Vaughn Center Crescent Club

Register Now!