Former president Taylor Reveley appointed the Task Force on Race and Race Relations in March 2015. The 21-member task force is comprised of faculty, administrators, staff, students and a member of the Board of Visitors. The Task Force met once a month since March 2015, focusing primarily on four principal activities: 1) meeting to discuss current programs and practices at William & Mary, 2) hosting six on-campus open forums to discuss perceptions of William & Mary's racial climate, 3) reading and discussing the various communications from the community that were received via the Task Force's website, and 4) examining closely events related to race and race relations across the country, events taking place not only on university campuses but also in the world beyond academic institutions.
We took these responsibilities seriously. As teachers, administrators, staff, students and alumni, and as members of the larger community, the Task Force understood the importance of listening carefully to internal and external constituents of our community.
We have sought out, and heard from, faculty, staff, alumni, administrators, students and community members. We have analyzed, debated and discussed our findings. We have reached out beyond the W&M walls, looking across the country to see what other universities are doing and have done. We have also critically reflected upon the actions of institutions whose failures have made national headlines. We have found ourselves, at times, saddened by what we have learned but we have also found ourselves inspired to purposefully commit to the task at hand.
Some of our recommendations are easily achievable; many, however, are not. Nevertheless, we believe that this current historic moment- one in which issues of race and inclusion appear almost daily on the front page of newspapers everywhere represents an enormous opportunity. The Task Force report includes recommendations that urge William & Mary to seize the moment, to be proactive rather than reactive, and to become a national leader on issues of race and race relations, here our campus and beyond.
Success in achieving any of these goals depends both on realigning current resources and on identifying new resources through private support. With this in mind, the Task Force has set forth its highest priority recommendations (in no particular order) with the hope that the university will undertake those recommendations immediately under the auspices of an appointed Implementation Team.
President's Task Force on Race and Race Relations
March 28, 2016