September Spotlight: Meet the Office of Diversity and Belonging Team
In alignment with the Pepperdine Caruso Law Office of Diversity and Belonging Strategic Plan, the purpose of the Office of Diversity and Belonging is to ensure that Caruso Law is a place where all belong. Our mission and goals are deeply enriched by our faith-based values and promotes a space where diversity of perspectives and cultures are embraced. The office has sponsored and collaborated on a number of events that foster community at Caruso Law. Signature events have included Open Conversations, the Reimagining Justice Series, and the Belonging Awards.
Under the leadership of Chalak Richards, who serves as the dean of Students, Diversity, and Belonging, the office recognizes that ensuring that the law school, and the law in general, is truly inclusive and a place where all belong, makes for a better practice of law and administration of justice. Dean Richards notes the excitement for this year, commenting,“While we have done great work towards this goal, I’m excited for the growth of our office and how it will be for the forward movement of Caruso Law.”
This is an exciting year as the office has a growing team committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging (DEIB) work. The office's newest member is Dominique Moye, who has stepped into the role of assistant director of Diversity and Belonging. In this role, Moye will support our efforts around DEIB programming, as well as recruiting and assisting students from historically underrepresented backgrounds. Moye has extensive experience within the higher education field serving in various capacities that included student advisement, student affairs programming of campus wide events, and serving as the director of the Black Cultural Center at California State Northridge University. When describing DEIB work in higher education, Moye stated, “DEIB work is important because it addresses and outlines actionable steps to recognizing historic inequities that have had disparate impact on different individuals. DEIB work focuses on ensuring that all people from all demographics and identities can enter the space feeling that their voice, experiences, and presence matters."
Additionally, the office is supported by Kristin Lyming, who serves as the Diversity and Strategic Initiatives event coordinator. Lyming ensures that the vision of the office comes to fruition for our students as we work to build community. When reflecting upon the importance of DEIB work within higher education, Lyming explains, “Increasing diversity helps challenge stereotypes and preconceptions. It truly helps promote personal growth, strengthens communities and workplaces. As the event planner at Pepperdine Caruso School of Law, I feel that supporting diversity events helps encourage our students, faculty and staff to feel included and have a space to both belong and make a difference in our community and in the law. “
We invite you to join our office as we work to ensure Pepperdine Caruso Law is a place where all belong!
More on the Reimagining Justice Series and the Belonging Awards may be found at Diversity Events