The Culture Ambassadors program is a staff-focused initiative at Harvard Kennedy School that aims to create sustainable impact and change around diversity, inclusion, and belonging at HKS.
This “train-the-trainers” program is building an inclusive culture by developing the facilitation and leadership capacity of staff to advance anti-racism in their centers, departments, and beyond.
The Culture Ambassadors consist of staff representatives from every center or department who embrace HKS values and try to live them out in their daily work and interactions. In addition, they work with peers in the Culture Ambassadors Program, serve as liaisons in their department, and partner with the Culture Ambassador steering committee to recommend training and resources for the broader HKS community.
Culture Ambassador Project Team
Ian Tosh and Jessenia Alvarez, Academic Dean's Office & SLATE
Brian Klotz and Jessica Munoz-Sainz, Alumni Relations & Resource Development
LaChaun Banks and Danielle Wyerman, Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation
Courtney Hall and Tanya Dall, Bloomberg Center for Cities at Harvard University
Matthew Parent, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs
Alan Lopez, Campus Planning and Operations
Rachel Harris, Carr Center for Human Rights Policy
Victoria Barnum, Center for International Development
Clayton McClesky, Center for Public Leadership
Jacob Beizer, Communications and Public Affairs
Glenn Cunningham, Degree Programs
Ayana Myers and Laura Simolaris, Executive Education
Charlie Porter and Ashley Davis, Faculty Assistant Group
Beverly Teixeria, Human Resources
Peter Thornton, Information Technology
TBD, Institute of Politics
Nicole Dillon and Lauren Faz, Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy
Alessandra Seiter and Daniel Becker, Library and Research Services
Victoria Cardillo-Groves, Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government
Ellen Kassaraba, Office of Financial Services
Ryan Pell, Research Administration
Noelia Negri, Taubman Center for State and Local Government
TBD, Wiener Center for Social Policy
TBD, Women and Public Policy Program
The role of the Culture Ambassadors is to engage the HKS community on education and conversations around diversity, inclusion, and belonging (DIB). The overall goal is to allow for courageous and empowering conversations to take place and progress the Kennedy School toward a culture of greater inclusivity, institutional awareness, and understanding.
The steering committee has created three learning objectives that will better focus this program and its curriculum: community building, facilitation, and DIB skill training.
- Create a network of cultural ambassadors who can engage with diversity, inclusion, and belonging concepts as a group on a long-term basis
- Discuss challenges and successes on advancing DIB with colleagues
- Share resources and initiatives they have used at their centers to advance DIB
- Develop leadership and facilitation capacity of Culture Ambassadors
- Build skills on having difficult conversations on DIB
- Share methods and training as usable tools for culture ambassadors
DIB Skill Building
- Examine and reflect on the impact of oppressive structures within individuals, systems, institutions, and communities
- Identify and understand the actions we can take as individuals, departments, and an institution to advance diversity and equity at HKS
Toolkit & Resources
The Culture Ambassador program has compiled resources to aid anyone at Harvard and beyond engaging in community-building efforts on education and conversations around diversity, inclusion, and belonging (DIB).
This toolkit provides the content, background, and history of systems of inequality, including anti-racism and racial justice, so that Culture Ambassadors and others may effectively facilitate conversations. The toolkit includes readings, activities, facilitation guides, videos, and other relevant resources. It may be used by individuals or teams to assess their own knowledge, attitudes, procedures, and practices.
In addition to the toolkit, the Culture Ambassador program has curated a series of free facilitation guides and other resources to help build cultures focused on diversity, inclusion, and belonging.