University of Richmond administrator to be Albemarle’s next equity director | local government

Albemarle County has found its next director of diversity, equity and inclusion nearly a year after the position became vacant.

The county announced Friday that Jesse Brookins will be the director and will start on August 1. He was most recently deputy director of the Center for Student Engagement at the University of Richmond, according to the announcement.

“Jesse brings a range of diversity, equity and inclusion experiences from across the country that have impressed our team as we look forward to continuing our journey to equip and inspire a welcoming community, inclusive and accessible to all,” County Executive Jeff Richardson said in the press release.

The announcement noted that Brookins has experience developing, implementing and facilitating diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives to advance and support educational and business environments.

In her new role, Brookins will lead the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. This office was created in late 2018 and was previously led by Siri Russell. Russell left County last summer for a position at the University of Virginia.

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The county conducted a nationwide search to find Russell’s replacement.

Brookins is a graduate of Northern Arizona University.

“Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging are integral to our mission to unite all communities for a better future,” Brookins said in the statement. “I look forward to building relationships and advancing the work of promoting inclusivity, interactive education and community involvement in the workplace and in the wider Albemarle County community.”