Office of Diversity and Inclusion



Greetings LSU Health Community,

In 2009 the United Nations recognized February 20th as the World’s Day for Social Justice.  At its core, social justice is about fairness in ensuring that all members of society have equitable opportunities and access to resources that contribute to their social and economic mobility and security. 

The theme for the 2022 Social Justice Day is “Achieving Social Justice through Formal Employment”.  The Permanent Mission of the Kyrgyz Republic to the UN, the United Nations Development Programme, and the International Labour Organization (ILO) are hosting a virtual event to commemorate the 2022 World Day of Social Justice on the theme today 12:15-1:30pm CDT.  To register for the event and learn more about the World’s for Social Justice Day please visit here.

Additionally, today at noon LSUHSC’s School of Public Health will host “A History Inequity: The History of the Claiborne Expressway”, a lecture on the environmental injustice impacts highway development had on traditionally black neighborhoods here in New Orleans.   Registration for the event can be found here.

While these events occur concurrently, I hope that you have the time to attend one or both as they are both advance dialogue and knowledge about historically underrepresented communities.

Erica Severan-Webb

Director of Diversity Programs and Initiatives

Dear LSU Health Community,

Black History Month begins today. Historian and scholar Carter G. Woodson, through his work with the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), observed the second week of February as Negro History Week. This practice was transformed by students at Kent State University who recognized the entire month of February as an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of Black Americans in U.S. History. In 1976, President Gerald Ford officially recognized February as Black History Month.  

Since the first iteration of its national recognition and celebration, U.S. Presidents have endorsed a theme for Black History Month. The theme selected for 2022, “Black Health and Wellness,” honors the contributions of Black scholars and medical practitioners specifically and those in the health sciences community who work tirelessly to advance what is known about health and wellness in the Black Community--a community that has historically been underserved and understudied.

LSU Health New Orleans remains committed to advancing knowledge on health in the most underserved communities and training and developing future health science practitioners in meeting the immediate needs of an increasingly diverse U.S. society. For Black History Month of 2022, we acknowledge the countless contributions of scholars, practitioners, colleagues, and students who persist in attaining health and healthcare equity that brings LSU Health closer to its institutional goals and amplifies our institutional efforts to create a healthier society. A mission that we live and breathe every day.

We invite all members of the LSU campus community to celebrate Black History Month because of its seminal importance in fostering increased understanding about what is known about Black life, health, and wellness. An understanding that also increases our ability to serve one another.

In Community,

Office of Diversity and Inclusion

LSU Health New Orleans students, faculty and staff can now modify their preferred name on their student ID or faculty and staff badge.

The new rollout is part of a multi-tiered, comprehensive strategy to promote a more inclusive campus environment. The decision to include preferred names on ID badges builds on our institutional commitment to ensure that everyone feels fully welcomed and affirmed. When a member of our community is able to choose the way in which they wish to be addressed, it can have a transformative impact.

The inclusion of preferred names on ID cards comes after a series of meetings with university officials, including the interim vice chancellor for academic affairs, the registrar, and representatives from the Office of Human Resources, University Compliance, and the Office of Institutional Technology. While the committee is excited to announce this new policy shift, there is a recognition that the work towards a more-equitable campus remains iterative. This new decision represents a small but significant step towards a more inclusive campus. This work will continue with a second phase that will allow members of our community the option to identify their pronouns in various systems across campus. This is an institution-wide shift, so there are a host of institutional considerations that we are working through.

Students who have questions concerning this policy are encouraged to contact the university registrar ( Faculty and staff are encouraged to contact the Office of Human Resources ( Beginning in the spring, faculty will have the opportunity to learn more about chosen name, pronouns, and gender identity at sessions hosted by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion (ODI).

Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion

Dear LSU Health New Orleans Students,

Welcome to the start of a new academic year—one that promises to be filled with boundless possibilities and new insights. As we embark on the beginning of a semester in a historic moment that has already presented unique and unmatched challenges, we share a sense of hope and optimism for what lies ahead.

Our institution represents a diverse community brought together by a shared commitment to excellence, innovation, collaboration, and mutual respect.  We pride ourselves on creating an inclusive and supportive environment for all members of our academic community. We are an institution replete with strong academic programs and a commitment to rigorous training in the health sciences.

While the time you spend at LSU Health pursuing your academic endeavors will play an important part in your career trajectory, the energy you invest in building friendships, engaging with campus organizations, and forging relationships with your peers, professors and leaders across campus will influence your life’s trajectory.

As you engage with individuals across dimensions of identity, expect to be exposed to new ideas and ways of thinking. Feel empowered to engage these new ideas by sharing your own ideas and thoughts with others as well. Recognize that we often “learn the most from those with whom we have the least in common.” Embrace diversity as a critical aspect of your opportunities for learning at LSU Health New Orleans. Also, recognize that in the midst of our rich diversity lies an intangible connectedness through our shared humanity.

LSU Health New Orleans is proud of its public land grant mission which grounds us as an institution serving the needs of this state while also challenges us to make a global impact.  Please know that you, our students, are our greatest asset. Our hope is that, as you begin this semester, you will intentionally participate in opportunities that fully prepare you to successfully navigate our increasingly diverse society.

Welcome to LSU Health New Orleans and best wishes for an outstanding and impactful academic year.


Larry H. Hollier, MD

Timothy J. Fair, PhD
Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion

Dear LSUHSC Community,

This month, we recognize two annual celebrations—Juneteenth and LGBTQ+ Pride Month. The history and significance of these commemorations compel us to examine our individual and collective contributions to matters of organizational equity and inclusion.

Juneteenth, also commonly referred to as Freedom Day, marks the moment, 156 years ago, when enslaved African Americans in Texas were informed of the emancipation proclamation—which had been issued by President Lincoln two years earlier. This date holds great significance as it has become the oldest annual celebration of emancipation in the United States.  I join our Black students, residents, faculty, and staff in commemorating this important date and challenge each of us to reflect on the ongoing history of racial inequity and to examine and eliminate any vestiges of racism that persist.

Pride Month finds its origins in the 1969 stonewall uprising, where thousands of people flooded the street to protest against hostility, abuse, and discrimination in employment and housing for sexual minorities—forging a path for LGBTQ+ recognition. As our nation continues to dismantle barriers to inclusion, these changes, while often incremental, provide hope for a more equitable future. As an institution devoted to improving the lives of all, we embrace and affirm all aspects of human difference including sexual orientation, gender identity, and gender expression and acknowledge our LGBTQ+ students, residents, faculty, and staff who contribute to the rich diversity present on our campus.  Particularly during this moment of celebration, I call on each member of our community to explore how they might become a more informed and visible ally.


Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion

Dear LSUHSC-NO Community,

Earlier today, a jury found former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, guilty of murder in the death of Mr. George Floyd. And while the verdict marks a new page in the narrative of justice, by no means does it indicate the book has concluded. 

As institutional leaders, we acknowledge the trauma and pain that members of our community, particularly our Black students, faculty, and staff, might be experiencing. With this in mind, we extend our earnest support, empathy, and advocacy and call on every member of our community to confront racism and injustice, wherever it may be found. 

As an institution, we will confront it in our research, as we focus on finding solutions to increase equity and eliminate disparate impacts on historically marginalized populations. We will confront it in our policies, as we actively move towards a more inclusive environment for all members of our organization. We will confront it in our teaching, as we work to examine our blind spots and increase our knowledge of inclusive pedagogical strategies; and we will confront it in our service, through educational programs, patient care and initiatives that focus on the common good. 

As we approach the end of an academic year—one that has been imbued with disruption and change, we call on all our leaders, faculty, staff, students, and campus affiliates to partner with us to dismantle systemic racism and to pursue a climate where every member can thrive.   

In solidarity, 

Larry Hollier, MD                                                           Timothy Fair, PhD

Chancellor                                                                    Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion

Steve Nelson, MD                                                         J. M. Cairo, PhD

Dean, School of Medicine                                          Dean, School of Allied Health Professions

Demetrius Porche, DNS, PhD, ANEF, FACHE,            Robert Laughlin, DMD

FAANP, FAAN                                                                  Dean, School of Dentistry

Dean, School of Nursing

Dean Smith, PhD                                                           Louis Colletta, JD

Dean, School of Public Health                                   Chief of Staff

Joseph Moerschbaecher, PhD                                  Edwin Murray, JD

Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs                     Vice Chancellor for Community Affairs

Dean, School of Graduate Studies

Keith Schroth                                                                J. Christian Winters, MD

Vice Chancellor for Administration & Finance     Vice Chancellor for Clinical Affairs 

Dear Colleague,

I hope this message finds you well. Below, you will find a draft of an email I intend to share with faculty and staff regarding Ramadan. I thought it important to provide you with a copy of this message. Please let me know if you have any questions.  

This week marks the advent of Ramadan, a holy month observed by millions of Muslims around the world. Beginning at sunset this evening, practicing Muslims will devote themselves to a month of increased fasting, prayer, and reflection. As we endeavor to deepen our institution’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, I thought it important to provide a few notes concerning this observance:

  • Ramadan 2021 will begin on the evening of April 12th and ends on the evening of May 12th.
  • During this month, practicing Muslim students, faculty, and staff will be fasting, consuming no food or water, from Dawn until dusk (approximately 4:30am to 8:30pm).
  • Ramadan celebrations often involve prayers late into the night.
  • For adherents observing Ramadan, it is not unusual to stay awake until after midnight for prayers and then rise at 3:30-4am to eat and pray before dawn.
  • Ramadan is scheduled on the lunar year calendar (and the date moves each year).

In an effort to ensure that our campus and classrooms represent a learning and working environment where everyone feels valued, here are a few additional few points to ponder:

  • How might my assumptions influence my interactions with students and colleagues?
  • How might the backgrounds and experiences of my students influence their motivation, engagement and learning?
  • How can I modify future course materials, activities, assignments and/or exams to be more accessible to students?
  • How might I examine and mitigate my implicit biases to consider my unconscious attitudes towards certain groups.

Please know that I am positioned to assist you in the creation of future inclusive pedagogical considerations and strategies. Thank you for all that you do to advance diversity at LSUHSC-NO.


Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion