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UW Chief Diversity Officer Patrick Sims named provost at University of North Carolina School of the Arts


Chief Diversity Officer and Deputy Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion Patrick Sims has been named the new executive vice chancellor and provost at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts, a top-ranked creative and performing arts conservatory in Winston-Salem, N.C.

“We have worked hard and successfully over these last seven years to help make UW a better place,” Sims told UW news. “Although this work is never finished, I will miss the many talented and committed colleagues and programs that are making a difference in the lives of our community.”Sims has served as UW–Madison’s chief diversity officer since 2013, first on an interim basis and then permanently since May 2015 when he was named vice provost for diversity & climate. He was later promoted in 2018 to the role of deputy vice chancellor, when he was named the inaugural Elzie Higginbottom Vice Provost and Chief Diversity Officer, the first endowed CDO position in the nation.

“I am also grateful for and humbled by the opportunity to join one of the nation’s premier performing arts conservatories at this critical time in our nation’s history,” he adds. “I look forward to highlighting the vital role the arts can play in our society and their impact on our sense of humanity.”

At UW, Sims oversees the Division of Diversity, Equity and Educational Achievement which supports the mission of the University of Wisconsin-Madison as it works to create a diverse, inclusive, and excellent learning and work environment for all students, faculty, staff, alumni and others who partner with the university. An interim successor to Sims is expected to be named in the near future.

“Patrick has made a major impact on our community and we will miss him deeply, but I understand that this is a career opportunity he can’t turn down,” says Chancellor Rebecca Blank in a statement. “We know there is much more to be done to increase the diversity of our university community and to make those who are here feel more welcome and included.  Patrick has been an important leader in these efforts. Our commitment is strong and will continue.”