Women’s Center Welcomes New Director

The Carolina Women’s Center is under new leadership following the hiring of an administrator who directed a similar center at the University of Michigan.

Gloria Thomas, who began work at UNC in early August, had served since 2009 as director of the Center for the Education of Women at Michigan.

Thomas also served as associate director of the Office of Women in Higher Education at the American Council on Education, where she developed a series of leadership programs and curricula to advance and support senior women administrators in higher education. At Michigan, she championed the Center for the Education of Women’s mission to advance diversity and inclusion by serving as a resource, voice and advocate to empower women and nontraditional students.

The nearly 20-year-old Carolina Women’s Center has been “an effective advocate for survivors of sexual assault and violence and a great resource for programs that promote women’s self-empowerment,” Thomas said. “I hope to build upon those strengths by promoting the safety, success and leadership of women on Carolina’s campus as well as continuing to celebrate their accomplishments.”

Thomas earned a doctorate in higher education from Michigan and also holds a master of arts degree in teaching of English from Villanova University and a bachelor of arts degree in English with a concentration in black studies from Swarthmore College.

The Carolina Women’s Center was established in 1997 to address issues related to gender equity and women’s employment and education. It strives to create an inclusive education and work environment where gender is not a barrier to success, difference and diversity are celebrated and everyone is safe to live, learn, teach and work without threat of harm or unequal treatment. The center aims to represent and support the interests of women students, faculty and staff on issues such as violence prevention, diversity and intersectionality, family-friendly workplace policies, professional development and pay equity.

Thomas succeeded Christi Hurt ’93, who also earned a master’s in public administration from Carolina in 1998. Hurt had directed the center while also serving as assistant vice chancellor and chief of staff in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, a position she retains.


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