Emerson College, much-maligned over its failure to promote diverse faculty, has filled the new position of associate vice president for diversity and inclusion.

Calling it a “cabinet level position,” outgoing Emerson President Jackie Liebergott promises the VP will help the college achieve greater diversity and “to provide a central focus for our efforts to recruit and retain more faculty and staff of color, and to oversee ongoing diversity dialogue and training programs.”

Emerson filled the position internally. Gwen Bates, currently the associate vice president for human resources and affirmative action, where she has served since 2006, will take the new title March 15. She will also chair the search committee to replace herself in HR.

“Gwen is ideally suited to fill these important positions,” Liebergott said in a statement Friday. “She has demonstrated a commitment to both inclusion and diversity and has earned the trust and respect of faculty and staff alike. These qualities, combined with a 30-year track record of achievement in both corporate and academic environments, will stand her in good stead.”

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John Guilfoil is the editor-in-chief of Blast: Boston's Online Magazine and the Blast Magazine Network. He can be reached at [email protected]. Tweet @johnguilfoil.

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