DePaul University Newsline > Sections > Campus and Community > DePaul names José Perales interim VP for Institutional Diversity & Equity

DePaul names José Perales interim VP for Institutional Diversity & Equity

Experienced program director takes reins at key office

José Perales presents to an audience
José Perales, shown here in 2016 at the President's Diversity Council Reception, has directed operations in the Office of Institutional Diversity & Equity since 2009. (DePaul University/Jeff Carrion)
Elevating an experienced department leader, DePaul has named José Perales interim vice president for Institutional Diversity & Equity, President Robert L. Manuel announced.

Perales, who starts his new role on July 1, has been director of operations at DePaul's Office of Institutional Diversity & Equity since 2009. His broader professional career features more than 35 years working in diversity spaces.

According to Perales, DePaul's mission of Vincentian personalism — respect for each individual's dignity and humanity — dovetails naturally with the work of the Office of Institutional Diversity & Equity.

"The mission is a very strong foundation for anything that has to do with DEI work," he says. "When we're respecting the humanity of the individual, then everything else derives from that."

Perales says projects that give him particular pride from his time at DePaul include aiding in the creation of the BUILD Diversity Certificate program, a perspective-enriching training program for all faculty and staff, and his collaboration with Native Peoples in crafting the university's first universal Land Acknowledgement.

He holds a master's degree in education from the University of Illinois Chicago. He is at work on a doctorate from Illinois State University. In his new position, Perales will report to Manuel and take a seat on the Joint Council.

"We appreciate the continuity of leadership that José brings to the interim role for our students, faculty, and staff," Manuel says. "He has built excellent working relationships across many departments over his nearly 14 years at DePaul. His commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion will directly benefit our university community, and I'm grateful to him for taking on this role."

Perales takes the reins from Elizabeth Ortiz, who is retiri​ng on June 30 after more than two decades of exemplary service to DePaul.

"Liz is a national thought leader, and she's been a mentor to many, including myself," Perales says. "It's a hard act to follow, but aspiring to do that will be a tribute to her legacy."

DePaul will share more information about the national search for the next vice president for Institutional Diversity & Equity when it becomes available.