Nearly 10 months ago, we sent a message of solidarity to you in the wake of George Floyd’s death, acknowledging the systemic racism at work in our society and calling on our community to draw strength from one another during those difficult days. Today, the criminal justice system has found Derek Chauvin guilty of George Floyd’s murder.
The trial has been a difficult experience, causing us—in particular, the Black members of our community—to relive the grief, despair, and anger of that tragic incident. This was exacerbated by the images we have seen in the news of alarming occurrences of violent encounters that people of color have had with police. We all know and we have all seen that racism continues to pervade our society. Clearly, we have more work to do.
As each of us responds in our own way to the verdict and the emotions it evokes, I encourage you to engage with and support each other. It is at times such as these that we are fortunate to be members of a community that cares about each other and about eliminating the injustices in our society.
We will be holding a racial healing space in affinity for Black-identifying faculty, staff, and students from noon to 1 p.m. this coming Friday, April 23. Next week, we will offer a session focused on action-oriented measures we can all take; this session will be open to all members of the university community.
In closing, we hope that today’s news reminds us to continuously commit ourselves to reforming and healing our nation, starting here at home with our efforts to become an anti-racist institution. We must continue this vital work and look to each other for the strength and energy to realize our vision of a better world for all.
Tony Monaco, President
Nadine Aubry, Provost and Senior Vice President
Mike Howard, Executive Vice President
Joe Auner, Dean, University College
Peter Bates, Dean, School of Medicine
Nancy Bauer, Dean, School of the Museum of Fine Arts
Sarah Booth, Director, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging
Alastair Cribb, Dean, Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine
James M. Glaser, Dean, School of Arts and Sciences
Daniel Jay, Dean, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences
Nadeem Karimbux, Dean, School of Dental Medicine
Rachel Kyte, Dean, The Fletcher School
Rob Mack, Associate Provost and Chief Diversity Officer, Medford/Somerville and Boston SMFA
Dariush Mozaffarian, Dean, Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy
Jianmin Qu, Dean, School of Engineering
Joyce Sackey, Associate Provost and Chief Diversity Officer, Health Sciences Campuses
Alan Solomont, Dean, Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life