Psychology professor Isis Settles has been named associate dean of diversity, equity, and inclusion at the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts (LSA) at the University of Michigan. Settles succeeds Tabbye Chavous, who was appointed the university’s vice provost for equity and inclusion and chief diversity officer last month. Settles, who began her term on September 1, 2022, will advise and support DEI-centric efforts, including best practices, scholarship, programming, and events.

“I am excited to welcome Professor Settles as the associate dean for diversity, equity, and inclusion,” said Anne Curzan, dean of LSA. “DEI is core to who we are as a college, as a campus, and as a community. Creating a culture that is inclusive and reflective of the world we live in is one of LSA’s top priorities. Professor Settles’s amazing leadership, extensive research background, and expertise in this space are invaluable to the college, and I look forward to partnering with her in this new role.”

In her role as associate dean for DEI, Settles will work with the Dean’s Office, units across all divisions of the college, and the faculty, student, and staff communities to advocate and lead the college’s strategic DEI plan. 

“Much of my research, teaching, service, and leadership to date have been focused on increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion in higher education,” said Settles. “I am excited to bring my scholarly expertise and experience to this role where I will be able to shape policies and practices that enhance the college for all members of the community—students, staff, and faculty. Joining the Dean’s Office as the planning for DEI 2.0 begins provides me with a wonderful opportunity to support ongoing DEI activities and help launch new initiatives that will improve the college and contribute to its vision of a more inclusive campus.”

A faculty member of the University of Michigan since 2016, Settles is a professor in the Department of Psychology with courtesy appointments in the Department of Afroamerican and African Studies (DAAS) and the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies. Her research examines the experiences, perceptions, and consequences of mistreatment directed at individuals from marginalized social groups and individual (e.g., coping strategies) and structural (e.g., clear policies) processes to mitigate such experiences. Settles is currently working on two higher education-focused research projects that examine scholarly devaluation, and the role of climate, on career outcomes for scholars from marginalized groups. 

Settles’s research has been published extensively, and her work is supported by major grants from the National Science Foundation and National Institutes of Health. She served as the associate director of the U-M ADVANCE program from 2019-2022, and also served on the ADVANCE program’s STRIDE committee (2018-2022) and RISE committee (2020-2022), which aim to improve faculty hiring practices and the climate for faculty, respectively. Settles was a member of the LSA anti-racism task force. Outside of U-M, she has worked with academic professional organizations on faculty development and climate issues.