CELASA
Mary J Wardell-Ghirarduzzi

Mary J Wardell-Ghirarduzzi

Vice Provost for Diversity Engagement and Community Outreach

Dr. Mary Wardell-Ghirarduzzi brings passion for creating more equitable, inclusive and caring campus climate and culture for all. She is an executive leader skilled at building organizational capacity through strategic initiatives with over 20 years experience in California higher education in academic affairs, student life, community engagement, and diversity and inclusion. Currently she is the Vice Provost for Diversity Engagement and Community Outreach and an associate professor of organizations, communication and leadership at the University of San Francisco.

Mary leverages the university's mission and commitment to social justice, equity and inclusion to strengthen the campus for students, faculty and staff and expands the university's community engagement, particularly for multicultural and marginalized communities. She has been a leader in developing a creative framework for how the university's mission can be more fully realized as part of the community it resides within; for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources.  

Mary has created strategic new initiatives including: Diversity Scholar & Visiting ProfessorDiverse Workforce InitiativeStakeholder Community Forums (such as Latinas in Leadership), the DiversityTalks series, and diversity intensives (And Still We RiseAllies in the Academy, and the USF Staff Diversity Intensive) for greater intercultural and interpersonal understanding. These activities promote more inclusive practices within USF and beyond. In 2014, Mary was appointed by Mayor Edwin M. Lee to serve San Francisco citizens as a Library Commissioner for the San Francisco Public Library. Dr. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi was recently awarded the San Francisco Human Rights Commission's Hero Award and listed in Diversity MBA Magazine's Top 100 Under 50 Executive Leaders.

Prior to leading diversity and community initiatives at USF, Mary served as the USF Associate Vice President and Dean of Students leading and supporting campus-wide student services, including behavioral intervention and crisis response. Prior to Jesuit Catholic education, she was the Dean of Student Affairs at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, CA and the Assistant Dean of Students at the California State University, San Marcos, CA. She enjoys the arts and lives in San Francisco with her husband.