Recent messages and statements from leadership at UC Davis Health and the Office for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.


CHANCELL-ING: Honoring Native American Heritage Month

UC Davis News published November 4, 2022 by UC Davis Chancellor, Gary S. May.

November is when we observe Native American Heritage Month. In our region, it’s an opportunity to honor the Indigenous people who first called Davis and Yolo County home nearly 2,000 years ago. It’s also a time to celebrate the contributions of Native people everywhere.

For centuries, well before UC Davis and our city took shape, this land was home to the Patwin people. They are respectful stewards of the land and rich in culture. The name “Yolo” itself originates in the Patwin word “Yoloy,” which means “a place of rushes” and is inspired by the area’s wetlands and marshes. Full post


Statement: Resources and Support for Those Impacted by Unrest in Iran

UC Davis News published September 28, 2022 by UC Davis Chancellor, Gary S. May

In recent weeks, Iran has experienced widespread unrest in cities throughout the country, where protests have erupted following the death of Mahsa Amini. We are deeply saddened by the death of Ms. Amini and those who have lost their lives while protesting in Iran. Last week, the UC Davis Iranian Student Association held a memorial service for Ms. Amini.

Full statement

UC Davis Health statement on Roe v. Wade ruling

Published Friday, June 24, 2022, UC Davis Health Friday Update

In California, nothing will change as a result of this court’s decision. The University of California, and UC Davis Health, will continue to provide all services to women, just as we have before.

Full statement


We hear you and we are here for you

UC Davis Health Wednesday Update published September 7, 2022

Whether you are a part of the LGBTQ+ community dealing with fear of monkeypox (MPX), or part of other communities experiencing racism, anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, or other forms of hate, or have experienced loss and trauma, as many have in these recent years, we hear you and we are here for you. Times have been difficult, and we recognize our faculty, staff, students, and contractors are working hard to provide the best patient care in the region while facing challenges on multiple fronts.

Full statement


In observance of Juneteenth

A message from the Office for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, published on June 16, 2022

Dear UC Davis Health and Community Members,

Celebrated for over 150 years, Juneteenth—also known as Freedom Day—honors the day in which news of the Emancipation Proclamation reached enslaved people in Galveston, Texas—a full two years after its signing.

Juneteenth holds a deep meaning in American history, and as Chancellor May wrote, the holiday “encourages us to join together in the name of freedom, justice and the power of community. It inspires us to reflect on the contributions and achievements of African-Americans, past and present.” Henry Louis Gates, Jr. stated, “Juneteenth was, from its earliest incarnations, as Hayes Turner and others have recorded, a past that was ‘usable’ as an occasion for gathering lost family members, measuring progress against freedom and inculcating rising generations with the values of self-improvement and racial uplift” (More from PBS “What is Juneteenth”).

Full statement


Celebrating LGBTQ+ Pride Month

A message from Annie Caruso and Michelle Famula, Co-Chairs of the Vice Chancellor's LGBTQ+ Advisory Council, published on June 3, 2022

On June 12, UC Davis Health and UC Davis faculty, students, and staff will gather in downtown Sacramento to take part in the parade and participate in the annual Sacramento Pride Festival. Join the celebration!

Full statement


Statement by UC Davis Chancellor May on School Shooting in Uvalde, Texas

A message from Chancellor Gary S. May published on May 25, 2022

My daughter Jordan is a preschool teacher. We spent much of yesterday talking about how she would protect herself and her students in an active shooter situation. I am so tired. I grieve for the children whose lives were stolen, and the parents and families whose lives will never be the same because of the gun violence in Uvalde. I can’t stop thinking of these fourth-grade children, their whole lives in front of them, and their loved ones, excited by the end of the school year, and one person with a gun who took that all away.

Full statement


Statement by UC Davis Chancellor May on Buffalo Shootings

A message from Chancellor Gary S. May published on May 15, 2022

People should be able to go to the grocery store without fear. Like you, I am sickened by the shootings in Buffalo yesterday (May 14) that targeted the Black community and took the lives of 10 people. The person who committed this crime admitted to being a racist and to advocating white supremacy.

Full statement


Honoring our Jewish Community

A message from Dr. Hendry Ton, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, posted on April 29, 2022.

We stand with the many Jewish people within UC Davis Health and beyond as Jewish communities all over the world mourn the six million Jewish lives lost during the Holocaust. Yom HaShoah took place at sunset on April 27th through sunset on April 28th within this week that was newly established as the Days Of Remembrance Of Victims Of The Holocaust

Full statement


Statement by UC Davis Chancellor May on Sacramento Shootings

Adapted from UC Davis News and Media Relations, released April 3, 2022

Today’s horrific shootings in downtown Sacramento are shocking and deeply distressing. Our hearts break for those who lost a loved one and for all our colleagues, friends and neighbors who are suffering today.

To our Sacramento community, we offer our condolences and support. We are all interconnected, and days like this remind us that we must do all we can to prevent gun violence. We must put an end to gun violence that impacts families and communities long after headlines turn to other global events.

If you need immediate mental health support, please call Student Health and Counseling Services at 530-752-0871 for an after-hours counseling service consultation. You may also text “RELATE” to 741741 for free, immediate and confidential crisis support by text message.

Faculty and staff can reach out to the Academic and Staff Assistance Program, which serves the Davis and Sacramento campuses.

Full statement from UC Davis News and Media Relations


Celebrating the Principles of Community

Statement from From Dr. Hendry Ton, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

The Principles of Community define who we want to be, and the impact we want to have on our beloved community and world. The Principles serve as an aspirational statement affirming our commitment to the highest standards of civility and decency. This year’s theme spotlights Martin Luther King Jr.’s “six principles of nonviolence.”

Full statement


Principles of Community 2022 events


UC President Drake - Black History Month 

A letter to the UC community from UC President Drake.

University of California President Michael V. Drake, M.D., released the following letter to the UC community (February 1, 2022) regarding Black History Month:

"This month, I encourage everyone at the University of California to take part in celebrations and educational events associated with Black History Month on your campus and in your community, including conversations about the complex history of race and inequality in our country."

Full statement


Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day

UC Davis Health Friday Update posted Friday, January 14, 2022

Dear Colleagues, Martin Luther King Jr. Day next Monday celebrates the historic legacy of a man who brought profound hope and healing to America. His words then – and today – are truly awe-inspiring, and they reflect a life dedicated to standing up for freedom and justice against all the odds. (We encourage you to learn more about Dr. King and support the Beloved Community framework as described by the King Center.

Full statement


Employee Resource Groups build communities of belonging

Posted Friday, November 19, 2021

Dear Colleagues, Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) – the bedrock of a robust organization – are voluntary, employee-led groups made up of individuals that come together based on common interests such as gender, race, ethnicity, ability, and the like. They can truly help establish shared spaces where members of an organization can feel a sense of community and belonging.

Full statement


Holiday and End-of-Year Guidance and Best Practices

Posted Thursday, November 18, 2021

As we venture into the time of year when many of our departments and teams have gathered to celebrate the year’s accomplishments and the holiday seasons, we want to pause and reflect upon past events, contests and gatherings that may not have been as inclusive as intended.

We all want to appreciate and recognize the incredible work that has been accomplished as the calendar year comes to an end, and that can still be done through the many benefits of community building and recognition activities. Throughout the year, and using the UC Davis Principles of Community as our guide, we ask that you review the information below regarding recommended best practices, reflection questions, trainings and resources to create an open dialogue that will inform event/activity planning processes and final products.

Full statement


Stand Against anti-Semitism

Posted Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

Last week, members of our Jewish community recently experienced another incident of anti-Semitism in which a local synagogue in Carmichael was defaced with Nazi symbols. This comes in the context of a concerning rise in anti-Semitism, 75 years after the terrible events of the Holocaust. Hate and discrimination have profound effects, and studies point to the negative health impacts on Jewish people because of this. As part of our endeavor to become an anti-racist institution, I encourage you to join us in standing against anti-Semitism.

Full statement


Celebrating the Principles of Community 

Statement from From Dr. Hendry Ton, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

The Principles of Community define who we want to be, and the impact we want to have on our beloved community and world. The Principles serve as an aspirational statement affirming our commitment to the highest standards of civility and decency. This year’s theme spotlights Martin Luther King Jr.’s “six principles of nonviolence.”

Full statement

Principles of Community 2022 events


Honoring our Jewish Community

A message from Dr. Hendry Ton, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, April 29, 2022.

We stand with the many Jewish people within UC Davis Health and beyond as Jewish communities all over the world mourn the six million Jewish lives lost during the Holocaust. Yom HaShoah took place at sunset on April 27th through sunset on April 28th within this week that was newly established as the Days Of Remembrance Of Victims Of The Holocaust.

Full statement


Statement denouncing anti-Semitism and Islamophobia

Posted Monday, June 7, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

Last Wednesday, Chancellor May and Vice Chancellor Tull sent a statement denouncing anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. In the recent weeks, our country has seen a rise in hate and bias against Jewish and Muslim people, among which have been a reported rise in harassment and violence against Jewish people, hateful vandalism of mosques and synagogue, and Islamophobic comments and images on social media. The pain and impact of these hateful acts is uniquely felt in each of these beloved communities. They occur in the context of a long legacy of oppression, bias, and discrimination endured by each community.

Full statement


UC Davis and UC Davis Health recognized by Forbes as one of best employers for diversity in 2021

Posted Friday, May 28, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

Congratulations! Both UC Davis & UC Davis Health have been recognized by Forbes yet again as one of the best employers for diversity in 2021. This recognition reflects the hard work and dedication our staff puts in to creating a workplace that is diverse, equitable, and inclusive of all people. In 2020, UC Davis Health ranked #101 amongst a list of 500 employers throughout the nation. This year our rank increased to #59, well ahead of Kaiser, which was the only other healthcare organization in California to make the list. Our improved ranking showcases that the efforts we’re making to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion throughout our organization is working.

Full statement


New DEI Webpage - Caring for Our Community: Processing and Responding

Posted Friday, April 23, 2021

Dear friends,

On Tuesday, Derek Chauvin was formally convicted for the murder of George Floyd. Prior to the verdict, Black communities grieved and despite the weight of such grief, they courageously marched to demand justice and humanity. Communities from across the country and from all cultural groups rallied around them in numbers unprecedented in recent memory.

Full statement


Highlights from the Principles of Community virtual celebration, 2021

Posted Thursday, March 25, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

The week of February 22-26, 2021 we celebrated our Principles for Community Week with the theme, “cultural humility”, welcoming 200+ attendees in the virtual space to the Opening Ceremony Event with remarks and messages from Chancellor Gary S. May, Dr. Renetta Garrison Tull, Vice Chancellor of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Dr. David Lubarsky, Vice Chancellor of Human Health Sciences and UC Davis Health CEO, Dr. Lorena Oropeza, Interim Associate Vice Chancellor of Academic Diversity and I.

Full statement


Celebrating the Principles of Community, 2021

Posted Friday, February 19, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

UC Davis Health is a vibrant, multi-layered, dynamically diverse community making a positive difference locally, regionally, and nationally through our research, education, and public service. What makes our great community work are the relationships we have with each other, our patients, and our communities. We strive to treat those around us with dignity, inclusion, and respect. We do this best by not just treating others as we would want to be treated, but by treating others as they would want to be treated.

Full statement


New Associate Dean for Diverse and Inclusive Education for the School of Medicine, Dr. Ruth Shim, to start February, 2021

Posted Friday, January 15, 2021

As the UC Davis School of Medicine’s Luke & Grace Kim Professor in Cultural Psychiatry, director of cultural psychiatry and professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Dr. Shim brings a wealth of expertise and leadership to the School of Medicine and the Office for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion leadership teams. She will design, implement, and sustain equitable pre-medical and medical education through oversight of the Office of Student and Resident Diversity pathways programs. Dr. Shim will also oversee the expansion of the pathways programs and work to ensure that the curriculum and education programs are accessible and relevant to diverse students, residents and fellows.

Full announcement


New Associate Dean for Diverse and Inclusive Learning Communities for the School of Medicine, Dr. Jorge A. Garcia, to start January, 2021

Posted Monday, December 21, 2020

Dr. García is a distinguished faculty member, clinician, mentor, and a respected leader at UC Davis School of Medicine, most recently as Director in the Office of Student and Resident Diversity.  He has extensive expertise creating welcoming and inclusive learning environments that inspire and nurture students and trainees from all backgrounds to meet the health needs of the diverse communities we serve.  He shares and embodies our deep commitment to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in all aspects of education, science and health care. 

Full announcement


Anti-Racism and DEI Action Plan

Posted Friday, June 26, 2020

Hi Everyone,

Over the past few weeks, the HEDI team have been working with partners to plan and take action to address structural racism and advance diversity, equity, and inclusion. We have developed a 4-point plan that includes things that we have done or are doing, things that we will do, and things that you and your department can do. You can find our action plan here. We consider this a living document and will update this as we identify new strategies and make progress on existing actions. We would also love to hear your thoughts, feedback, and what you are doing to address racism and inequities, so feel free to contact us.

In health and solidarity, Hendry

Hendry Ton, M.D., M.S.
Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion


UC Davis nursing school names new Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Dean

Posted Thursday, June 25, 2020

News update from The Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis announcing the appointment of Piri Ackerman-Barger, Ph.D., R.N., to the newly created position of Associate Dean for Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.

Full statement


Action plan following statement on George Floyd

Posted Friday, June 5, 2020

Message from Dr. Hendry Ton, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.

Full statement


Statement in Solidarity with Black Faculty

Posted Sunday, May 31, 2020

Joint message from Kimberly Nettles-Barcelon, Ph.D., CAMPSSAH Faculty Director; Hendry Ton, M.D., M.S., Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion; and Mariel Vazquez, Ph.D., CAMPOS Faculty Director, Michael Rios, Ph.D., Vice Provost, Public Scholarship and Engagement, and Raquel E. Aldana, J.D., Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Diversity.

Full statement


Leadership statement on George Floyd

Posted Sunday, May 31, 2020

Joint message from David A. Lubarsky, M.D., M.B.A., CEO for UC Davis Health; Hendry Ton, M.D., M.S., Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion; and Allison Brashear, M.D., M.B.A. and Stephen Cavanagh, Ph.D., M.P.A., R.N., F.A.C.H.E., F.A.A.N., the deans of the School of Medicine and Betty Irene Moore School of Nursing at UC Davis.

Full statement


Statement on rejecting coronavirus xenophobia

Posted Friday, February 21, 2020

Message from Dr. Hendry Ton, Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Full statement