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UMGC Global Media Center
Sharon Jackson Wilder Joins UMGC as Vice President and Chief Diversity and Equity Officer

Bob Ludwig
By Bob Ludwig

Adelphi, Md. (Feb. 14, 2024)—University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC) has named Sharon Jackson Wilder, Esq., as vice president and chief diversity and equity officer. Wilder is an accomplished business leader and coalition builder who most recently served as the inaugural chief equity and inclusion officer at Montgomery College (MC) in Maryland.

“Sharon brings a depth and breadth of experience in all facets of building intentional awareness of DEIB issues as a practitioner, scholar, attorney, professor, trainer and researcher,” said UMGC President Gregory Fowler. “Her success at Montgomery College—a close UMGC partner with a mission and commitment to underserved populations that aligns with our own—is testimony to her leadership, innovative spirit and expertise.”

At Montgomery College, Wilder was responsible for developing strategy and policy, planning, implementation, and collaboration with institutional stakeholders, working to ensure that concepts of diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB) were reflected institution-wide in policies, decisions, programs, planning and initiatives. She also developed key frameworks for this work including creating the “Cycle of Change Model” which is used by various colleges and universities across the country.

“I am excited to join the university and bring a collaborative approach that builds upon the good work that is already underway and the commitment by leadership to accelerate the work in DEIB,” said Wilder. “UMGC’s mission and values speak to me and align with my own beliefs and values. I love the opportunity to come together to learn, solve problems and innovate.”

In the space of just six years, Wilder grew MC’s Office of Equity and Inclusion from her single position to a staff, including faculty collaborators, of 14. Besides establishing the office, she created significant DEIB programming, bringing scholars to each of the campuses to engage with the college community.

She established and led the President’s Advisory Committee on Equity and Inclusion at MC, led a strategic planning effort focused on building a diverse, equitable working, teaching and learning environment for students and employees, and led development of the MC’s 2020–25 Equity and Inclusion Roadmap for Success.

Prior to her role at Montgomery College, Wilder served as vice president of two firms in the architectural, engineering, and construction space, where she managed diversity and inclusion initiatives, served as the Cabinet-level director of the state education office and as a senior policy advisor in the Executive Office of the Mayor in Washington, D.C., and was the president of a consulting firm that assisted non-profits, colleges and universities and for-profit businesses in government and community relations; diversity, equity and inclusion; community planning and business development.

Wilder also served as the director of the Office of University Affairs, Civic Engagement and Community Programs, and adjunct professor at the University of the District of Columbia (UDC), where she taught Race and the Law, Legislation, Disability Law, Labor and Employment Law, Political Science and Civil Rights Law in both the David A. Clarke School of Law and in the political science department.

She is a member of the National Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education, National Forum for Black Public Administrators, American Association of University Women, American Association of Colleges and Universities, and the National Bar Association. She also serves on several boards including the Advisory Board of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, the Executive Board of the National Coalition of 100 Black Women Metro DC and as President of The Society, Inc. of Howard County Maryland.

Wilder holds a BA in political science and African American studies from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and a JD from the Georgetown University Law Center, as well as Certified Public Manager credentials from George Washington University and the Maryland Equity and Inclusion Leadership Program at the University of Baltimore.