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"We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads are equal in value no matter what their color.” - Maya Angelou

Featured DEI Awards and Recognition for PPCC during the 2019-2020 Academic Year

  • Pikes Peak Community College received the 2019 Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine in September 2019. It was the second consecutive year that PPCC received the award.  
  • Pikes Peak Community College was ranked as The Military Times’ "Best for Vets: Colleges 2020" in October 2019 making PPCC one of only two community colleges in the state to receive this honor. PPCC ranks 12th in the nation among two-year colleges. 
  • Pikes Peak Community College was awarded the 2020-2021 Military Friendly® Schools bronze distinction in February 2020. The bronze distinction is for colleges with exceptional military and veteran programs.
  • PPCC hosted the first ever joint session between the Colorado Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (CoADOHE) and the Colorado Community College System (CCCS) Equity and Inclusion Council in October 2019.

  • Keith R. Barnes, Executive Director for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, was elected as the Vice President for the Colorado Association of Diversity Officers in Higher Education (CoADOHE) in July 2019.

  • The Colorado Springs Business Journal recognized Ben Gallegos-Pardo, the PPCC Coordinator of Multicultural Student Retention Initiatives, as a Rising Star in March 2020.
  • Ben Gallegos-Pardo and Terrell Brown, Multicultural Student Success Coach, were both selected to participate in the inaugural Colorado Springs Mayor's Civic Fellowship program given their work on campus and in the community.
  • Paul DeCecco, Director for Military and Veterans Programs, led an effort to push for Colorado House Bill 1275 providing in-state tuition status at a community college for military families regardless of whether Colorado domicile status is satisfied. The bill was signed into law by Colorado Governor Jared Polis on March 27, 2020. 

2020 PPCC DEI Award Recipients:

  • Student of the Year – Mario Rivera Garcia, Latinx Student Union Student Leader
  • Colorado Community College System Student Excellence Award: Inclusive Excellence Champion – Tiara Reid, Black Student Union President and Co-Chairperson for the Real Talk Women's Forum
  • Faculty/Instructor of the Year – Karen Summerson, Director for the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning (Professional Development Workshops, New Faculty Academy), Faculty Leader for the USC Center for Urban Education Equity Project
  • Staff Member of the Year – Yuri Grijalva-Perry, Bilingual Spanish Admissions and Recruitment Specialist
  • Community Leadership – Carmen Abeyta, Co-Chairperson for El Cinco de Mayo, Inc. and the Colorado Springs Latino Community Luncheon

       Distinguished Service: 

  • Yolanda Avila, PPCC Alumnus, Colorado Springs City Council Woman for District 4 (awarded in October 2019) 
  • Belenda Cornelius, Admissions and Recruitment Specialist, Ethnic Student Enrichment Program
  • Jacquelyn Gaiters-Jordan, PPCC Instructor, Faculty, Dean, and Associate Vice President, Developmental Education
  • Jessie Pocock, PPCC Alumnus, Executive Director for the Colorado Springs Inside Out Youth Services and former Vice Chairperson for the Colorado Civil Rights Commission
  • Ron Shields, Retired Program Manager for Military and Veterans Programs

2019 PPCC DEI Award Recipients:

  • Student of the Year - Chelsea Barrett, Black Student Union President
  • Staff Member of the Year - Michael Reyes, Federal TRiO Student Support Services Transition Specialist
  • Faculty of the Year - Dr. Dennis Natali, Business Professor 
  • Outstanding Community Leader Award - The Honorable Regina Walter, Retired Colorado Fourth Judicial District Judge and founder of both the Educating Children of Color Summit and Diversity University  

      Distinguished Service Awards -

  • Ron Stallworth, aka the BlakKklansman, PPCC Alumnus, retired law enforcement officer and author of the book, "Black Klansman: Race, Hate, and the Undercover Investigation of a Lifetime (2014)" (awarded in September 2018)
  • Joe Garcia, Esq., past PPCC President and current Colorado Community College System Chancellor (awarded in September 2018)
  • Dr. Lance Bolton, current PPCC President 
  • Rieko McAdams, retiring Japanese Professor
  • Donnettee Patterson, retiring American Sign Language Faculty 

2018 PPCC DEI Award Recipients:

  • Student of the Year - Dulce Estrada Gomez (PPCC Student)

  • Staff Member of the Year - Konrad Schlarbaum,
    Coordinator of Sustainability, Student Life 

  • Faculty of the Year - Sarah Shaver, Theater Faculty

  • Outstanding Community Leader Award - 
    Alana Mitchell (PPCC Student)

  • Distinguished Service Award - Dr. Regina Lewis,
    Chair and Professor, Communication Department 

2017 PPCC DEI Award Recipients:

  • Student of the Year - Nzallah Whong, Global Village Facilitator

  • Staff Member of the Year - Kristina Charfauros, Administrative Assistant & Events Coordinator, Student Life

  • DEI Faculty of the Year - Katherine Sturdevant, Professor, History