Skip Navigation
Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity Management National Institutes of Health Office of Equal Opportunity & Diversity Management Office of Equal Opportunity & Diversity Management Department of Health and Human Services
Home Page > Diversity & Inclusion > NIH Diversity Council

NIH Diversity Council


I have the honor and privilege of welcoming you to the NIH Diversity Council (NIHDC) webpage. On behalf of the Diversity Council members, I would like to thank each of you for joining us and the many NIH employees who are committed to supporting and contributing to NIH’s diversity efforts.

I am very excited about the opportunity to participate as a part of the NIH Diversity Council. A little over a month ago, after extensive discussion with the current Council members, I meet with Mr. Lawrence Self, Director of NIH's Office of Equal Employment Opportunity and Diversity Management to discuss the vision and direction for the Diversity Council here at NIH. We discussed some of the history (the past), some of the current issues/events (present) and what’s next (the future). I left that meeting with the theme “At the Cross Roads of Diversity: From the Past, at the Present, and into the Future.”

As I reviewed the history of Diversity here at NIH, I realized that managing diversity became an integral part of the mission of the NIH back in 1995, when the multi-dimensional diversity initiative was introduced to the NIH during a meeting called the Diversity Congress (a two-and half day gathering of 115 delegates representing the NIH's Institutes and Centers (IC) and several employee advocacy groups). As a result of the Congress, the Workplace Diversity Initiative (WDI) was developed and has continued to receive tremendous support from the leadership of the NIH (stemming from the NIH Directors down through each IC to the individual employees). Initially the Workplace Diversity Initiative developed the NIH-wide Diversity Council with representation from diverse communities such as scientific, administrative, and wage grade occupations as well as employees of different ages, races, genders, sexual orientations, physical abilities, and ethnic backgrounds.

The Council's role has evolved over the years. Currently, the Council serves as an advisory committee for the OEODM Director and management officials on policies, programs, and areas of diversity that need to be addressed to maintain and improve it’s policies to manage the diversity of its approximately 18,000 employees and scientific trainees by building an inclusive work force, fostering an environment that respects the individual, and offering opportunities for all persons to develop to their full potential.

Moving forward the council will look at “What’s Next” and how we can assist leadership with maintaining and continuing to improve diversity here at the NIH.

We encourage your continued participation to ensure the success of the NIH Diversity Council. True success will be possible with the involvement of all twenty-seven NIH Institutes, leadership, and individuals who support and believe in diversity.

Again, thank you for joining us. We invite you to be part of this initiative and to join our efforts to continue to enhance diversity at NIH.


/Dexter E. Collins/
Dexter E. Collins, MPA
Chairman, NIH Diversity Council

“At the Cross Roads of Diversity: From the Past, at the Present, and into the Future.”