Fulbright College Names New Human Resources, Faculty Services, Diversity and Inclusion Team Members

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The Human Resources, Faculty Services and Diversity and Inclusion team in the University of Arkansas' J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences recently hired several team members.

This four-person team leads human resources, faculty services and diversity and inclusion initiatives for the university's largest college —made up of more than 7,600 students, 665 faculty members and 350 staff members with programs spanning the humanities, social sciences, fine arts and natural sciences.

The team's newest addition, Romona West, has been named the new director of diversity and inclusion for the college.

In this role, West will help define and implement a strategic diversity and inclusion vision for the college; help set the college's related goals; coordinate existing and new diversity and inclusion activities; address diversity and inclusion issues and concerns; and collaborate and build relationships with internal stakeholders while engaging with the community on issues and initiatives related to diversity and inclusion.

Donna Bell Draper has served in the Fulbright College Dean's Office since 2001 and has served in her current role of assistant director of faculty services for three years.

In this role, she oversees the promotion and tenure procedures for the college; coordinates faculty annual evaluations, recognition and awards processes; compiles, prepares and collects various college and department reports; oversees adjunct, graduate faculty and emeritus status requests; maintains the college working schedule and tenure-track faculty personnel files; and serves as a resource for staff and faculty.

After serving on the university's central HR team and helping the college's HR team in an interim capacity, Colton Martin permanently joined Fulbright College as its assistant director of HR in the spring.

In this role, he oversees the recruitment process and position requests for faculty and staff while guiding departments through promotions, reclassifications, and performance evaluations. 

Donna Johnson has more than 28 years of service and leadership at the University of Arkansas and rejoined Fulbright College this summer as its senior director of human resources and faculty services.

In this role, she leads the Human Resources, Faculty Services and Diversity and Inclusion team; works with hiring and talent management; performance management; training and development; employee relations; and change management. 

"We are so excited to have Romona and Colton join the Fulbright College family in these essential roles," said Todd Shields, dean of Fulbright College. "Likewise, having Donna Johnson return to her Fulbright College home and having Donna Draper grow in her role here at the college is just fantastic. It's truly a dream team that's been assembled and is ready to help our faculty and staff with all of their needs. The level of professional experience, skill and overall excellence that this team has cannot be understated."

ABOUT ROMONA WEST

Prior to joining Fulbright College, West was the assistant director of graduate recruitment and outreach for the U of A's Graduate School and International Education, where she implemented effective strategies and programs to recruit diverse graduate students and domestic graduate students at large. Previously, she worked for Walmart Stores, Inc. for 16 years leading teams, developing real estate strategies, recruiting talent and developing programs to help retain, engage and grow talent. 

At Walmart, West was a diversity champion for her division, worked on numerous diversity and inclusion initiatives, and served in various capacities for associate resource groups and mentoring circles. In addition to her professional experience, West actively serves in her community via non-profit organizations, local schools and provides pro-bono legal services. 

She served on the Real Estate Associate Program board for three years teaching, recruiting and establishing programs to benefit minorities in the real estate industry. She currently serves on the Fayetteville Public Education Foundation Board, serves as the advisor to the U of A's Black Graduate Student Association and is an active member of the U of A's Diversity Leaders' team and the Sesquicentennial Inclusion Committee. West earned her B.S. in business administration with a focus in accounting and her law degree from the University of Arkansas.

ABOUT DONNA BELL DRAPER

Draper has worked professionally in higher education for almost 30 years, beginning as an admissions counselor for her undergraduate alma mater, Northeast Missouri State University (now Truman State University), in 1988 shortly after earning her B.S. in Mathematics. 

She moved to Fayetteville in 1991 to attend graduate school near family at the University of Arkansas, and she completed her M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration in 1993. Draper was appointed to work for the U of A's Office of Undergraduate Admissions upon earning her graduate degree, and she later worked for the U of A's Cooperative Education program in Career Services before choosing to spend a few years as a stay-at-home mom with small children.

Draper returned to the U of A as a member of the Fulbright College Dean's Office nearly 18 years ago and proceeded to serve the next 15 years as assistant to the dean for academic affairs, responsible for overseeing the college schedule of classes, academic program changes, annual catalog revisions, and data queries for the college and departments.  She joined the newly formed Fulbright College Human Resources team in January of 2017.

ABOUT COLTON MARTIN

Martin, a U of A alumnus, joined the university in 2016 as an HR specialist with the central Human Resources team after earning his bachelor's degree in anthropology from Fulbright College.

In 2017, Martin became the head of the university's RazorTemps Temporary Staffing Program and served as the HR partner for the Office of the Chancellor, the Office of the Provost, the Arkansas Archaeological Survey, University Libraries' Mullins' Library, the Graduate School of International Education, and Fulbright College.

Martin joined the Fulbright College Human Resources team full time in spring 2019. Additionally, he serves the city of Goshen as a councilman and head of Goshen's HR taskforce.

ABOUT DONNA JOHNSON

Johnson, a U of A alumna, has over 28 years of service and leadership experience on campus. Working in a range of positions during that time, including at the University Libraries, Department of Physics, Fulbright College, and most recently, serving as the director of Human and Fiscal Resources in the Office of the Provost, her focus has always included people.

In addition, Johnson has served with the Office for Diversity and Inclusion, assisting with HR and accounting, working on the Inclusion Team, and participating as a Champion. She also works with the Project One initiative as a subject matter expert and Change Champion. Whether working in the area of customer service, office management, diversity and inclusion, finance or human resources, her passion remains to help others thrive and succeed in an inclusive environment.

It has been her joy to return home to Fulbright College as the senior director of human resources and faculty services in a team of extraordinarily talented individuals.

A version of this story also appeared in the Fulbright REVIEW.

Contacts

Andra Parrish Liwag, director of communications
J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences
479-575-4393, liwag@uark.edu

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