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Diversity Summit on Inclusive Excellence


Advance registration is required for all events. Please use the links at left.

Dorceta E. Taylor

James E. Crowfoot Collegiate Professor; Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
School for Environment and Sustainability, University of Michigan

Professor Taylor's research interests include urban agriculture, food access, and food insecurity; institutional diversity; analysis of the composition of the environmental workforce; social movement analysis; environmental justice; leisure and natural resource use; poverty; and race, gender, and ethnic relations. Her current research includes an assessment of food access in Michigan and other parts of the country. A recently-published article on food justice in Detroit entitled, Food Availability and the Food Desert Frame in Detroit: An Overview of the City's Food Systemstates (Environmental Practice), exemplify this work.

Other recent research activities include the 2014 national report analyzing racial and gender diversity in the environmental field -- see The State of Diversity in Environmental Organizations: Mainstream NGOs, Foundations, and Government Agencies. Her 2009 book, The Environment and the People in American Cities (Duke University Press), is an award-winning urban environmental history book. She published an edited volume in 2010 entitled, Environment and Social Justice: An International Perspective (Emerald Press). She published Toxic Communities: Environmental Racism, Industrial Pollution, and Residential Mobility (NYU Press) in 2014. Her newest book, Power, Privilege, and Environmental Protection: Social Inequality and the Rise of the American Conservation Movement (Duke University Press) is currently in press; it is slated for publication in 2015.


  • 2013-2015: Mott Foundation. An Assessment of Cross-Cultural Collaboration and Environmental Advocacy in the Great Lakes Region. $100,000.
  • 2013-2015: Joyce Foundation. An Assessment of Cross-Cultural Collaboration and Environmental Advocacy in the Great Lakes Region. $100,000.
  • 2012-2017: US Department of Agriculture. "Examining Disparities in Food Access and Enhancing the Food Security of Underserved Populations in Michigan." $4,000,000.
  • 2011: IRLEE – Office of the Vice Provost for Research seed research grant, $15,000
  • 2011: School of Natural Resources and Environment faculty research grant, $15,000.


  • Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, School for Environment and Sustainability, University of Michigan. (2015-2018).
  • James E. Crowfoot Collegiate Chair. University of Michigan (2015).
  • Fred Buttel Outstanding Contribution to the Field of Environmental Sociology Award. The Environment and Technology Section of the American Sociological Association (2015).
  • Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies Outstanding Alumnus Award (2015)
  • Carol Hollenshead Award for Excellence in Promoting Equity and Social Change. The Center for the Education of Women. University of Michigan (2014).
  • Winner of the 2010 Allan Schnaiberg Outstanding Publication Award from the Environment and Technology Section of the American Sociological Association

Nick Tilsen

founding Executive Director of the Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation

Nick is a citizen of the Oglala Lakota Nation, and a father of four children. Nick has over 15 years of experience in working with non-profits and tribal nations on projects that have a social mission. As the founding executive director of Thunder Valley CDC Nick has played a vital role in creating a community development organization that is working with the local grassroots people and national organizations in the development of a sustainable regenerative community, that creates jobs, builds homes and creates new opportunity on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation. Since 2013 Nick has served as a local point of contact for President Obama's Ladders of Opportunity Initiative, working to make targeted investments into America's poorest communities. This community based grassroots work has led Tilsen to become a National leader in the Equity Movement. In 2014 Tilsen was selected as an ASHOKA Fellow joining a global network of the worlds leading social innovators.

Nick works tries to bridge governmental and philanthropic partnerships that are centered around getting resources into the hands of people who are leading positive social change work on the ground in Native American Communities. In 2016 Nick was selected as Rockefeller Foundation Fellow on Global Social Innovation. Nick sits on the boards of the Indigenous Peoples Power Project, the Water Protector Legal Collective and helped with on the ground organizing in the fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline in Standing Rock. Nick firmly believes in the that we both need to defend Indigenous nations from negative resource extraction while at the same time building the sustainable and regenerative communities of tomorrow.