Olga Diaz mug


EAU CLAIRE — UW-Eau Claire has chosen a new vice chancellor for equity, diversity and inclusion and student affairs.

Olga Diaz, a higher education administrator in California, will begin at UW-Eau Claire June 14, the university announced Monday.

Diaz is replacing Warren Anderson, who joined UW-Eau Claire in 2019 and left in December to become the UW System’s senior equity, diversity and inclusion officer.

Diaz has been director of student success and equity at Palomar College in San Marcos, Calif., since 2015, according to UW-Eau Claire.

“I am excited to welcome Olga to our leadership team at UW-Eau Claire,” said Chancellor James Schmidt in a news release. “Throughout her career, Olga has shown a passionate commitment to serving students, especially to ensuring underrepresented groups have the opportunity to pursue their higher education dreams. UW-Eau Claire aspires to be an inclusive and equitable learning community, and I am confident Olga can help our campus reach that goal.”

A California native, Diaz has connections and has been a visitor to the Chippewa Valley community. Her husband grew up in Eau Claire, and her father-in-law James Phillip “Phil” Griffin was a former UW-Eau Claire philosophy professor and a chair of the philosophy and religious studies department, according to the university.

Before working at Palomar College, Diaz was director of employment services at Interfaith Community Services in North San Diego County and was a senior research analyst at Santa Clara University, according to the university. She was also the first elected person of color on the City Council in Escondido, Calif., where she served for 12 years.

“I am incredibly proud and excited to join the Blugold family,” Diaz said in the news release. “The UW-Eau Claire campus community has done great work to center diversity, equity and inclusion as core values.”

Diaz has a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Santa Clara University and a master’s degree in public administration from San Diego State University.

She is also enrolled in a doctoral program in organizational change and leadership at the University of Southern California.

Sarah Seifert is the L-T's education and health reporter. She has worked as a journalist in the Chippewa Valley since 2017 and joined the L-T in 2019. Get in touch at sarah.seifert@ecpc.com or on Twitter @sarahaseifert.