LeManuel “Lee” Bitsóí

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Director of the Diversity Collaborative, Fort Lewis College

LeManuel Lee Bitsóí (Diné), EdD, is a critical ethnographer and bioethicist who currently serves as Director of the Diversity Collaborative at Fort Lewis College. Prior to Fort Lewis College, Dr. Bitsóí was chief diversity officer for Stony Brook University and served in administrative and faculty positions at Harvard, Dartmouth, Georgetown and most recently, Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. In addition, Dr. Bitsóí serves on several national boards and associations, including the National Advisory Council (NAC) for the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity (NCORE), the National Research Advisory Council (NRAC) for the Department of Veterans Affairs, and Chairs the Native American Affairs Committee for the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS).

Dr. Bitsóí earned a bachelor of science degree with honors from the University of New Mexico (1995), where he was initiated into the prestigious Phi Beta Kappa Honor Society.  He holds a master of education degree from Harvard University (1998) where he was initiated into another prestigious honor society—Phi Delta Kappa.  Dr. Bitsóí earned a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania (2007) where his research focused on access and equity issues for Native Americans in higher education, a subject upon which he continues to publish.

Admirably, Dr. Bitsóí has devoted his career to broadening the participation of underrepresented, underserved and unmentioned students to become scientists, researchers and scientifically-informed community members.  Dr. Bitsóí relies on indigenous epistemologies to guide his work and emphasizes that diversity is a constantly evolving, interdependent ecosystem that requires mindful participation by everyone.  Dr. Bitsóí has been honored and recognized for his diversity and inclusion work by various organizations including the Navajo Nation, Harvard Medical School, University of Central Florida, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Northern Arizona University and the North American Indian Center of Boston.