David L. Boren, JD

President, University of Oklahoma

The INSIGHT Into Diversity Giving Back Award honors college presidents and chancellors who go above and beyond their everyday duties to give back to their institutions and communities. President Boren was nominated by colleagues and selected by INSIGHT Into Diversity as a 2016 Giving Back Award recipient for his dedication to promoting diversity and inclusion and encouraging community service both on his campus and in the surrounding community. 

Civic Involvement
Founder of the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence, which recognizes outstanding public school students and teachers and helps establish private foundations to give grants to local public schools

Campus Community Service
Ten years ago, Boren and his wife started an Arbor Day community service project at the University of Oklahoma (OU). In spring 2015, 150 students and faculty and staff members partnered with university landscaping staff to plant 74 trees across campus. It is estimated that the campus community has planted nearly 1,300 trees since 2007.

Diversity and Inclusion Actions
Mandated that all incoming students participate in the Diversity and Inclusivity Experience, a five-hour curriculum-based training, and that faculty and staff participate in online diversity training; established the Office of University Community, charged with increasing faculty, staff, and student diversity and inclusion; mandated that each dean appoint a director of diversity and inclusion within their college; created an LGBTQ Lounge on campus to provide more inclusive spaces for students

Recognition of Native Americans
During his tenure, Boren has emphasized the importance of the Native American community by elevating OU’s Native American Studies Program to a department, creating a Native Nations Center, and appointing a tribal liaison officer.

Nomination Excerpt
“David Boren’s academic career as a university president has been marked by putting students first [and] listening to and addressing their concerns. While [he] recognizes the ongoing work to create a more diverse and inclusive environment, he has structurally put in place significant programs that will improve diversity and inclusivity on OU’s campus for years to come.”