Oct. 1, 2021—Aurora, Colo.—Angela Marquez, a seasoned higher-education leader, has been named vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion at the Community College of Aurora, reaffirming the college’s commitment to DEI work and removing any barriers to starting and completing college for students. Her appointment is effective today.

Marquez had been CCA’s vice president of student affairs since January 2020. She came to CCA from Metropolitan State University of Denver, where she was the special assistant to the president for HSI (Hispanic Serving Institution) and executive director for inclusion and HSI. At MSU Denver, she led a 60-member cross-functional HSI implementation team and cochaired the President’s Council of Academic Excellence and Student Success. 

“The Community College of Aurora is excited to appoint Dr. Angela Marquez to this historic role as vice president for diversity, equity and inclusion,” CCA President Mordecai Brownlee said. “Undoubtedly, Dr. Marquez has both the educational and experiential background to lead the college in the advancement of equitable student success, inclusive excellence and our commitment to student servingness as a proud Hispanic Serving Institution.” 

As part of her new role, Marquez will establish and oversee a new Center for Multicultural Student Services at the college. Serving students from more than 60 countries, CCA is by far the most diverse college in Colorado. Additionally, 61 percent of its students are minorities.

CCA’s DEI work began in earnest in 2015, when it created a new special assistant to the president for diversity, equity and inclusion position. Since then, the college has made significant strides in the DEI space. In 2016, CCA became an HSI, a designation given to higher-education institutions whose overall enrollment is made up of at least 25 percent Hispanic students. Only 17 percent of all colleges and universities across the country are HSIs. In 2019, CCA received the American Association of Community Colleges Advancing Diversity Award—a national recognition of the college’s efforts to create an equitable and inclusive environment for students, faculty and staff. Six months later, the college was awarded a $2.85 million federal grant by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Education to eliminate equity gaps and increase retention, completion and transfer outcomes for Hispanic and other students of color.

“I am excited to help lead in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in all aspects of the Community College of Aurora,” Marquez said. “My passion for this work and professional experience are directly aligned with the important direction we are taking as an institution to advance an inclusive community of learners. I am looking forward to partnering with the campus and the broader community in increased efforts that value the diverse perspectives and identities of our highly diverse population, and are centered on working towards policies, practices and programming designed to educate, engage and prepare all students for completion and their path toward employment. CCA is poised in the critical space of providing access and opportunity to all and I am proud to be part of this work.”

Marquez holds a doctorate degree in education and human resources, with a specialization in higher education and educational leadership, from Colorado State University. She holds two master’s degrees (in psychology and in adult learning, training and development) and a bachelor’s degree (also in psychology) from Regis University. She’s also a U.S. Army veteran.