Greater Albany Public Schools announced on Monday that Javier Cervantes would be joining the district as the executive director of equity, diversity and inclusion.
“Javier Cervantes is a leader in equity work both locally and throughout Oregon,” GAPS Superintendent Melissa Goff said. “The assets he brings to GAPS will accelerate our work to build equitable systems that create outstanding outcomes for all of our students and families. ¡Bienvenido, Javier!”
Cervantes, who will leave his post as the director of institutional equity, diversity and inclusion at Linn-Benton Community College on June 21, brings with him 20 years of experience in equity work and strong ties to Albany.
His new role, GAPS said, would see him providing oversight of the district's equity and inclusion initiatives, including supporting the implementation of effective antiracist and equity-minded practices with a specific focus toward historically marginalized students and staff.
“I am excited to join Greater Albany Public Schools because GAPS is my community,” Cervantes said. “I have a passion and an expertise for the work of equity, diversity and inclusion and I know that many, many people in GAPS have that passion as well. All the potential partnerships and collaborations are truly exciting. All of this and getting to work with a committed leadership team that is dedicated to equitable outcomes for all students, inclusion of the various lived experiences that is embodied by the students and their families that attend GAPS, is something I want to be a part of. I am excited that I can be a contributor and collaborator.”
Prior to his work at LBCC, Cervantes served as associate dean and director of the Department of Student Diversity and Multicultural Affairs at Loyola University of Chicago from September 2008 through June of 2011. He also has previous experience at Oregon State University, where he served as the director of the Center for Access and Success in Academics Latino/a for seven years.
A first-generation Oregonian who was classified as an English-language learner in school, Cervantes earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Oregon and a master's in public administration, cross-cultural management from Portland State University. He is currently two years into a doctoral program through Oregon State University.
"I am excited to get started and to work with everyone," Cervantes said. "My door is open so, come on in."
CAITLYN M. MAY can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org