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Brenda J. Allen - Biography

Vice Chancellor, Diversity and Inclusion

Brenda Allen
​Dr. Brenda J. Allen

​Dr. Brenda J. Allen is the Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus. She also is a Professor of Communication. Her scholarship focuses on organizational communication, power, and social identity.

Dr. Allen was recruited from Howard University to the University of Colorado Boulder in 1989 as an Assistant Professor, where she earned tenure and promotion to Associate Professor.  She joined CU Denver's Communication Department in 2001. Since then, she has been promoted to Professor, and she has served as a Department Chair and Associate Dean in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.  She was appointed Chief Diversity Officer for CU Denver and CU Anschutz in 2012. 

Among Dr. Allen's numerous publications is a groundbreaking book entitled Difference Matters: Communicating Social Identity. She presents keynote speeches, conducts workshops, and offers consultation on topics such as inclusive leadership, inclusion in the workplace, strategic planning, implicit bias, culturally responsive teaching, empowerment, and recruitment/retention practices.

Dr. Allen has received numerous recognitions, including: the first Annual Award for Outstanding Achievement for Commitment to Diversity at CU Denver; a Women in Leadership and Management Award (named in honor of Wilma J. Webb, former legislator and Denver's first African-American first lady); the first Annual Ally of the Year Award from the GLBT Alliance at CU Boulder; the Elizabeth D. Gee Memorial Lectureship Award ​from the University of Colorado System, which honors an outstanding faculty member for efforts to advance women in academia, interdisciplinary scholarly contributions, and distinguished teaching; and, the Excellence in Leadership Award ​from CU System's Excellence in Leadership Program.

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