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VCU Health appoints inaugural director of diversity, equity and inclusion

Marcelle Wilson Davis brings 20 years of experience in inclusive leadership to advance health system efforts to become more diverse, equitable and culturally competent

Marcelle WIlson Davis Marcelle Wilson Davis, DSL, will join VCU Health on Nov. 2 as the academic health system’s first director of diversity, equity and inclusion.


CONTACT: Laura Rossacher

University Public Affairs

Phone: 804-827-1730

Email: lrossacher@vcu.edu



RICHMOND, Va. (Oct. 28, 2020) — Marcelle Wilson Davis, DSL, will join VCU Health on Nov. 2 as the academic health system’s first director of diversity, equity and inclusion. An expert in workforce recruitment and implementing inclusive business practices, Davis will lead strategic diversity, equity, inclusion and cultural competence initiatives across the organization.

Davis will provide vision and strategy to guide VCU Health in fulfilling its commitment to create a community that recognizes and embraces diverse backgrounds, identities and lived experiences. In collaboration with health system leadership, Davis will play a critical role in carrying out the health system’s DEI plan, which includes managing an office of diversity, equity and inclusion; conducting gap analyses; developing a DEI governance structure; and implementing ongoing education and training programs for employees.

“Dr. Davis is highly skilled in developing tools that enable organizations to move from the ideation of inclusion to the integration of it,” said Arthur L. Kellerman, M.D., senior vice president for health sciences at VCU and CEO of VCU Health System. “Her leadership and technical mastery of diversity issues will guide VCU Health as we weave diversity, equity and inclusivity into the fabric of our culture to deliver respectful, world-class care to patients, our community and each other.”

Most recently serving as lead, diversity, equity and inclusion, at Booz Allen Hamilton, Davis has 20 years of experience in evaluating business landscapes, analyzing workforce and recruiting metrics, and implementing projects and institutional policies that integrate inclusion.

Among her responsibilities at VCU Health, Davis will incorporate surveys, benchmarking, data and assessment, along with team member feedback, to set and inform goals related to matters of diversity, equity and inclusion in our employee recruitment strategies, leader and team member development, retention and promotion, engagement of team members and care of patients. In partnership with VCU Health System leadership colleagues, Davis will support the advancement of sourcing, recruiting, developing and retaining leaders and team members from diverse and underrepresented groups. She will also facilitate culturally competent interactions with patients, partners and surrounding communities.

Davis has published several articles in academic journals on the topics of global leadership, inclusive leadership, and diversity at the leadership level. In 2019, she published the book Measuring Inclusive Leadership with G.R.A.C.E., a step-by-step guide to recognizing and advancing inclusion in the workplace.

Davis has designed and facilitated MBA courses for Concordia University and University of Southern Maine in areas including cross-cultural management, human resource management, and diversity in organizations; and she has authored micro-lessons for Blue Ocean Brain, a microlearning firm that equips international corporate clients to develop a culture of continuous learning. Davis has given keynote presentations at national and international HR, leadership and diversity and inclusion conferences for more than 10 years.  

Davis received a doctorate in strategic leadership from Regent University in 2018.


About VCU and VCU Health

Virginia Commonwealth University is a major, urban public research university with national and international rankings in sponsored research. Located in downtown Richmond, VCU enrolls more than 30,000 students in 233 degree and certificate programs in the arts, sciences and humanities. Twenty-two of the programs are unique in Virginia, many of them crossing the disciplines of VCU’s 11 schools and three colleges. The VCU Health brand represents the VCU health sciences academic programs, the VCU Massey Cancer Center and the VCU Health System, which comprises VCU Medical Center (the only academic medical center in the region), Community Memorial Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU, and MCV Physicians. The clinical enterprise includes a collaboration with Sheltering Arms Institute for physical rehabilitation services. For more, please visit www.vcu.edu and vcuhealth.org.