Chancellor Malatras Congratulates SUNY’s Hispanic Leadership Institute Class of 2022

November 4, 2021

Ten SUNY Faculty and Staff from Six Campuses to Participate in Leadership Skill Development Programs for Emerging Hispanic/Latinx Leaders

Photos and Bios of Each Fellow Available Here

Albany, NY
– State University of New York Chancellor Jim Malatras announced today that 10 faculty and staff from six campuses have been selected as the 2022 class of fellows for SUNY's Hispanic Leadership Institute (HLI). The HLI is charged with developing and supporting the next generation of Hispanic/Latinx leaders across the SUNY system, and has graduated 41 SUNY leaders since its launch in 2017.

This year's class of HLI fellows reflects the depth and breadth of SUNY, and is comprised of faculty and staff from university centers, four-year comprehensive institutions, and a technology college. The fellows are:

  • Christian Alberto, SUNY College of Optometry, Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management
  • Miguel Baique, Binghamton University, Thomas J. Watson College of Engineering and Applied Science, Assistant Dean for Academic Diversity and Inclusive Excellence
  • Dante Cantú, SUNY New Paltz, Executive Director of Academic Advising and Student Success
  • Adriana Conde, SUNY Downstate Health Sciences University, Assistant Vice President, Office of Employee and Labor Relations
  • Giza Lopes, University at Albany, Executive Director of the New York State Youth Justice Institute
  • Tanhena Pacheco Dunn, SUNY New Paltz, Assistant Vice President for Human Resources, Diversity and Inclusion; Chief Diversity Officer/Title IX Coordinator
  • Louis A. Reyes, Jr., SUNY Delhi, Director of the Educational Opportunity Program
  • Carmen A. Serrano, University at Albany, Associate Professor of Spanish Languages, Literatures & Cultures, Latin American, Caribbean & U.S. Latino Studies and Director of Spanish Graduate and Undergraduate Studies
  • Christie Torruella Smith, SUNY Geneseo, Director of Admissions
  • Elizabeth Vásquez, University at Albany, Associate Professor and Chair, Epidemiology & Biostatistics, Latin American, Caribbean & U.S. Latino Studies

Photos and biographies for each fellow are available here.

"At SUNY, we are deeply committed to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion among our students, faculty, and staff. The SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute opens doors for our world class Hispanic and Latinx faculty and staff so that they may advance in higher education and set an empowering example for our students from even greater heights," said Chancellor Malatras. "My thanks to HLI Executive Director and University at Albany President Havidán Rodríguez and HLI Director-in-Residence Claudia Hernandez who continue to amplify Hispanic voices everywhere."

This intensive six-month experience is specifically designed for SUNY leaders of Hispanic descent, and provides an opportunity to focus on higher education leadership skills and competencies needed in today's ever changing academic and administrative environment. Fellows will use personal assessment tools and participate in training sessions and webinars, as well as in conversations with national and state-wide Hispanic leaders. The rigorous professional development program doesn't end there. As a pipeline for professional opportunities across SUNY, HLI ensures alumni are actively engaged through networking and receive ongoing support and mentorship.

SUNY Board of Trustees Vice Chairman Cesar Perales said, "In just a short period of time, the Hispanic Leadership Institute has become the highly sought after executive professional development program for our emerging Hispanic and Latinx staff and faculty, and it is right here at SUNY. It is a springboard for their individual career pursuits, and it has brought together a network of excellent professionals to support one another. Each fellow is selected for what they have accomplished, and their potential to successfully take on new responsibilities across SUNY. And, I can't wait to see what they do next."

SUNY Board Trustee Eunice A. Lewin said, "SUNY, to me, is about creating opportunities—especially for our students, and also for the professional faculty and staff who drive our educational mission each day. The Hispanic Leadership Institute provides just that for our Hispanic/Latinx professionals, and sets them on a course to do great things across this vast system of colleges and universities. My congratulations to these 10 new fellows who will now join the ranks of the HLI."

SUNY Trustee Marcos Crespo said, "The Hispanic Leadership Institute is a model in empowering the next generation of Hispanic/Latinx leaders. For each HLI member, the institute serves as a catalyst for their professional growth, and for SUNY, it ensures that our institutions become more diverse and inclusive at all levels for the benefit of our students. The HLI is a point of pride within SUNY, and it will always have my support. My congratulations to this year's class."

HLI Executive Director and University at Albany President Havidán Rodríguez said, "I could not be more enthusiastic about the Hispanic Leadership Institute's success and progress since its inception—and this new cohort of HLI fellows will only add to those achievements. I am greatly looking forward to working closely with these rising stars from across SUNY as we support their growth and development as emerging leaders."

HLI Director-in-Residence Claudia Hernandez said, "In order to grow the number of Hispanic/Latinx leaders in our universities, we must invest in a collaborative and welcoming environment for those of diverse backgrounds to thrive. The Hispanic Leadership Institute is more than professional development training, it is a support community built by and for emerging leaders with a common heritage. I am proud to be the first HLI Director-in-Residence and I thank SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras and University at Albany President Havidán Rodríguez for their continued support of this transformative program."


The SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute serves as a resource for Hispanic and Latinx leaders in higher education, both in New York State and across the country. Its mission is to foster and support the professional development and retention of current and emerging leaders to create a more diverse university system. For more information about the SUNY Hispanic Leadership Institute, visit

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year, is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, and more than 95 percent of all New Yorkers live within 30 miles of any one of SUNY’s 64 colleges and universities. Across the system, SUNY has four academic health centers, five hospitals, four medical schools, two dental schools, a law school, the country’s oldest school of maritime, the state’s only college of optometry, and manages one US Department of Energy National Laboratory. In total, SUNY serves about 1.4 million students amongst its entire portfolio of credit- and non-credit-bearing courses and programs, continuing education, and community outreach programs. SUNY oversees nearly a quarter of academic research in New York. Research expenditures system-wide are nearly $1.1 billion in fiscal year 2022, including significant contributions from students and faculty. There are more than three million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunities, visit

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