SUNY’s Carlos N. Medina Earns National “Diversity Visionary Award”

September 16, 2014

SUNY System & Campuses at Downstate, Oneonta, Buffalo State Honored for Leadership


Albany – State University of New York Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher today announced that Carlos N. Medina, the system’s chief diversity officer and senior associate vice chancellor for diversity, equity, and inclusion, has earned the 2014 Diversity Visionary Award from INSIGHT Into Diversity Magazine. Kevin Antoine, diversity officer at SUNY Downstate Medical Center, also received the award, which is the only individual honor of its kind, nationally.

Additionally, the magazine honored SUNY System Administration and three campuses—SUNY Downstate, SUNY Oneonta, and SUNY Buffalo State—with the prestigious 2014 HEED Award, which recognizes an outstanding commitment to diversity and inclusion. SUNY System also received the award in 2012 and 2013.

“It is essential that SUNY reflect the diversity of the great state and nation we serve, and Carlos Medina is an exemplary leader who has consistently ensured our success toward this important goal,” said SUNY Board of Trustees Chairman H. Carl McCall. “Congratulations to Carlos as well as the leadership and staff at Downstate, Oneonta, and SUNY Buffalo State on this much-deserved national recognition.”

“Enhancing our diversity—among students, faculty, courses, and programs—is at the core of all we do at SUNY, and behind each of our successes is Carlos Medina’s leadership,” said Chancellor Zimpher. “We are proud to see him honored for the third consecutive year by INSIGHT Into Diversity, and to see three of our campuses recognized for their commitment and leadership as well.”

Medina is the first chief diversity officer at SUNY and one of only a handful to hold the position within higher education systems, nationally. In April, he was named as chair of a new SUNY Task Force on Diversity charged with identifying new ways in which the system’s diversity can be increased to better reflect and be aligned with that New York State. 

“I’m so proud to be the recipient of such recognition, but it’s important to mention that I share this honor with my highly dedicated staff across SUNY,” said Medina. “We work as a collective to do the highest quality work on behalf of The State University of New York, and our campuses at Downstate, Oneonta, and Buffalo State are among the best of the best. Congratulations to the diversity and inclusion faculty and staff across SUNY who have made these honors possible.”

"SUNY Downstate Medical Center is proud of its standing as one of the most diverse academic health centers in the nation," said John F. Williams, Jr., president of SUNY Downstate. "We are delighted that our campus has received the 2014 HEED Award, and that our assistant vice president for diversity and inclusion, Kevin Antoine, has been recognized with the 2014 Diversity Visionary Award.”

"We are honored that INSIGHT Into Diversity has selected SUNY Oneonta to receive this recognition,” said SUNY Oneonta President Nancy Kleniewski. “The HEED Award acknowledges our sustained efforts toward achieving inclusive excellence."

“We are pleased but not surprised to learn that Buffalo State again was named a recipient of the Diversity Award,” said Karen A. Clinton Jones, Buffalo State’s chief diversity officer. “We make it a priority to recruit a diverse group of students—socioeconomically, racially, and culturally. And once they are here, we offer numerous programs to help students from a variety of backgrounds thrive academically and socially on our campus.”

About INSIGHT Into Diversity
INSIGHT Into Diversity, celebrating its 40th year in 2014, is the largest and oldest diversity publication in higher education today. Known for its annual Higher Education Excellence in Diversity (HEED) Award, this is the only award recognizing colleges and universities for outstanding diversity and inclusion efforts across campuses. Current, archived, and digital issues of INSIGHT Into Diversity magazine are available online at

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York 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 2023, 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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