University of Oklahoma of Oklahoma President David L. Boren today announced that OU alumnus and Booker T. Washington graduate Jabar Shumate of Tulsa has been named OU’s Vice President for the University Community. While attending OU, Shumate served as student body President.
Shumate’s appointment is subject to approval by the OU Board of Regents. As a former legislator, he will be compensated by non-appropriated private funds. His salary will be commensurate with other university-wide vice presidents. He will serve all three OU campuses: Norman, Oklahoma City and Tulsa.
“Jabar Shumate will bring tremendous energy, ability and experience to this newly created position,” Boren said. “He knows the University Community extremely well from his time as student body President and from his continued involvement with the community.
“I have complete trust and confidence in him,” Boren said. “This trust will enable us to work closely with each other as we seek to make our country more inclusive. He will report directly to me, and his office will be located in Evans Hall, where I have my office. I’m extremely pleased that he’s agreed to accept the position.”
The Vice President for the University Community will have oversight over all diversity programs within the University, including admissions. The Vice President will also be kept completely informed by the Office of Student Affairs of all activities aimed at making campus life more inclusive. The Vice President will work directly with the President and with the deans to broaden the pool of applicants for faculty and staff positions.
“Jabar Shumate has been a University of Oklahoma student leader, an OU employee, a state legislative leader, and a civil rights leader,” said George Henderson, Sylvan N. Goldman Professor Emeritus, David Ross Boyd Professor Emeritus and Regents' Professor Emeritus of Human Relations, Education and Sociology. “In each of those roles, he has been a successful, thoughtful and creative advocate for social justice. Therefore, he is uniquely qualified to help OU administrators and supervisors carry out their mandated responsibilities to recruit, retain and develop students, faculty and staff and not discriminate against them on the basis of their race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, genetic information, sex, age, religion, disability, political beliefs, or status as a veteran.”
Shumate served four terms in the Oklahoma House of Representatives before being elected to the state Senate on Nov. 6, 2012. He held leadership positions in the Oklahoma legislative black caucus. He also serves as a member of the board of trustees for the National Urban League.
Upon graduation from OU and prior to his career in public service, he served as Press Secretary to the OU President.
Shumate, who has a passion for improving education, serves on the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence Board of Directors. He earned a bachelor’s degree in public affairs and administration and a master’s degree in human relations, both from OU.