Crystal Williams

Associate Provost for Diversity & Inclusion

As Boston University’s inaugural Associate Provost for Diversity & Inclusion, Crystal Ann Williams provides leadership, vision, management, and strategic direction for initiatives that promote diversity, access, and inclusion across BU’s Charles River and Medical campuses.  She works closely and collaboratively with academic and administrative leaders on efforts to build the inclusive excellence of BU faculty and academic appointees, to nurture a positive campus climate, and to enhance diversity within the pathways through higher education.

Crystal arrived at BU in October 2017 from Bates College, where she’d served since 2013 as Associate Vice President for Strategic Initiatives, Professor of English and as a senior advisor to the President, developing programs and strategies that resulted in increased diversity among the faculty, staff, and students, while enhancing engagement across campus. She was previously a faculty member and the inaugural Dean for Institutional Diversity at Reed College (2000-2013), leading multiple faculty-driven initiatives to create an infrastructure to support diversity and inclusion.

In addition to her leadership roles, Crystal is an award-winning poet, the author of four books, and the recipient of several artistic fellowships, grants, and commissions. She is consistently recognized as a thought leader on diversity in the arts and has helped to lead and convene programs at the state and local levels involving arts, civic, and philanthropic leaders. She holds a B.A. from New York University and an MFA from Cornell University.