Melissa Miller Joins Oak Knoll School as Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice
Melissa Miller has joined Oak Knoll School of the Holy Child as Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice (DEIJ). Miller brings steep experience in DEIJ, admissions, special events, and donor relations from Newark Academy where she most recently served as the school’s Assistant Director of Admissions.
“I am excited to join the wonderful Oak Knoll School community in this role that genuinely aligns with my passions,” said Miller. “I look forward to advancing strategies and initiatives that ensure OKS meets its commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and justice as articulated in its mission. Most of all, I am eager to start building genuine relationships and collaborating with all of the amazing members of this welcoming community.”
As Oak Knoll’s Director of DEIJ, which is an expanded role from the school’s existing Diversity Coordinator position, Miller plans to work closely with all members of the Oak Knoll School community, analyzing existing strategies, initiatives and suggestions from the entire school.
“A lot of fruitful conversation and initiatives came out of 2020,” said Miller. “As I step into the role, I see myself taking the time to build relationships while having more in-depth conversations with individuals on campus. I’ll be supporting the students with their celebratory diversity programming, and diversity clubs and affinity groups, and the faculty and staff with professional development opportunities to continually work toward inclusive classrooms and spaces. I’ll also be engaging and working with parents while staying connected with alums to ensure that all community constituents are part of this dialogue. This work is continuous and it’s about taking a very thoughtful approach and strategy of how we will implement things over the next few years.”
While at Newark Academy, Miller was the Assistant Director of Admissions, an Equity and Inclusion Team Advisor, and Associate Director of Donor Relations and Special Events. Prior to Newark Academy, Miller was the Director of Annual Giving at the Whitby School in Greenwich, CT. No stranger to Catholic education, Miller is a graduate of an all-girls’ Catholic high school and previously worked at the Archdiocese of New York. She earned her master’s degree in nonprofit management from Columbia University, her bachelor’s degree in history from Wesleyan University, and earned a certificate in Diversity and Inclusion for Human Resources from Cornell University.
“We are thrilled that Melissa has joined our administrative staff to continue to cultivate our work with the school community on important and timely diversity, equity, inclusion, and justice issues,” said Oak Knoll’s Head of School, Jennifer G. Landis. “We are confident that her experience and dedication to these initiatives will advance our collective goal as a Holy Child school to being a community that creates a learning climate based on trust and reverence for the dignity and uniqueness of each person.”
Miller is a founding member of Level, a multiracial network of women taking action for racial equity, and a consultant and facilitator for Hyphens and Spaces, a DEI company for organizations dedicated to furthering social causes. She also served as a leadership coach at Braven‘s Rutgers University site, empowering college students from underrepresented backgrounds on their path to college graduation and strong first jobs.