About the Initiative

The Women & Gender Collaborative connects and promotes efforts that support the University’s mission to improve campus culture and climate around gender and make Colorado State University the best place for women to work and learn.




The Women & Gender Collaborative was developed with these principles in mind:

  • A single effort will not be sufficient or effective.
    Changing campus culture and climate depends on, and must include, participation and effort from diverse groups with diverse interests that address a wide range of issues.
  • To effectively address a problem it must first be adequately understood.
    This requires building a foundation of education and continued learning for the entire campus community through critical reflection, listening, and open dialogue.
  • There are existing groups on campus that have been committed to doing work around women and gender.
    It should be a priority to bring them together and centrally promote their activities as part of a larger, more comprehensive campus-wide effort.
  • There may be interested individuals who want to get involved but don’t know how.
    They are a crucial audience to engage and empower so everyone can effectively contribute to making positive changes at CSU.
  • Culture change requires participation from and engagement with multiple audiences.
    This includes those who are not always initially interested in or adequately informed about how gender shapes our everyday experiences. These groups must also be engaged and equipped with the necessary tools to contribute to creating an inclusive and equitable campus culture.


History of the Initiative

During the 2012 Fall Address, President Tony Frank stated his charge to make Colorado State University the best place for women to work and learn.


President Frank states charge to make Colorado State University the best place for women to work and learn.

Amy Parsons, former Vice President for University Operations, creates the Ripple Effect, the first iteration of the President’s Women and Gender Initiative.

Parsons transitions to role as Executive Vice Chancellor of the Colorado State University System. The President’s Women and Gender Initiative moves to the President’s Office and Dr. Cori Wong assumes leadership as Director. President Frank’s 2015 Fall Address calls to re-envision, re-imagine, and re-invent CSU with a renewed sense of priority and commitment.

The Women & Gender Collaborative launches as the next evolution of the President’s Women and Gender Initiative.

During the 2012 Fall Address, President Tony Frank stated his charge to make Colorado State University the best place for women to work and learn. Under the leadership of Amy Parsons, former Vice-President of University Operations, the Ripple Effect was created.

In the summer of 2015, as Parsons transitioned to her current role as Executive Vice Chancellor of the Colorado State University System, Dr. Cori Wong assumed leadership as Director of the Women and Gender Initiative, and Frank demonstrated continued institutional support for his charge by moving the initiative into the President’s Office.

While keeping with the original mission to make CSU the best place for women to work and learn, the initiative is also now informed by Dr. Frank’s call in his 2015 Fall Address to re-envision, re-imagine, and re-invent CSU with a renewed sense of priority and commitment.

In this vein, the initiative was re-launched in Spring 2016 as the Women & Gender Collaborative with an emphasis on education and engagement.

Read this SOURCE story about the Collaborative's launch here. 

The Collaborative’s Staff

Cori Wong, PhD

Special Assistant to the President of Colorado State University
Director of the Women and Gender Collaborative
Assistant Professor in the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research

Dr. Wong earned a dual-title Ph.D. in Philosophy and Women’s Studies from the Pennsylvania State University after graduating summa cum laude with a B.A. in Philosophy from Colorado State University. With a passion for teaching, learning, and approaching education as a practice of freedom, Dr. Wong empowers others to think through everyday life experiences in ways that lend to personal transformation and greater social justice. Committed to engaging diverse audiences on issues of gender, race, class, sexuality, inequity, injustice, and political resistance, Dr. Wong strives to emphasize how critical reflection and genuine dialogue can be as fun and exciting as they are important and challenging.

In addition to supporting campus-wide research, outreach, and advocacy efforts related to women and gender, Dr. Wong teaches Women’s Studies courses on contemporary feminist theory and feminist friendship.

Contact: Cori.Wong@Colostate.edu; (970)491-3331

Katie Esquivel
Katie works in the Office of the President and provides high-level administrative support to various presidential efforts and initiatives.

Advisory Board

Sue James
Chair – The President’s Commission on Women & Gender Equity
Professor/Head – Mechanical Engineering

Ellen Fisher
Chair – The Standing Committee on the Status of Women Faculty
Professor– Department of Chemistry
Senior Faculty Advisor for Research at CSU

Mary Ontiveros
Vice President for Diversity

Monica Rivera
Director – Women and Gender Advocacy Center

Caridad Souza
Director/Assistant Professor – Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research

Dora Frias
Director – Pride Resource Center



Diana Prieto
Executive Director of Human Resources and Equal Opportunity

Blanche Hughes
Vice President for Student Affairs

Lynn Johnson
Vice President for University Operations

Jodie Hanzlik
Dean for Graduate Studies

Jannine Mohr
Senior Associate General Counsel

Mission & Charge

The Women & Gender Collaborative shares the University’s mission to improve the campus culture and climate around gender and make CSU the best place for women to work and learn.



To promote a campus culture and climate at Colorado State University that fosters productive and supportive relationships and interactions among people. Such an environment is one in which all people are welcomed, valued, and affirmed; where one is safe to embody one’s gender identity and gender expression; where all people are freed from inequities, limitations, and restrictions associated with culturally-defined gender roles; and in which all members of the campus community feel empowered and supported by the institution and University community in pursuing their professional and academic aspirations.

The Women & Gender Collaborative's Charge

  • The Collaborative is charged by the University President to heighten the level of critical understanding and dialogue around women and gender-related issues that impact campus climate and culture, as well as inform the campus community about various efforts across the university and encourage engagement on behalf of all community members.
  • The Collaborative will help inform and promote the work of various campus entities that focus on improving campus culture and climate for all faculty, staff, and students, including (but not limited to) the President’s Commission on Women and Gender Equity, the Standing Committee on the Status of Women Faculty, the Women and Gender Advocacy Center, the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research, and the Office of the Vice President for Diversity.
  • The Collaborative will serve as a campus resource by developing opportunities for increased education around and engagement with women and gender-related issues; facilitating dialogues; convening relevant stakeholders; promoting related programs, workshops, and events; building, supporting, and maintaining collaborative relationships on campus and in the local community; coordinating opportunities for professional and leadership development among women; and increasing the two-way communication between and among diverse constituencies, including the President, university administration, faculty, staff, students, and local community members.
  • The President will receive regular communication from the Collaborative about areas of progress, areas of concern, and recommendations and program ideas for how to continue to improve the campus culture and climate.
  • The Collaborative may identify, recommend, and assist in the development of high-impact initiatives and activities to the President and the Provost that may improve the campus culture and climate with respect to gender and its intersections with other identity categories (such as race, sexuality, and class).