WT Diversity Officer Wins National Award


CANYON, Texas — West Texas A&M University’s chief diversity and inclusion officer is the recipient of a prestigious national award from the Not Alone Foundation.

Angela Allen, who has headed WT’s diversity efforts since 2014, was presented the Atlanta-based foundation’s Diamond Awards’ Excellence in Education Leadership, Diversity | Equity | Inclusion, Humanitarian & Community Engagement for 2023.

She and other winners were honored Jan. 21 at a gala in Atlanta.

“I was honored when I learned that I was going to receive the Diamond Award for my work in diversity, equity and inclusion, but it wasn’t until I arrived that I realized the magnitude of the award,” Allen said. “It was such a humbling experience to meet so many people from higher education, corporate, military and the medical field who have one powerful goal—to ensure fair, equitable treatment to those who have been discriminated against or underrepresented.

“Now, more than ever, I realize the importance of making sure our students graduate and enter the workforce with a clear understanding of the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion,” Allen said.

The Diamond Awards is a program designed to honor faces and images of excellence in the entertainment, corporate and creative industries for their professional accomplishments and contributions to our society on a local, state or international level, according to its website.

“It is in the spirit of excellence that we endeavor to pay tribute to our honorees for their continued professional and personal contributions to this great world in which we live,” said Mark Dodd, executive chairman and CEO of the Not Alone Foundation.

The Not Alone Foundation is a non-profit organization based in Atlanta and dedicated to providing financial assistance and educational and medical resources for chronic kidney disease or end-stage kidney disease patients and their families. The foundation educates, inspires and uplifts, working determinedly to confront and conquer this global epidemic. In addition to the integration of four core programs, it supports interconnected health initiatives such as diabetes and high blood pressure awareness, as well as cancer prevention and integrative treatment.

Allen, an Amarillo native, works with each of the University’s colleges and schools, as well as departments, groups and offices, to promote and increase diversity and inclusion across campus. Her work also supports the recruitment and retention of under-served and underrepresented students, as well as helping build a diverse faculty and staff. She also collaborates with students and student organizations to create diversity initiatives on campus.

“We are proud of Angela’s dedicated efforts to serve WT and the community,” said WT President Walter V. Wendler. “She works diligently to ensure that all our students find a home here while pursuing their academic studies.”

She was instrumental in the establishment of the Nathaniel and Helen Neal Multicultural Suite in WT’s Jack B. Kelley Student Center. The suite was named for a former WT professor and his wife, the first Black graduate of WT.

Allen was selected as a facilitator the National Association of System Heads in a Texas A&M University System strategic initiative aimed to ensure equity to achieve student success. She has been awarded the Excellence in Service to Students Award by the WT chapter of Sigma Alpha Phi, the national society of leadership and success.

In 2020, Allen was awarded the Chancellor’s Medallion from the Texas A&M University System for her commitment and dedication to diversity, equity and inclusion.

Allen is involved in state, national and international diversity and inclusion efforts.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing at Texas Tech University and a master’s degree in communication from WT. She currently is working on a doctoral degree in college leadership at Colorado State University.

A commitment to being reflective and responsive to the diverse needs of its community is a key principle of the University’s long-range plan, WT 125: From the Panhandle to the World.

That plan is fueled by the historic, $125 million One West comprehensive fundraising campaign. To date, the five-year campaign — which publicly launched in September 2021 — has raised more than $115 million.