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Judith Brown Clarke Named to Board of Directors of the National Fitness Foundation

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VP for Equity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer Honored for Diversity Efforts, Athletic Accomplishments

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Judith Brown Clarke, Vice President for Equity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer. Photo by John Griffin.

Stony Brook University Vice President for Equity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer Judith Brown Clarke has been appointed to the Board of Directors for the National Fitness Foundation. She will serve from 2022 to 2028. The appointment was announced by Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra. Brown Clarke was also voted in as the chair of the Board for the next two years.

Brown Clarke’s appointment recognizes her exemplary leadership in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion efforts in higher education. Her thought-leadership and collaboration with multiple organizations, including grant funding and research institutions, are among the key attributes she brings to this appointment. Additionally, Brown Clarke also garnered extraordinary achievements as an elite athlete, as she was a four-time NCAA track and field champion and 1984 Olympic Silver Medalist in track and field.

“I cannot think of a better appointment, and know firsthand how lucky the National Fitness Foundation—and any other organization—is to count Judith Brown Clarke among its leadership,” said Stony Brook University President Maurie McInnis. “As Vice President of Diversity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer, Judith Brown Clarke has worked to set actionable goals for a just, equitable, and humane campus community during a critical time.”

“I am absolutely thrilled for the opportunity to leverage my deep passion for education, health, policy and sports/physical activity to make a meaningful difference in the lives and wellness of our nation,” said Brown Clarke.

The National Fitness Foundation was established by Congress in 2010 to collaborate with the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness & Nutrition (President’s Council) and to identify strategic priorities to further the purposes and functions of the President’s Council. The Foundation supports and strengthens the President’s Council’s mission by facilitating investments and partnerships that engage, educate, and empower all Americans to lead healthy, active lives. The Board, in particular, is charged with providing the overall strategic direction related to the Foundation’s vision, mission, program scope, resource allocation, and investment philosophy. It also provides guidance to the Foundation’s Executive Director to execute an operational agenda that achieves the Board’s goals.

Regarding the recent appointment of new National Fitness Board members, “This experienced group of advisors will enable the National Fitness Foundation to take the next step in advancing the health of our nation through fitness and nutrition,” said Xavier Becerra, HHS Secretary. “These leaders will help shape the direction of the Foundation as it strives to further the important mission of the President’s Council in supporting sports, health, and fitness initiatives for young people.”

Brown Clarke reports directly to President McInnis and sits on the university’s senior leadership teams, including the president’s cabinet, University Council, Vice Presidents Council and Campus Climate. She possesses more than 17 years of experience working on senior management teams shaping strategic plans for diversity and establishing infrastructures for inclusive excellence and equity sustainability. This includes determining accountability metrics that facilitate progress and the use of data-driven, evidence-based practices for decision-making.

Brown Clarke is adept at fostering open dialogues on difficult conversations with multiple constituencies by building trust, empowerment and team building. She has a strong portfolio in grant funding, which has been leveraged to increase resources for Stony Brook’s diversity initiatives. This includes her experience as a principal investigator (PI), co-PI, or lead staff researcher on multiple grant projects totaling more than $60 million. Clarke has demonstrated effective collection, analysis, problem solving and predictive analytical processes using benchmarked metrics that directly align with the institution’s goals.

Brown Clarke is currently an American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU) 2022 Millennium Leadership Initiative Fellow, Chair of the Association of American Universities (AAU) CDO Steering Committee, Treasurer for the United State Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), Harvard Advanced Leadership Senior Fellow, and an external advisory committee member for three NSF-funded Science and Technology Centers (STC) – Center for Cellular Construction (CCC), Center for Oldest Ice Exploration (COLDEX) and Bio-Computation Evolution in Action Network (BEACON)

Brown Clarke has also experienced great athletic success — she is a four-time national collegiate champion, 12-time Big Ten Champion, three-time Pan American Games gold medalist, 1984 Olympic Silver Medalist, and 1987 Sports Illustrated Woman of the Year.


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