Rivers Announces New Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Head of School Ned Parsons announced today that Jenny Jun-lei Kravitz has been selected as the new director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at The Rivers School, effective July 1, 2023.
Jenny will lead the office of DEI as a member of the senior administrative team, reporting to incoming Head of School Ryan Dahlem, who was actively engaged in this important hire. She will work collaboratively with all departments and constituents to advance DEI initiatives across the institution and support the school’s collective efforts to deepen its culture of inclusion and belonging. The overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from the professional community and students who met Jenny during the search process speaks to the strength of her candidacy and readiness to lead this work at Rivers.
Jenny comes to Rivers from The Pike School, where she serves as director of equity and justice, leading comprehensive DEIJ initiatives and programming across the institution. She earned a BA in biology from Tufts University and an MA degree in biological sciences from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, and she taught science for many years in the Massachusetts public school system. She completed a master’s degree in diversity and inclusion leadership at Tufts University, where her graduate research focused on Indigenous support and institutional decolonization in higher education.
Through teaching, she discovered that forging authentic connections with students and their families was the most important aspect of successful learning and development. She said her approach emphasizes supporting students to become “better thinkers, better problem solvers, better empathizers, better advocates, and ultimately better at knowing who they are inside and how they wish to share that with the world.”
For the past 20 years, Jenny has been actively working toward equity and justice in the educational arena in both K-12 and higher-education organizations. Among her notable accomplishments, she has partnered with both the Anti-Defamation League and the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s Safe Schools Initiative. She has also been appointed to DEI advisory roles for Tufts University, the Town of Westford, and the Town of Andover, where she currently serves on the DEI Commission, leading a working group on diversity in hiring. Jenny lives in Westford with her partner, Paul, and their two children. As a multiracial family, they embrace and celebrate a mixed heritage of Cantonese, Jewish, and German cultures.