Ohio University

Employee Affinity Organizations

What is an Employee Affinity Organization?

Employee Affinity Organizations are formed around a shared identity or common goal to build community among members of non-dominant groups and to foster inclusion and awareness in the broader university. Affinity Organizations play an important role in fostering an inclusive campus environment by fostering inclusion and community through a support network of mentors, allies, and peers and recruiting and retaining members of minority groups and their allies.

Each Employee Affinity Organization determines its own scope and priorities. To receive support and recognition from the University, organizations should be:

  • Open to all Ohio University faculty/staff around the affinity topic or identity
  • Have a clear sense of purpose, including a mission statement that contributes to the larger University’s mission and core values
  • Have a public presence such as a website and email

Employee Affinity Organizations are not part of the formal governance structure (i.e., not a committee), but rather are sites of community engagement and formation. Currently recognized affinity groups are below, with links to their own websites. If you are interested in starting an affinity group, please contact Cat Russell, HR Liaison, at 740-593-0766 or russelc4@ohio.edu.


Council of Employees and Staff of African Descent (COESAD)

COESAD is an informal volunteer group geared towards faculty, staff, and graduate students of African descent at Ohio University. While there is not a formal meeting schedule, COESAD hosts various themed events throughout the year at both lunch and dinner times on various days, to accommodate schedules for all faculty and staff.  Programming covers a wide array of events and typically includes a Welcome Roundup in early fall and end of the year celebration in spring; supporting other campus events such as the BAR (Black Alumni Reunion), MLK Celebration, Women’s Appreciation Dinner hosted by the Women’s Center; and additional community service and engagement opportunities throughout the year.

For more information, email co-chairs, Dr. Jennifaye Brown, at brownj18@ohio.edu, and Tamika Williams, at williat8@ohio.edu.

Latino Caucus

Ohio University's Latino Caucus promotes the equitable participation of Latino/a/x faculty and staff at Ohio University and generally in higher education, provides a network of support for Latino/a/x faculty and staff to assist their professional advancement and success, and supports and encourages Latino/a/x students' access to and success at Ohio University and beyond. All faculty and staff members who support this mission are welcome and invited to join.

For more information, email Michael Rodriguez, at rodrigum@ohio.edu.


Out OHIO is an affinity organization for employees of Ohio University who share our focus of welcoming and engaging LGBTQ+ faculty and staff through a variety of opportunities for social gatherings, professional networking, and inclusive community involvement.

For more information, email OutOHIO@ohio.edu.

The Ohio University Women's Club

The Ohio University Women's Club is a social organization for women who work at Ohio University and the spouses/partners of Ohio University employees. The Women's Club provides a unique support system to members of all ages, sharing a passion for and support of the Ohio University and Athens communities. With interest groups offering monthly wine tastings, lunch uptown, dinner parties, book clubs and movie nights, there is something for everyone.

For more information, email ouwc@ohio.edu.

Facebook page(opens in a new window)

University Interfaith Association

University Interfaith Association (UIA) is an association of clergy and campus ministers from the Athens religious community committed to meeting the religious and spiritual needs of Ohio University students, faculty and staff. Members of UIA provide advice and counsel to the Dean of Students on matters of campus religious activity and student spiritual development. UIA members are eligible to serve as advisors to registered student organizations at Ohio University.

For more information, email current chair, Rev. Evan Young, at younge1@ohio.edu