Janine Jones is Harvard-Westlake’s first Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). In this episode, Janine discusses how DEI became an area of focus and increased professional development at Harvard-Westlake, in addition to the challenges of engaging in this work within a community of diverse opinions and perceptions about DEI. Janine makes special mention of her parents, both educators, as profound influences upon her life and work, in addition to the inspiring impact of HBCU’s and a community organization called the Worthington Alliance of Black Parents.
Rick Commons is amid his seventh year as President and Head of School at Harvard-Westlake. In this inaugural episode of The Supporting Cast, Rick speaks about changes to the upper school schedule and the challenges of recruiting and retaining top faculty in Los Angeles, in addition to his upbringing in Philadelphia and career path in educational leadership. Among the teachers and mentors Rick mentions are a 7th grade teacher named Steve Bonnie and former Harvard-Westlake President Tom Hudnut.