A nationally recognized university educator, author, and thought leader on civil rights and implementing humanizing leadership strategies, Dr. Lomax (she/her) understands the unique duty of executives to advance justice, belonging, and inclusivity as essential excellence for their institutions and organizations.
Dr. Lomax is the inaugural Vice President for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Chief Diversity Officer, and Professor of Communication at her undergraduate alma mater, University of the Pacific (Pacific). Prior to joining Pacific, she was the inaugural vice provost and senior diversity officer (2011-2021) and associate vice president and dean of students (2008-2011) at University of San Francisco (USF). While serving as USF Dean of Students, she co-founded with student activists the Gender and Sexuality Student Resource Center.
A sought after public speaker and consultant for preparing the next generation of corporate, government, and non-profit DEI leaders for the challenge and opportunity ahead, she's taught hundreds of graduate business and education students as a leadership and diversity studies faculty in the USF School of Education, USF School of Management, and USF School of Nursing and Health Professions for fourteen years. From Pacific, she's guiding students and professionals across different industries in Sacramento, Stockton, San Francisco and the nation on how to become equity-minded leaders. Dr. Lomax is an affiliate faculty with the Race and Equity Center at University of Southern California where she works with a team of educators to help middle and senior level college administrators such as deans, vice presidents and presidents/ chancellors to become anti-racist leaders for their institutions.
Re-appointed twice by San Francisco Mayor London Breed, Dr. Lomax serves as Commissioner and immediate past President of the San Francisco Public Library Commission stewarding $180M budget for a system of 28 city libraries. Through her leadership, the San Francisco Public Library won the coveted National Public Library of the Year in 2018. She is a trustee and immediate past chair for the National Urban Libraries Council, Washington, D.C, and board member for the Ignatian Solidarity Network and the San Francisco Interfaith Council. A past dean of student affairs at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, Mary is the Founder and Principal of The DEI Leadership Group, a diversity solutions and crisis management firm based in San Francisco.
Dr. Lomax received the Most Influential Woman award by the San Francisco Business Times in 2017 and won the 2018 Human Rights award by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the 2015 San Francisco Human Rights Commission Hero Award. Dr. Lomax is the Founder of the Latinas in Leadership Forum, an annual empowerment and leadership conference for emerging Chicanx-Latinx leaders based in San Francisco.
She received a doctorate in organizational behavior and leadership from Pepperdine’s Graduate School of Education and Psychology; a master’s degree in cross cultural counseling and social justice education from San Diego State University, and a bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of the Pacific. During the Great Migration, her parents journeyed from Jim Crow Arkansas and Texas to the south side of multiethnic Stockton, California where she was born and reared. As a descendent of formerly enslaved ancestors, her equity work and justice practice is grounded in empathy for the oppressed and cultural humility for the privileged.