Our Team

Leadership

Dr. Mary J. Wardell-Ghirarduzzi
Vice Provost and Chief Diversity Officer
Phone: (415) 422-2821 | Email: mjwardell@usfca.edu

Recognized as a 2017 Most Influential Woman by the San Francisco Business Times, Mary Wardell-Ghirarduzzi brings passion for creating more equitable, inclusive and caring campus climate and culture for all. Serving as USF's chief diversity officer (CDO), she is an executive leader skilled at building organizational capacity focused on learning and belonging with over 20 years experience in academic affairs, student life, community engagement, and equity and inclusion. Currently she is the Vice Provost for Diversity and Community Engagement and an adjunct professor of organizations, communication and leadership at the University of San Francisco.

Mary has created strategic new initiatives including: Diversity Scholar & Visiting Professor, Diverse Workforce Initiative, Stakeholder Community Forums (such as Latinas in Leadership), the DiversityTalks series, and diversity intensives (And Still We Rise and Allies in the Academy) for greater intercultural and interpersonal understanding. Appointed by Mayor Edwin Lee to serve as the President of the San Francisco Library Commission stewarding a budget of $124M for a system of 28 libraries, Mary has impacted the futures of thousands of college students as well as hundreds of thousands of residents through access to resources and educational pathways at one of the Bay Areas’ most celebrated anchor institutions. She also serves on the executive boards of the Urban Libraries Council in Washington, D.C, the San Francisco Interfaith Council and Saint Ignatius College Preparatory.  

Prior to her Vice Provost/ CDO role, Mary served as the USF Associate Vice President and Dean of Students leading and supporting campus-wide student services, including behavioral intervention and crisis response; she was the chief student affairs officer at Otis College of Art and Design in Los Angeles, and the Assistant Dean of Students at the California State University, San Marcos.  She was awarded the San Francisco Human Rights Commission's Hero Award for her commitment to social justice and civil rights.  Vice Provost Wardell has a bachelor’s in communication from the University of the Pacific, a masters’ in counseling and social justice education from San Diego State University and a doctorate in education from Pepperdine University.

Ria DasGupta
Diversity and Community Relations Program Manager
Phone: (415) 422-2828 | Email: aadasgupta@usfca.edu

Ria (Ariana) DasGupta moved to the Bay Area from New Jersey in 2014. In 2010, she earned an MA in Women's and Gender Studies from Rutgers University, where her studies focused on women's human rights in the context of neoliberalism. In 2008, she graduated summa cum laude from Douglass College, the women's college of Rutgers University, with a BA in History/Political Science and a minor in Women's and Gender Studies.

Prior to her move to the Bay Area, Ria was an Interim Assistant Dean for Douglass Residential College. In her position, she developed women's leadership, global engagement and wellness programs for the college's undergraduate population. Until 2011, she was a Program Assistant for the Center for Women's Global Leadership, where she had begun as an undergraduate volunteer.

Ria is currently a doctoral student at USF in the department of International and Multicultural Education. In her free time, she dances professionally and runs a contemporary Indian dance company.

Gladys Perez
Program Assistant
Phone: (415) 422-2683 | Email: gaperez5@usfca.edu 

As the daughter of immigrant parents from Oaxaca, Mexico, Gladys A. Perez is a proud Bay Area native, first-generation college graduate, and artist.

After completing her Bachelor’s in Sociology at USF, Gladys joined the administrative staff of the College of Arts & Sciences in 2015 where she helped foster community among faculty and students through supporting Latinx academic programs and events. Since then she has remained heavily involved in the university by serving as the staff advisor for the student club Latinas Unidas, being an active member of the Task Force for Undocumented Students, and providing support as a Process Advocate for the Bias Education and Resource Team (BERT).

A soon to be double-Don, Gladys is completing her MA in International & Multicultural Education in the School of Education where her research interest includes immigration, counter storytelling, and creative writing. She hopes to continue her work in higher education to help students explore their experiences through creative writing in order to create a more inclusive university community. Outside of USF, she pursues creative writing and painting to honor her immigrant and indigenous roots.