Adriel A. Hilton, Ph.D.


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Adriel A. Hilton is an assistant professor & director of the Higher Education Student Affairs (M.Ed.) graduate program at Western Carolina University.  He previously served as the inaugural assistant vice president for inclusion initiatives at Grand Valley State University (GVSU).  His responsibilities included consulting, advising, and providing support and informational resources on the subjects of diversity and inclusion to all levels of administration, faculty and staff.  Additionally, he acted as a liaison to GVSU’s Office of Multicultural Affairs, Women’s Center, and the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Resource Center.

Dr. Hilton honed his expertise in higher education administration and teaching in his previous position at Upper Iowa University (UIU), where he served as executive assistant to the President and assistant secretary to the Board of Trustees & the first ever chief diversity officer at the University.  He was also an adjunct faculty member at both UIU and the University of Northern Iowa during this period.

Following completion of his doctoral work, Dr. Hilton served as the initial public policy fellow at the Greater Baltimore Committee (GBC).  The GBC serves as the leading visionary, resourceful and action-oriented group of private-sector leaders in the Baltimore region.  Hilton worked closely with policy advisors at the GBC to research, develop, and advocate a public policy agenda related to the organization’s work on issues including economic growth, commercial revitalization, regional transportation, education and workforce preparedness, public safety, and access to health care.

Dr. Hilton’s distinguished career includes many honors and awards, notably, the 2015 Sadie M. Yancey Professional Service Award by the National Association of Student Affairs Professionals; the 2015 Outstanding Professional Contribution & Distinguished Scholar Award by the North Carolina College Personnel Association; and the 2013 Michael A. Powell, Esq. Service Award by the National Black Graduate Student Association.