Jabbar R. Bennett, PhD

Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer
Office for Institutional Diversity and Inclusion
Michigan State University

Professor of Medicine
College of Human Medicine
Michigan State University

Dr. Bennett serves as Michigan State University’s (MSU) vice president and chief diversity officer where he reports directly to the president and is a member of the executive leadership team. In this role, he partners with other senior leaders, deans, faculty, staff, students and alumni to advance the institution’s diversity, equity and inclusion strategic priorities. Dr. Bennett is also a professor of medicine in the College of Human Medicine at MSU.

Prior to joining MSU, Dr. Bennett served as the inaugural associate provost for diversity and inclusion, and chief diversity officer at Northwestern University. Previously, he worked as associate dean of the Graduate School, and associate dean for diversity in the Division of Biology and Medicine at Brown University. In addition, Dr. Bennett held administrative appointments at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School, and United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley. He has also served on the faculty at Harvard, Brown and Northwestern.

Dr. Bennett received a BS in biology and minor in Spanish from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University and earned a PhD in biomedical sciences from Meharry Medical College. Dr. Bennett completed postdoctoral research training in the Department of Pathology at Harvard Medical School and is an alumnus of the Harvard University Administrative Fellows Program, and Massachusetts Education Policy Fellowship Program. 

Currently, Dr. Bennett serves as Chair of the Board of Trustees at the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics and is a past recipient of the Virginia Wilson Outstanding Alumni Volunteer Award. In addition, he has received outstanding alumni recognition from his undergraduate and graduate alma maters, and in 2020, Dr. Bennett was named among, “Inspiring Black Scientists in America” by Cell Mentor, an online resource from scientific journal publisher Cell Press and Cell Signaling Technology.

He is a member of various organizations that work to diversify the biomedical sciences and health professions workforces including the National Medical Association, and the Student National Medical Association where he is a Life Member and previously served as a Professional Board Member.