Leadership Statement

Observing Juneteenth, 5-3-22

Dear Colleagues,

As shared yesterday, Juneteenth is now a recognized state holiday in Colorado and one supported by the University of Colorado systemwide. We recognize this action as another step forward for our campus, our state and our university as a whole, as we work toward making a meaningful impact on our equity and inclusion efforts.

Juneteenth, or June 19, commemorates the day in 1865 when enslaved people in Galveston, Texas, received word of their freedom after the Civil War had ended. This year’s holiday marks 157 years since that day – also called Freedom Day or Emancipation Day – and its recognition is one important way to consider the truths of our past as we work toward a more just and equitable future. 

For the current fiscal year ending June 30, 2022, eligible faculty and staff will have an additional holiday to use as a paid personal day of observance, which may be used in observance of Juneteenth or on another day of your choosing. You may use this day with your supervisor’s approval any time before December 31, 2022, and details are below. Given the close proximity to Juneteenth this year, we will determine how best to implement this holiday going forward and share more information in the coming months.

At the CU Anschutz Medical Campus, we are committed to fostering an inclusive and supportive environment in which all members of our community are respected and celebrated. Indeed, our campus is enriched when we shine a light on the diverse backgrounds, experiences and perspectives of one another and those we serve. 

Next month, our Office of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Community Engagement will host a celebration and discussion of Juneteenth open to all. More details will come soon, and we encourage you to attend. 

Let us take the Juneteenth holiday as an opportunity to learn, serve and reflect. It is by deepening our understanding of one another that we keep #CUAnschutzTogether and moving forward.


Don Elliman

Regina Richards
Vice Chancellor of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Community Engagement

Carolyn Brownawell
Associate Vice Chancellor and Chief Human Resources Officer

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