Toya M. Cooper, JD
Vice President for Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion
Office: Churchill Hall 120
Prior to arriving at SOU, Cooper served as Marist College’s Director of Equity, Inclusion, and Compliance and Title IX Coordinator in Poughkeepsie, NY. A California attorney and diversity officer, she joined the SOU community in November 2021. Cooper began her career in academe as an admissions counselor and multicultural program coordinator with responsibilities for developing recruitment and retention of underrepresented students in southern and northern California for her undergraduate alma mater, Westmont College in Santa Barbara, CA. After earning her JD from Willamette University College of Law and admission to the California Bar, she returned to Westmont. Over the course of her time at Westmont, Cooper served as the Associate Director for Multicultural Programs, Special Assistant to the President for Legal Affairs, Special Assistant to the Provost for Diversity Initiatives, and College Counsel. She continues to enjoy long-time connections with students she has mentored and colleagues with whom she has partnered over her near 20 year career in higher education.
In addition to providing educational programming for faculty, staff, and students on the intersection of diversity and inclusion and the law in the college and university setting, Cooper has created and administered diversity programming for community organizations, served as Court Appointed Special Advocate for Children in the Santa Barbara County foster care system, and as a tutor in the local area K-12 campuses where she has resided.
Jonathan Chavez Baez, M.A.
Director for Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion
Office: Churchill Hall
Jonathan Chavez Baez was born in Cuautla Morelos, Mexico. He immigrated to the U.S. at the age of 10. He graduated from Phoenix High School, received a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Southern Oregon University and his Master of Arts in Education: Educational Leadership and Policy in Higher Education from Portland State University. For the past 12 years, Jonathan has been working for Southern Oregon University in various capacities. Currently, he is the Assistant Director for Latino/a/x Programs at SOU. In May 2020, the SOU President appointed Jonathan to form the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Leadership Team. Throughout his career, Jonathan has devoted his time working with the Latino/a/x community to increase high school graduation, college enrollment, parent engagement, support to undocumented/DACAmented students, and the creation of numerous programs for underrepresented students. He also has over 18 years of experience working with youth in Southern Oregon. In addition, he is currently the Co-Director of Academia Latina hosted at Southern Oregon University. Jonathan’s passion is the implementation of programs in higher education institutions that can help guide underrepresented students obtain a college education. Also at SOU, Jonathan is now chair of the Committee for Equity & Diversity (CED), Enrollment Management Council, Diversity Scholarship and Strategic Planning Committees. In his free time, he is a member of numerous boards and organizations that include the Oregon Community Foundation’s Latino Partnership Program, the Southern Oregon Latino Scholarship Fund, Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Cultural Connections, Latinx/a/o Interagency Committee, and Listo Core Champions Advisory Council. In March 2017, Jonathan was appointed to the Oregon Commission on Hispanic Affairs (OCHA) by Governor Kate Brown. He is now serving his second term with OCHA.
Patricia Syquia McCarthy, JD
Contracts Administrative Officer/Risk Manager; Staff and Community Liaison, Office for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
Office: Churchill Hall
Patricia received her BA in Classics (Latin) with a minor in Asian American Studies from Mount Holyoke College and her JD from Tulane University with a certificate in Environmental Law. At SOU, she is a member of the Business Affairs Council, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee, Equity Grievance Panel, Incident Response Team, Policy Council and Support Program Assessment Review Committee. In her free time, Patricia is a member of the Helman PTA, Helman Site Council, Ashland School District Facilities Name Review Committee, Siskiyou Mountain Club and the Oregon Filipino American Lawyers Association.