Leadership

In collaboration with Vice Chancellor Todd Adams, Student Affairs & Inclusive Excellence's divisional leadership team provides administrative, strategic and organizational leadership as we work to support our students throughout their journey at DU.

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Todd Adams

Vice Chancellor, Student Affairs

Todd comes to DU from Northwestern University, where he served as associate vice president and dean of students since 2013. Prior to that Todd was at Duke University where he held numerous leadership roles in student affairs. He is a highly respected and collaborative leader. He has built successful student-centered operations at two of the finest institutions in the country, and his vision and compassion for students is widely recognized and respected across the student affairs field. In his former role at Northwestern, Todd oversaw areas that provide resources, services and support significant to the student experience, including the first-year experience, new student and family programs, career advancement, off-campus life, student assistance and support services, and student conduct. He has been responsible for crisis response and emergency preparedness across the Division of Student Affairs, and collaborated frequently with academic, auxiliary, and other institutional and community partners to serve students.  

Todd provided leadership in the crafting and implementation of a university-wide sexual misconduct policy and assisted in the launch of Northwestern’s Office of Equity. He transitioned student disability services to AccessibleNU, with staff dedicated to assistive technology and promoting concepts of universal design for learning, and increased funding to support undergraduate, graduate and professional students who experience health-related and other emergency needs. Todd served on Northwestern’s behavioral consultation team and the undergraduate council in the provost’s office, and he taught in the Master of Science in Higher Education program at Northwestern’s School of Education and Social Policy.  

Todd is a longtime member of the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators, where he has served as the national co-chair of the Fraternity and Sorority Knowledge Community. He also assisted in creating the Highly Selective Institution Network for the National Orientation Directors Association and served as its inaugural co-chair. In addition to his administrative roles, at Duke University Todd also taught in the Program in Education and was honored with the Excellence in Advising award by Trinity College of Arts and Sciences. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln and holds a doctorate from the Peabody School at Vanderbilt University. 

Shana Alston

Executive Director, Housing & Residential Education 

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Shana serves as the Executive Director of Housing and Residential Education at the University of Denver. In that role, Shana provides strategic leadership for residential education, operations and off-campus housing services. Shana strives to enhance both the student and staff experience while improving housing administrative and operational processes by significantly advancing residential educational experience, enhancing housing technology, growing staff development opportunities, strategic communication, and hiring & recruitment processes. Shana holds a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, and a Master’s of Science degree in Educational Counseling from Monmouth University. She has worked at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, Monmouth University, Philadelphia University (Thomas Jefferson University- East Falls), and Temple University during her professional career.  Shana values professional involvement and is also an active member of ACUHO-I. She currently serves as the Chair Elect of the ACUHO-I Foundation.   

Michael J. LaFarr

Executive Director, Health & Counseling Center

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Dr. Michael LaFarr is the Executive Director of the Health & Counseling Center at the University of Denver. He earned his BA in Education from Johnson State College in 1993, his MA in Higher Education from the University of Denver in 2008, and his PsyD in Clinical Psychology from the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology in 2010. Previously Michael was the Executive Director of Health and Wellness at Brandeis University and was also the former Director of Student Affairs at the Harvard School of Public Health. Michael served in the Peace Corps of the United States, working in Education and Health Promotion in Mali, West Africa. His professional interests include health care disparity & access, health and wellness, college mental health, differences in learning, grief counseling, giftedness, psychodynamic treatment, sexual therapy, non-majority sexual orientation & transgender mental health. 

Niki Latino

Associate Vice Chancellor, Student Affairs & Inclusive Excellence

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Dr. Niki Latino is the Associate Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs & Inclusive Excellence at the University of Denver. She earned her master's and doctoral degrees at DU. Her PhD is in higher education teaching and learning, with specialties in inclusive leadership and inclusive excellence. She has taught at DU, at the graduate and undergraduate levels and serves on graduate student research committees. Her passion is creating inclusive learning environments and equitable access to learning for all students

Mo Lotif

Director of Strategy & Communications

Mo Lotif

Mo Lotif is a higher education professional who is committed to imagining and advancing the ways higher education institutions can evolve to reflect, and respond to, our pluralistic society. He currently serves as the Director of Strategy and Communication for SAIE.  

He has a deep interest in exploring the ways University built environments can be designed and operated to support student, staff, and faculty sense of belonging. Mo previously served as the Owner’s Representative for the University of Denver’s visionary Denver Advantage capital construction projects---the Community Commons and the Dimond Family Residential Village.   

Prior to working at the University of Denver, Mo worked at several highly selective liberal arts colleges advancing systemic changes around diversity, equity, and inclusion practices that enrich the academic, social, and personal well-being of all students within diverse institutional contexts. 

Mo received his B.A. from Williams College and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Real Estate at Daniels College of Business. He is a native son of Detroit, and deeply influenced by the life, work and teachings of James and Grace Lee Boggs, and Louis Kahn. 

Katie Nittman

Executive Assistant, Student Affairs & Inclusive Excellence

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Katie Gutierrez Nittmann (she/her/hers/ella) is originally from Ft. Collins, CO. She earned her B.A. in Sociology and Peace & Justice Studies from Tufts University and returned to Colorado to earn her M.A. in Higher Education from the University of Denver. Immediately prior to joining DU in this role, Katie was an academic advisor at MSU Denver. Prior to that she worked with transfer students at the Community College of Aurora (CCA). Katie has taught college and university success courses at both CCA and MSU Denver for incoming first-year students and has received training in the areas of social justice facilitation and inclusive pedagogy. Katie is passionate about serving underrepresented students through the creation of student-centered places, policies, and practices in every facet of higher education. When not at work, she can be found trying out different restaurants around Denver with her partner or snuggling their chihuahua, Diablo. 

Chris Roby

Assistant Vice Chancellor, Student Engagement & 4D Experience

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Chris joins us most recently after 15 years at Duke University, where he served as the Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs and Executive Director of University Center Activities and Events. Chris is a proven leader in bringing talented staff together in support of the student experience, and in intentionally developing signature community-building spaces with the goal of creating engaged, inclusive spaces for all students to learn, grow, and thrive.  

Chris comes to us with 32 years of experience in Student Affairs, with an extensive portfolio in student activities, strategic planning, facilities and renovation planning, budget management, and extensive work building strong, cohesive teams and engaging diverse students and staff. As Assistant Vice President at Duke, Chris led a comprehensive department including the student involvement and student engagement teams, conference and event services, venue and production management, UCAE’s finance and administration unit, as well as the division’s strategic communications and professional development team. Previous to his time at Duke, Chris led teams at Florida State University, the University of Miami, and Eckerd College, holding roles as union director as well as director of student activities and leadership programs, and as an assistant dean of students.  

Chris also has an extensive facilities management portfolio, having been responsible for Duke’s Campus Center complex, Art Centers, Performance and Theater Venues, and non-residential facilities, and at Florida State, providing oversight for the Oglesby Union Complex as well as the Student Life Building, Student Services Building, and the Flying High Circus (yes, a literal circus—ask him about it sometime).  

When he is not in the office, Chris enjoys collecting and creating art, antiquing, and getting out and exploring new parks and hiking trails with his family. 

Nicholle Zarkower

Assistant Vice Chancellor, Business, Operations and Division Resources  

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A 20+ year veteran in diverse higher education environments, Nicholle is the assistant vice chancellor for business, operations, & division resources (BODR), which provides SAIE’s operational foundation. Her educational background is eclectic: She was an international relations major at Georgetown University, completed a Master’s of Public Health at the University of Michigan, and earned her Ph.D. in communication, with a focus on mass media, persuasion, and politics, from the University of Arizona. Nicholle has served in leadership roles for the Western Association of College and University Business Officers (WACUBO) since 2010. Her passion is conducting the efforts of dedicated, expert professionals working toward a higher purpose.