Fargo's Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion addresses criticisms and shares insights on future of department

Courtesy: City of Fargo
Courtesy: City of Fargo

(Fargo, ND) -- Fargo's Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion is speaking on his plans moving forward, how he intends to grow the one of the newest city departments, and also addressing criticism from prominent members of the community.

Dr. Terry Hogan is Fargo's Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Department. He is beginning to move forward with several plans following the release of a report detailing an environmental scan of the city and its government, several meetings with community members and stakeholders, and describing the creation of a strategic plan for the city. Dr. Hogan is facing criticism from Former Fargo City Commissioner Tony Gherig, who says the report given by the director had a "lack of action or attention to detail". Dr. Hogan says the criticisms are well taken, and that future presentation will include additional information for the commissioners to consider. 

"It came up as of today, 'Well you don't have stats for this, well you don't have stats for that.' Well, no I don't, "said Dr. Hogan, "[That's] because number one it was just me, number two I just started this position, and number three - the main goals and objectives is that I wanted to meet the people... Now I'm going through the second phase of what I'm choosing to do. We are going to produce a lot of that."

In addition, more direct goals and actions are looking to be established by the director, including starting a Steering Committee to be "the eyes and the ears of what goes on internally". Dr. Hogan says the committee will be used to build a strategic plan based moving forward, and will be able to construct a plan for future directors of the department for the decades to come. However, one of the things Dr. Hogan says would help him the most is a working budget and additional staffing beyond the two the department has - which includes himself. These are in addition to the plans looking to be built with the next few years in mind.

"In 2023 what I am hoping to do is to establish a buy-in from the mayor. I want the mayor to be intentional about making Diversity, Equity and Inclusion a priority [...] "said Dr. Hogan, "I want to have more town halls and more things that people can come out and see what government does."

WDAY Radio spoke to Dr. Hogan as a part of our Fargo Featured series. You can learn more about the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion department by clicking here

Original Air Date: 
Thursday, March 23, 2023