Dr. Melissa Horne Joins OVC as Advisor of Organizational Culture


March 22, 2023

Dr. Melissa Horne recently joined the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) in the new role of Advisor of Organizational Culture.  

Dr. Melissa Horne

In this new role at the college, Horne will bring her extensive expertise in designing and delivering, anti-racism, anti-oppression, and EDI training to help ensure OVC has the tools necessary to make the college a welcoming, inclusive, and rewarding environment for everyone who works and studies here. She will also support the college in implementing initiatives aimed at fostering well-being for the OVC community.  

OVC identified the need to create a leadership position dedicated to EDI and organizational culture as part of the college’s equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) journey, which included the engagement of Canadian consulting firm HRx to assist OVC in designing and administering a self-study into the impact of EDI related issues on its community of students, faculty, staff and alumni. (Read more at Envisioning A More Equitable Future For Veterinary Medicine And Care.)  

“OVC has a unique opportunity in higher education to foster diversity and inclusion in the veterinary profession and the broader health sciences community,” says Dr. Shayan Sharif, OVC Acting dean. “Melissa brings a strong skillset for developing and delivering programming and a passion for social justice. We are delighted to welcome her to the college and look forward to working closely with her to advance this important area.” 

Working in partnership with OVC’s leadership team and the University of Guelph’s Office of Diversity and Human Rights, Horne will develop programs and processes to ensure the continuous enhancement of OVC’s organizational culture.  

She will lead key groups in crystallizing the college’s EDI strategy and support the college in ensuring organizational initiatives are coordinated, tracked, and reported back to the community and other partners.  

She also will work with the college’s Well-Being Committee to incorporate recommendations from a recent OVC community-wide survey into the larger organizational culture strategy and advance initiatives that support the mental health and well-being of OVC’s students, faculty and staff. 

“I’m excited to be joining OVC at this important time in the college’s journey towards creating a more inclusive and equitable organizational culture. OVC already has many people committed to working on EDI and strengthening our culture of well-being, and I look forward to building on this foundation and the possibilities ahead,” says Horne.  

Horne is a highly qualified organizational leader and passionate advocate for social justice and efforts to advance EDI. In her previous role as Director of Strategic Partnerships and Growth with Dialectic, an inclusive workplace learning company, she helped organizations apply science-backed methods to create inclusive practices and achieve their EDIs.  

Horne holds a PhD in Modern U.S. and African American History from Rutgers University and has worked previously in an academic environment as an alumni officer at the University of Waterloo.  

She brings her lived and practical experience with EDI-related issues to the role and is also the former host of the Just One Q podcast, which spotlights EDI practitioners with cutting-edge ideas for driving cultural and behavioural change. 

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