PHOENIX, September 24, 2007 — Charlita Shelton, organizational diversity officer for Apollo Education Group, Inc., the parent company of University of Phoenix, was named "Diversity Champion" at the 2007 Arizona Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) Diversity Leadership Alliance Conference Awards Thursday at the Phoenix Convention Center. Shelton was one of several nominees for the award and one of two finalists.

In her Apollo Education Group role, Shelton is responsible for recommending and instituting hiring processes that continue to make Apollo Education Group a diverse workplace. This includes developing and strengthening programs serving diverse student, faculty and staff populations at 198 campuses and learning centers in 39 states and four countries.

She serves as primary advisor to Apollo Education Group President Brian Mueller in all matters involving diversity. As well, Shelton's efforts ensure that University of Phoenix meets the needs of underrepresented students. She assists with identifying, developing and implementing strategies to help at-risk students succeed and graduate.

"Charlita is protector and promoter of a diverse environment for more than 350,000 students, faculty and employees," Mueller said. "Charlita's efforts and influence at Apollo are both wide and deep, and rooted in the desire to help students while providing a more productive and multicultural workplace for our employees."�

Shelton was instrumental in initiating a new, employee training tool "Inclusion and Diversity at Apollo Education Group," with an overall goal to train 100 percent, or approximately 14,000, staff members within the upcoming year. Her commitment to diversity extends to University of Phoenix campuses worldwide through a program in which Shelton selects employees as "diversity champions," empowering them to train others in tolerance, inclusiveness and diversity awareness.

Shelton's professional experience in higher education spans 17 years. She began her career at University of Phoenix in 1997 as director of academic affairs for the San Diego campus. Before assuming her current role as organizational diversity officer for Apollo Education Group, she held a number of leadership positions within the company including regional director of academic affairs for the Midwest Region and associate vice president for campus academic affairs.

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University of Phoenix is constantly innovating to help students balance education and life in a rapidly changing world. Through flexible schedules, challenging courses and interactive learning, students achieve personal and career aspirations without putting their lives on hold. As of August 31, 2008, 362,100 students were enrolled at University of Phoenix, the largest private university in North America. University of Phoenix serves a diverse student population, offering associate's, bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degree programs from campuses and learning centers across the U.S. as well as online throughout the world.


Keri Ruiz
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