Affirmative Action director dies

Maria Nann

Willie Boston

Credit: DKS Editors

Willie Boston, the director of the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action at Kent State, passed away last week.

Steve Michael, Vice Provost for the Office of Diversity, said his colleagues went to check on Boston when he didn’t show up for work Wednesday.

“He’d passed away in his sleep,” Michael said, adding that the cause of death is still “inconclusive” at this time.

Michael said he had had a meeting with Boston on Tuesday.

“We were just joking around,” he said. “I didn’t know he’d be gone the next day. It’s a difficult topic and a difficult time.

“Everybody who knows him will tell you he is a very gentle, kindhearted, softspoken man,” he said. “He will be very missed in this community.”

Boston oversaw the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action, which is responsible for ensuring that the university is in compliance with equal opportunity and affirmative action laws. It also conducts training and workshops for students, faculty and staff on such issues.

There will be a memorial service tomorrow from 11:30 to 12:30 a.m. in the Kent State Student Center Ballroom.

Contact principal reporter Maria Nann at [email protected].