Mayor Muriel Bowser is appointing DC’s first Chief Equity Officer today. Amber Hewitt, Bowser’s pick, will head the newly-formed Office of Racial Equity, announced by the city in February. Both the office and Hewitt’s appointment mark a more focused effort by the District to tackle equity issues after protests demanding racial justice swept the city last summer.
Hewitt—who holds a PhD in counseling psychology—has predominantly focused on health equity throughout her career. She was Director of Health Equity at non-profit Families USA and a health policy fellow in Senator Cory Booker’s office. She also holds adjunct faculty appointments at American University and Catholic University. This isn’t Hewitt’s first city role: Bowser named Hewitt to the Commission on Fathers, Men, and Boys in 2017.
As Chief Equity Officer, Hewitt’s first order of business is to run an “equity analysis” of the city. That will help shape priorities and policy goals for the Office of Racial Equity, which will be instituted in partnership with other DC agencies.