Monica Davy

Monica Davy

Monica Davy

As the Chief Culture, Diversity and Inclusion Officer at Vizient, Inc., Monica Davy, BA English '91, guides overarching strategy, program implementation and ongoing support for the company’s culture, DEI, engagement, community impact and corporate responsibility initiatives.

Davy has more than 28 years of experience. Prior to joining Vizient, she served as the Director of the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion, responsible for promoting, monitoring, and enforcing diversity and equal employment opportunity standards at NCUA. She oversaw the diversity requirements of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act within NCUA’s business practices and among regulated entities. 

Davy also served as executive director of the Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at the Internal Revenue Service.  

Davy holds a law degree from Howard University and served as a senior trial attorney at the Department of Health and Human Services where she litigated cases involving employment discrimination and federal personnel matters.

CHSS had the privilege to sit down with Davy to discuss her career path, how her CHSS degree played a pivotal role in her career trajectory, and her advice to students pursuing a degree in the humanities and social sciences. Here’s what she had to say.

Can you tell us about your college-to-career journey?

I knew at a very young age that I wanted to be a lawyer, mostly because I love to argue. I would argue about anything and debate any issue that I felt I was qualified to debate on. I knew that law school required a ton of reading, writing, and analytical skills. I decided to major in English so that I could make sure I knew how to write well, read for comprehension, and be able to analyze things that I wrote.

After Mason, I attended Howard University School of Law. In attending Howard University, there was always this social justice element. From there, I practiced law for 15 years as an employment lawyer at the Department of Health and Human Services. I then transitioned into equal opportunity in the diversity, equity, and inclusion space, and that's what I do now.

How has your CHSS degree helped you get where you are today?

My CHSS degree in English honed critical skills that have been invaluable in my career. The intensive reading, writing, and analysis required by the program prepared me for the demands of law school. I developed proficiency in comprehending complex texts, synthesizing information, and constructing persuasive arguments. These competencies enabled me to excel in studying and analyzing legal cases during my law education and primed me for a successful career as an employment lawyer at the Department of Health and Human Services. The critical thinking and communication abilities I built as an English major continue to serve me well in the diversity work that I do today.

What did you learn at Mason that has been most valuable to you?

Although I majored in English, I took every opportunity to enroll in electives in African American studies and social justice. These courses gave me insight into the experiences and struggles of marginalized groups in America. Understanding the history of what people have been through helps you to deal with the challenges or the barriers that they face today. This perspective has proven invaluable in my daily work, as I aim to recruit and retain diverse talent.

What is your favorite Mason memory?

I went to Mason from 1987 to 1991. It was an extremely different campus then, but I think something that existed then that still exists today is a sense of community and the diversity on campus. I remember my days hanging out in Sub I in the Black Student Association office. We just had so much fun. I pledged a sorority; I’m a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. We had a huge Greek presence at Mason then. I loved getting to know different people; we had people that came to Mason from all over the country. The diversity that exists at Mason, being exposed to so many different cultures and experiences, really enriched my life and made me who I am today.

What is your advice to current CHSS students?

Make sure that you take advantage of the vast array of classes that are offered at Mason and get to know your professors; they want to help you succeed.