Benjamin Dixon, of Blacksburg, Va., vice president for multicultural affairs at Virginia Tech, was conferred with the title, “vice president emeritus” by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors during the board’s quarterly meeting Nov 6.

The title of emeritus may be conferred on retired professors and associate professors, administrative officers, librarians, and exceptional staff members who have given exemplary service to the university and who are specially recommended to the Board of Visitors by Virginia Tech President Charles W. Steger. Nominated individuals who are approved by the board receive an emeritus certificate from the university.

Dixon was named Virginia Tech’s first vice president for multicultural affairs in 1998. Since that time, he has shaped a broad range of diversity initiatives and programs at the university; has shaped university policy and practice related to intercultural relations, diversity, and equity issues; and has been an effective advocate for diverse groups within the campus community. He also developed and implemented several programs, polices, and practices designed to promote and support diversity and multicultural opportunities for all students, staff, and faculty.

He was instrumental in the development of the university’s Diversity Strategic Plan, the Virginia Tech Principles of Community, the Commission of Equal Opportunity and Diversity, and the Multicultural Affairs Fellows program. He played an important role in the establishment of the Presidential Campus Enrichment Grant program, which provides competitive scholarships to students who are committed to fostering educational diversity at Virginia Tech.

Dixon grew the size and scope of the Office of Multicultural Affairs and regularly shared his expertise, vision, and energy through numerous presentations at local, regional, and national meetings on multicultural and diversity issues.

He received his bachelor’s degree from Howard University, a master’s degree from Harvard University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech is the most comprehensive university in the Commonwealth of Virginia and is among the top research universities in the nation. Today, Virginia Tech’s eight colleges are dedicated to quality, innovation, and results through teaching, research, and outreach activities. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 180 academic degree programs.