Deanna Fialho, Director, Yellow House
Deanna is new to the Queen’s community, joining the Division of Student Affairs in July 2020 to lead the operations of the Yellow House. Her prime focus this academic year is to work with Clubs and various stakeholders on campus to build a strategic framework for the House, including a Mandate and Mission and a university-wide consultation to re-name the House.
Deanna has worked in the field of EDI for over ten years with a strong commitment to developing environments where difference is cultivated into cohesion–where people are empowered to share their unique talents and traits, allowing their best selves and resounding potential to emerge. Her passion for seeing uniqueness as a strength has taken her through diverse project work in both public and private spheres across retail, aviation and financial services. Using education as a tool to advance organizational success is a prime focus, she has lead teams through technology integrations, transformative HR policy and social change through progressive community programs.
Deanna holds a Master of Educational Leadership and Policy from OISE, University of Toronto and an undergraduate degree in sociology from Carleton University. Learn more about Deanna.
Tianna Edwards, EDI Coordinator
Tianna is responsible for coordinating programs and communications for Yellow House. She loves the opportunity to grow this community for QTBIPOC students on campus. This role aligns with her purpose and goals to support queer and racialized students and make campus a great place for all. Tianna grew up in Kingston and moved away for 10 years to complete her post-secondary education and begin her career as a journalist. She founded and runs the blog, Keep up with Kingston and is currently completing her Masters in Cultural Studies at Queen’s, with a focus on The Black Experience in Kingston. She has a BA degree (Hons) in Media Studies as well as a diploma in Journalism from the University of Guelph Humber.
Kel Martin, Sexual and Gender Diversity Advisor
(They/them or he/him)
Kel is a queer, trans and non-binary OCT certified art/drama teacher, artist and researcher who is engaged in a vast range of work with the queer and trans community at Queen’s and broadly within Kingston. They are honoured and excited to be part of the Yellow House. Kel has engaged with a variety of sexual and gender diversity focused projects such as leadership within Gay Straight Alliances (GSA) in high school and post-secondary contexts, coordinating large events such as Queer Prom, facilitating events and meetings with TransFamily Kingston, support of the launch of the online knowledge mobilization hub GEGI Project, artistic initiatives for Kingston Pride, support of a project to implement gender neutral washrooms at Queen’s through the Provost’s Action Group on Gender and Sexual Diversity and more. Kel is thrilled to lay important groundwork for this position, all while engaging in committees and working groups to create meaningful change at Queen’s and continuing to engage in the queer community. They look forward to bringing you events and resources in the coming months, listening to concerns and assisting, as well as collaborating with you to bring your visions to life.
Meet Equity, Diversity, Inclusion Student Assistant:
Tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Ayden Adeyanju-Jackson, and I am a second-year global development major. I am also a guard on the Queen's Men's Basketball Team. In terms of EDI experience, this pandemic has given me the opportunity to plan and host a multitude of events for the Queen's Student Diversity Project. My most memorable experience was planning and hosting the Activism and Academics Assembly this past year. The conference was a response to the reports made by Stolen By Smith, and aimed to raise awareness towards micro and macroaggressions as well as systemic racism on campus. This experience fostered the passion and expertise needed to contribute to the Ontario University Sports Association's Anti-Racism Project and the EDII efforts in Queen's Athletics and Recreation department.
What does Yellow House mean to you (as a bi-racial student on campus being in a role that serves your community)?
As a Bi-Racial student on campus who has had to navigate prejudice and systemic racism on campus, the Yellow House to me serves as a safe space, sense of community, and a symbol of change on campus. I am looking forward to working for a centre that will imminently and sustainably increase diversity, acceptance, and inclusivity on campus; so that more people are able to reap and enjoy the benefits of a Queen's education.
What are you most proud of accomplishing this year?
I am most proud of the resilience, adaptability, and innovation of equity-based clubs on campus in consideration of COVID-19. Specifically, clubs were able to seamlessly adapt their regular activities from in-person to online while maintaining the same level of engagement. The innovations made by these clubs will have a profound, long-lasting impact on accessibility and outreach post-pandemic. I am also proud to see the widespread and sustained nature of social justice activism this past year. I feel optimistic knowing that people are committed to promoting the interests of traditionally underrepresented groups despite having to negotiate their own adversities caused by the pandemic.
Favorite show to binge right now?
I do not have a current show that I am binge watching right now. I am currently recovering from my Mindhunter binge!
Do you have a favorite podcast?
I enjoy listening to VOX on my free time. The podcast has interesting perspectives on contemporary issues relating to covid-19, racial unrest, and social inequality.
Born A Crime by Trevor Noah - Very interesting to see what it's like for a Bi-Racial person to be a social, political, and economic outlier in an already racially segregated society.