FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 29, 2023
San Francisco Public Utilities Commission Hires dr. christian h. bijoux As Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer
Chris brings over two decades of social policy and racial justice experience to the new role.
SAN FRANCISCO — The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) announced today the appointment of dr. christian h. bijoux as the agency’s new Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer. In this role, chris will lead the development, implementation, and reporting of equity-based programs and projects within the SFPUC. He will be responsible for advancing the strategies that attract, retain, and promote an inclusive workforce. He will also lead the agency's efforts to define, assess, and cultivate diversity.
Chris has over 20 years of experience in racial justice, particularly in legal and education systems. His work addressing race and community development, implicit bias, and disparities in youth welfare systems has helped many across the public and private sectors develop and realize their vision for racial equity.
"At the SFPUC, we recognize that racial disparities persist in our city. Addressing these injustices and challenges requires every leader, department, and employee to step up to this moral calling and responsibility," said SFPUC General Manager Dennis Herrera. "Today, I’m thrilled to announce dr. christian h. bijoux as our new Chief Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer. His proven ability to drive meaningful change will be instrumental as we build on the progress and objectives of our agency’s Racial Equity Action Plan, both within our agency and in the communities we serve."
"I am honored to join the SFPUC in this impactful role," said dr. bijoux. "I have dedicated my career to fostering environments where everyone feels seen, heard, and valued, and I am excited to bring that passion to an agency that is committed to delivering on the promise of racial justice. I'm looking forward to working closely with the staff and leadership to strengthen a culture of inclusivity, respect, and equity. Together, we will tackle the challenges of today and build a more equitable future for all."
Prior to joining the SFPUC, chris served as the Deputy Director of Equity and Racial Justice and as a Senior Fellow at the Center for Juvenile Justice Reform at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy. He also served as the Director of the Dually Involved Youth Initiative at Santa Clara County Superior Court, worked as a Managing Partner & Senior Consultant at Bijoux Consulting Group, and held numerous positions in various organizations aimed at advancing racial justice and inclusion.
Chris is a recognized voice in the field of social policy, holding a Ph.D. in Social Policy from Brandeis University’s Heller School of Social Policy, an MBA in Management from Keller Graduate School of Management, a Master of Public Health in Epidemiology from Drexel University School of Public Health, and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from The City College of New York. He has also received the Drexel Magazine’s 40 Under 40 Award in 2017 from Drexel University and was the Gerben DeJong and Janice DeJong Fellow at Brandeis University.
SFPUC Actions Towards Racial Equity
The SFPUC has made significant strides in racial equity through several noteworthy initiatives. The agency is the first utility in the nation to publish a comprehensive racial equity action plan followed by two comprehensive updates. The SFPUC's Commission adopted a racial justice policy that provided important guidance both for internal initiatives but also external issues like equitable land use, trauma informed care, equity in contracting, and more. There are established Racial Equity Leads in every enterprise and bureau along with working groups that have developed a focused and tailored racial equity strategy based on each organization's unique needs and characteristics. A Racial Equity Resource Library has been developed to provide SFPUC employees to learn and take action at any stage of their equity journey. The SFPUC has procured and is poised to award almost $20 million in as-needed contracts for racial equity consultants to support the implementation of this work, and is currently launching a new racial equity, diversity and inclusion dedicated staff structure, led by the new Chief Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer. Multiple employee pulse surveys have been implemented that include diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging questions, and the agency recently completed a focused comprehensive racial equity survey.
In the last year alone, the SFPUC expanded its diversity recruitment strategies, piloted "stay" interviews, adopted a comprehensive case management system, and launched a pilot employee mentorship program. Understanding that progress in real equity necessitates a commitment to action over a sustained period of time, the addition of dr. bijoux in this new role will strengthen agency-wide collaboration and progress advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion in its workforce and programs.
Chris will assume his role with the SFPUC on July 10.
About the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission
The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is a department of the City and County of San Francisco. It delivers drinking water to 2.7 million people in the Bay Area, collects and treats wastewater for the City and County of San Francisco, and meets over 70 percent of the electricity demand in San Francisco. Our mission is to provide our customers with high-quality, efficient and reliable water, power, and sewer services in a manner that values environmental and community interests and sustains the resources entrusted to our care. Learn more at sfpuc.org.