Chief Inclusive Excellence Officer for The Citadel
Shawn Spann Edwards is a diversity, equity and inclusion, human resources and management professional and professor. Dr. Edwards is the Chief Inclusive Excellence Officer for The Citadel and is responsible for leading the diversity, equity and inclusion strategy for the institution. She is also the CEO and Principal Consultant of Solutions by Shawn Edwards, LLC, a consulting practice focused on providing diversity, equity, inclusion, culture alignment strategies and human resources services to its clients. Additionally, Shawn is an adjunct faculty member at the College of Charleston.
Dr. Edwards currently serves as a board member for Together SC and the YWCA of Greater Charleston. She is also a member of the Diversity Council for the SC Chamber of Commerce, a member of Explore Charleston’s Heart for Hospitality Advisory Board, and Chair of Temple University’s DBA Alumni Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Board. Dr. Edwards is a former board member of the SC Society for Human Resource Management (SC SHRM) and Palmetto SHRM (formerly Tri-County Human Resource Mgt. Association) and a former Honorary Commander for Joint Base Charleston.
She holds the designation of Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certified by the Human Resources Certification Institute and is a SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRMSCP). Shawn is a mentor to many and has served as a volunteer for several organizations in the Charleston area and has spoken at various schools, career fairs and organizations on a range of topics to include diversity and inclusion, mentoring, leadership, nonprofit board diversity, and many others.
Dr. Edwards earned her Doctor of Business Administration from Temple University, an MBA with a Human Resource Management concentration and a Graduate Certificate in College Teaching and Learning from Walden University, a Bachelor of Arts in Management from Webster University and an Associate of Arts in Fashion Merchandising from Bauder College. Her research interests include nonprofit management and governance, organizational diversity, equity and inclusion, human resource management, strategic management and organizational culture.
Previously, Shawn was awarded the Innovator Under 35 Award by the Bethune-Leonard Section of the National Council of Negro Women Inc. and Student of the Year and Young Alumni awards from Webster University’s Charleston Campus. She was also inducted into the National Honor Society for Business Schools Delta Mu Delta and Beta Gamma Sigma, the International Business School Honor Society . Shawn is a certified trainer with certifications in Polarity Thinking, BRIDGES to Success and DISC and she is currently becoming MBTI Certified. Shawn was a facilitator for the Charleston Illumination Project, a 2013 fellow of Furman University’s Riley Institute Diversity Leaders Initiative, was recognized as one of the Charleston Regional Business Journal’s 2015 Forty Under 40, is a 2006 graduate of Leadership Charleston, a 2016 graduate of Leadership South Carolina, and the recipient of the Fall 2017 Spirit of the Citadel Presidential Award.
Dr. Edwards is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. and long-term member of Christian Praise & Worship Center, located in the Accabee section of North Charleston. Under the leadership of Lonnie M. Palmer, Shawn is an active member serving in many capacities including the ministerial staff. Originally from Jersey City, NJ, Shawn resides in Charleston, SC. with her husband Derrick J. Edwards, together they have five children and two grandchildren