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FAU Hosts Reception for U.S. National Committee for UNIFEM National Board

BOCA RATON, FL (February 12, 2010) –Florida Atlantic University’s President’s Diversity Committee recently hosted a reception for the U.S. national committee for the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) national board at FAU’s Eleanor R. Baldwin House, 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton campus.

Carol Buchanan, president of UNIFEM’s U.S. national committee, highlighted the importance of UNIFEM, and how the organization is seeking funds to provide shelter and services for the women in Haiti. Dr. Luz Van Meek, president of the East Florida Chapter, highlighted the work and accomplishments of the Chapter since its inception in June 2008 and addressed the need for expansion to raise awareness of UNIFEM work around the world and local communities. This expansion will encompass the East Florida Chapter – Miami, which will be led by Dr. Maria Santamarina, UNIFEM EFC’s first vice president and FAU diversity officer.

“On behalf of the FAU President’s Diversity Committee, FAU fully endorses UNIFEM programs as they foster women’s empowerment and help advance the status of women worldwide,” said Santamarina.  “As a UNIFEM liaison, I will help to spearhead collaborative projects with UNIFEM that support this mission.” 

The UNIFEM organization is the women’s fund at the United Nations that is dedicated to advancing women’s rights and achieving gender quality.  It provides financial and technical assistance to innovative program strategies that foster women’s empowerment.

Also in attendance were FAU Interim President John Pritchett and First Lady Ginger Pritchett; Lalita Janke, FAU Board of Trustees member; Dr Manjunath Pendakur, dean of FAU’s Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters; Dr. Diane Alperin, FAU interim university provost; Dr. Kristen Murtaugh, FAU’s vice president of strategic planning and member of UNIFEM; as well as Dr. Dennis Gallon, president of Palm Beach State College.

For more information, contact Maria Santamarina at 561-297-0938 or


About Florida Atlantic University:

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serves more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses and sites. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts 10 colleges:  College of Architecture, Urban & Public Affairs, Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Biomedical Science, the College of Business, the College of  Education, the College of  Engineering & Computer Science, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, the Graduate College, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science. For more information, visit

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