University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Office of the Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

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Kimberly J. Shinew

Headshot of Kimberly Shinew

Leadership in Diversity
2020 Larine Y. Cowan Make a Difference Award

Kimberly Shinew is considered by her colleagues to be the complete package regarding her deep commitment to advocating and developing programs related to diversity and inclusion. Driven by the urgent need to address disparities and social justice in society, Dr. Shinew is described by her nominators as “the trusted ‘go-to voice’ for leadership in the College of Applied Health Sciences to represent and recommend policies related to diversity and inclusion.”

Throughout her career at Illinois, Dr. Shinew has been an unwavering advocate for faculty diversification, transforming departmental culture to advance department and college metrics related to diversity. As an internationally recognized leading expert on leisure behavior of racial and ethnic minorities, Dr. Shinew’s work delineates the intersecting relationships between race/ethnicity and gender within leisure settings. She has chaired numerous efforts and committees, including the Assessment of Illinois Doctoral Experiences (AIDE) to evaluate the experiences of doctoral students across campus from 2014 to 2016, and served on the Council for Faculty Excellence that advises the Provost on issues related to faculty diversity and excellence. She is a thought leader and actively engaged in campus dialogue on diversity. Dr. Shinew has consistently demonstrated sustained impacts that contribute to the betterment of campus diversity and inclusion.


Kimberly Shinew is a Professor in the Department of Recreation, Sport and Tourism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She received her Ph.D. in parks, recreation, and tourism from Clemson University. Her research focuses on the interrelated effects of race, ethnicity, social class, and gender on leisure preferences and behaviors, the impact of constraints, discrimination, and other factors on access to recreation and leisure services and activities, the roles of leisure spaces and activities in facilitating interaction among diverse groups, and the roles of leisure in encouraging physical activity and active living. Her research has been published in Journal of Leisure Research, Leisure Sciences, Sex Roles, Journal of Physical Activity & Health, Annals of Behavioral Medicine, Journal of Park and Recreation Administration, Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies, Qualitative Research in Sport and Exercise, American Journal of Health Promotion, and other outlets. Dr. Shinew served as the Editor of the Journal of Leisure Research for six years. She currently serves as the Chair of the College of Applied Health Sciences Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee.