President Kyle named to Governor's Task Force on Combating Campus Sexual Violence
Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced on Sept. 22 the appointment of 30 members to the Governor’s Task Force on Combating Campus Sexual Violence. Among those appointed to serve on the task force is Radford University President Penelope W. Kyle.
According to the governor's announcement, the task force, which is chaired by Attorney General Mark Herring, will hold quarterly meetings that will focus on finding common solutions to building safer, more educated college communities within the Commonwealth, with the goal of creating best practices for education and prevention of sexual violence on campus.
"It will be a special privilege to serve with my fellow task force members as we work to examine and make recommendations to address the issue of sexual violence on Virginia’s college campuses," Kyle said. "Preventing sexual violence on our college campuses is a responsibility of the utmost importance for the Commonwealth."
The establishment of the task force was announced August 21, as a component of a joint comprehensive effort by the governor and attorney general to address sexual assault and violence on college campuses. Kyle and other representatives of Virginia’s public four-year colleges and universities traveled to Richmond to support the effort and signed a joint declaration to combat sexual violence.
According to the executive order signed by the governor, the task force will:
- recommend best practices for campus officials to respond to sexual violence.
- recommend best practices to reinforce existing relationships and form new relationships between Virginia’s institutions of higher education, campus police, local law enforcement, commonwealth’s attorneys, mental health counselors and advocacy organizations.
- recommend policies governing sexual violence and associated procedures for the investigation and resolution of complaints.
- examine sexual violence prevention and awareness programs and recommend measures to maximize best practices for these programs.
- recommend measures to encourage reporting of sexual violence.
- assess the degree of accessibility of campus services and programs, coordination with community resources and programs and efforts to make students aware of these resources.
"I commend the governor and the attorney general for calling Virginia to action," Kyle said. "Sexual assault and harassment have no place on our college campuses and are contrary to the ethos we endeavor to instill within higher education. All students should be able to earn their education in an environment free of intimidation, harassment, assault or victimization. We know that one victim is one too many. I look forward to working with my colleagues on the task force to make actionable recommendations to better address these issues."
President Kyle is RU’s sixth, and first female, president. Prior to her appointment at Radford, she had more than 30 years of experience in state government, higher education, and the corporate and legal worlds. She holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Virginia School of Law, an M.B.A. degree from the College of William and Mary and an undergraduate degree from Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C. She also completed postgraduate work in English at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.