Bilal W. Ansari

Photo of Bilal W. Ansari

Assistant Vice President for Campus Engagement

413-597-3359
Jenness House

Bilal Ansari is Assistant Vice President for Campus Engagement at Williams College.  As AVP for Campus Engagement in the Office of Institutional Diversity and Equity, he works with students, faculty, and staff to build an inclusive and equitable campus.  He partners with units and departments across campus.  Immediately prior to assuming his current role, he was the Director of the Davis Center.  Ansari served as Williams’ first Muslim chaplain and Assistant Director in the Center for Learning in Action between 2011 and 2014. Before returning to Williams, he served as Dean of Student Services and Director of Student Life at Zaytuna College in Berkeley, California between 2014 and 2017.

Ansari has worked in both federal and state prisons for over 16 years challenging the system of racial, gender, and religious inequalities. As a chaplain in some of the most volatile environments, he counseled and managed interventions through intense institutional crises. Ansari has worked as a community organizer fighting social and environmental injustices in Connecticut. In 2013, he was awarded the Connecticut Center for a New Economy’s Outstanding Leadership Award for 15 years of community activism and organizing that improved the economic and social well-being of working families in urban centers and rural communities. In 2016, based on his efforts, achievements, and writing, which includes a number of critical and reflective social commentary articles, he was named to The MPower 100, a list of American Muslim top social justice leaders.

Ansari is a first-generation college student and earned an Associate of Science in Liberal Arts from Ohlone College, Bachelor of Science in Human Services from Springfield College, Master of Divinity equivalency from Hartford Seminary, and Doctor of Ministry from Pacific School of Religion. Ansari teaches leadership development as a faculty associate and co-director of the Islamic Chaplaincy Program at Hartford Seminary.

Ansari is a legacy staff member; his great-grandfather and great-grandmother worked at Williams for 40 years.

He mentors students advise student organizations and provide counseling assistance.

Education

A.S. Ohlone College, Liberal Arts
B.S. Springfield College, Criminal Justice
M.Div. Hartford Theological Seminary
M.A. Hartford Seminary, IslamicStds&Christian-MuslmRel
D.Min. Pacific School of Religion, Counseling
  • Chair, Toward Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity (TIDE) Grant Program
  • Chair, Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Awareness, and Action (IDEAA) Working Group
  • Co-Chair, Committee on Diversity and Community (CDC)
  • Co-Chair, Campus Safety Advisory Group (CSAG)
  • President’s Administrative Group (PAG)
  • Communications Advisory Group (CAG)
  • Davis Center Building Committee
  • Davis Lecture Committee
  • Diversity Inclusion Racial Equity (DIRE) town committee
  • Racial Justice and Police Reform (RJPR) community committee