Dee Sabol departs the Rochester Diversity Council: 'We weren't on the same page anymore'

Sabol had been the organization's executive director for seven years.

MLK Day breakfast
Dee Sabol, executive director of the Diversity Council, introduces poetry contest winners at the 24th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. "We Have a Dream" program at the Mayo Civic Center Arena on Jan. 21, 2019, in Rochester.
Post Bulletin file photo

ROCHESTER — Dee Sabol’s tenure as executive director of the Rochester Diversity Council has ended, the board said Monday.

The move was announced on the Diversity Council’s Facebook page. It applauded Sabol’s many initiatives, including securing “funding for the Rochester community Project Healings initiative for COVID vaccine awareness and the Bloomberg Mayor’s Challenge Co-Design Project,” but offered little detail behind the circumstances of her departure.

In an interview with the Post Bulletin, Sabol said she had completed much of what the Diversity Council had originally hired her to do when the board hired her seven years ago. But she said there had been a divergence between the board and herself about the future course of the council.

“It’s a small organization and has finite resources. And where we wanted to spend those resources, we weren’t kind of on the same page anymore,” Sabol said.

“I won’t say this wasn’t an abrupt end to that discussion. It was, but ultimately my plan is to be in this space continuing to do this work,” Sabol said.


Sabol’s last day was Friday. When asked more specifically about the circumstances of her departure, Sabol added, “We had been working toward a mutual decision. I think that’s all I can say.”

Founded 35 years ago, the Diversity Council’s mission is to educate people to embrace diversity as a foundation for a prosperous and inclusive community.

Phone calls to the Diversity Council were not returned. The website lists five people on its staff led by Stefanie Meunier as the council’s director of operations.

The board said it will begin looking for a new executive director in the upcoming weeks. And until a new leader is hired, it will be working with Allred Consulting, LLC, a company that provides advice to nonprofits and small businesses, to assist with the transition.

“We will be convening a community advisory committee with (Diversity Council) stakeholders to help the Board vision the future of the organization,” the board said on its Facebook page.

Sabol has her own consulting company and plans to focus on that in the near term. She said she was invested in “community-led systems change.”

“I haven’t really settled on a plan, but excited to have the opportunity to explore it,” she said.

Matthew Stolle has been a Post Bulletin reporter since 2000 and covered many of the beats that make up a newsroom. In his first several years, he covered K-12 education and higher education in Rochester before shifting to politics. He has also been a features writer. Today, Matt jumps from beat to beat, depending on what his editor and the Rochester area are producing in terms of news. Readers can reach Matthew at 507-281-7415 or
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