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Daniel Terrio, a member of the first cohort of Dominican University’s Applied Social Justice Ph.D. program, was a recipient of the 2024 Unity Award from Milwaukee magazine.

This annual award, presented to four individuals and one business on March 7, 2024, recognizes honorees for their achievements in making Milwaukee more equitable and inclusive.

Terrio was among the first students to enroll in Dominican’s new Doctor of Philosophy in Applied Social Justice program, which was established in 2023.

The first known social justice doctoral program in the United States, it prepares leaders to effectively address issues of social justice while assessing the roots of inequity, injustice and disempowerment.

Terrio is Milwaukee County’s first diversity, equity and inclusion director, a position he took on nearly three years ago. The first Indigenous and LGBTQ+ leader in Milwaukee County history, Terrio is charged with promoting diverse hiring practices and creating and implementing diversity, equity and inclusion policies and education. He is credited with creating the county’s first Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council, employee resource groups and gender affirming policies, and for coaching county leaders and employees in DEI best practices.

Terrio is also a national public speaker, a member of the Wisconsin LGBTQ History Project Advisory Panel and a two-term former co-president of United National Indian Tribal Youth Inc., the largest indigenous youth organization in the United States.