Loyola welcomes new General Counsel and Director of Government Affairs


Sharonda Williams, J.D. stands in her office in Marquette Hall Monday, August 23, 2021. Williams began her position as Loyola’s general counsel this summer

Loyola introduced Sharonda Williams as the General Counsel and Director of Government Affairs over the summer. Williams is a graduate of Loyola’s law school.

In an unexpected addition to her duties as the General Counsel, Williams has also taken on the role of Interim Title IX Coordinator. She will have hands-on involvement with Title IX cases while the search for a permanent Title IX Coordinator continues after the departure of Dr. Diana Ward earlier this year. Williams is sharing some of these responsibilities with Interim Chief Student Conduct Officer Marquita Morgan-Jones.

One of her duties as the General Counsel will be to examine policy, such as bias response and Title IX, to ensure efficiency, a statement from Patricia Murret, associate director of public affairs, said.

Since she started working, Williams has been heavily reviewing the human resources policies, including how COVID-19 impacts this department, reviewing the university’s contracting policy, and how the faculty handbook relates to the human resources manual, she said.

“There’s been some things that I’ve identified that don’t necessarily correspond to each other in the best way, which will need some revision,” Williams said.

Williams said her previous job as city attorney under former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu prepared her for her new position at Loyola.

“I equate Loyola to a small city,” Williams said, “in the sense that there are multiple departments that have all different needs.”

Since graduating from the law school, Williams has stayed involved in the Loyola community. She was the president of the law alumni board, was a member of the alumni board and the board of trustees for Loyola, and served on the visiting board for the law school. During this time, she noted some of the things she wanted to change.

“There is always the issue of diversity, equity, and inclusion that I am always interested in,” Williams said.

She has already started conversations with alumni on how to advance the university’s inclusion efforts, Williams said.

Loyola expressed excitement for Williams’ perspective on legal issues as the year goes on.

“Sharonda is a brilliant legal mind and a great diplomat,” the statement from Murret said. “We are looking forward to her work to constantly improve our processes, to help the University strategize in contract negotiations, and to bring her love of Loyola to the work.”