Professor Kivel served as department chair and graduate coordinator in the Department of Recreation, Parks & Tourism Administration (RPTA). Currently, as the Director of the Community Engagement Center, Kivel oversees Service Learning, Community Service and Academic Internships for the campus. In 2001, Dr. Kivel received a year-long Leverhulme Research Fellowship to work at Leeds Metropolitan University in the United Kingdom.
Dr. Kivel has published dozens of peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters and in 2016, published the book: Diversity and Inclusion in the Recreation Profession: Organizational Perspectives, with Dr. Ingrid Schneider, the University of Minnesota. Prior to careers in academia, Dr. Kivel worked for the feminist newspaper, Off Our Backs in 1984 and also worked as a lobbyist for the National Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Clubs. In that position, Dr. Kivel was responsible for writing testimonies for House and Senate hearings on pay equity and pension reform.
And in 1998, Dr. Kivel worked with several adults and young people to found Lavender Youth Recreation & Information Center (LYRIC), a social-recreational and leadership program for LGBTQI youth. Dr. Kivel also worked with several female police officers, a social worker and former sex-workers to create a peer-led, harm reduction program for women who have been exploited by the sex-trafficking industry. Community Against Sexual Harm (CASH) is now in its 14th year of operation.