Diversity Woman Media has been recognized for its longtime commitment to advancing diversity and inclusion through education, solution-based editorial, and events that bring together like-minded D&I leaders and champions. For the first time, Diversity Woman Media is coming to Kansas City. The vision is to host an event to support the diversity and inclusion learning and development needs of the audience, to present the latest research and trends, and to bring people together to share best practices and to collectively explore solutions to address new opportunities and challenges.
Markus is an accomplished leader in the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Supplier diversity fields with extensive experience in the design and execution of strategies to drive sustainable change.
In his current role as the Head of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging for Sunrun, the largest home solar panel and battery storage company in the U.S., he leads a team responsible for making solar inclusive for all. Prior to Sunrun his career included DEI leadership positions at companies like CareFusion, Symantec, Best Buy and Google.
Markus is also a facilitator for Cornell University’s eCornell Diversity & Inclusion Certificate Program. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix and a Master of Science in Human Resource Leadership from Louisiana State University.
Markus served more than 21 years of combined service in the United States Navy and Navy Reserves. He retired from military service in 2011 as a Logistics Specialist Chief Petty Officer and among numerous awards he was also selected to serve a prestigious three-year tour as a Facilitator for the Navy’s Center for Personal and Professional Development.
As the Diversity Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Integration Director, Karla identifies opportunities to integrate the DEI lens on processes and systems across Intel’s business units. This leads to efficiencies and ensures consistency of the different company business units to deploy meaningful DEI programs that drive transformation.
Karla has been with Intel for more than 22 years. She started her career at Intel Costa Rica as Customs & Free Trade Zone Specialist in the Finance Department and then moved to Corporate Affairs as the Government Affairs Manager. She then became the LAR Corporate Affairs Director with responsibilities for corporate social responsibility, innovation & social impact programs for Latin America. In 2017 she moved to Arizona and joined the Global Diversity and Inclusion Office as Latinx, LGBT+ and India communities Program Manager.
Karla is the best-selling author of Unleash Your Career Potential, a speaker, coach and certified leadership trainer. She is an Aspen Institute fellow under the Central American Leadership Initiative (CALI) with INCAE and a certified mentor of Vital Voices in Costa Rica, a non-governmental organization (NGO) that identifies, trains and empowers emerging women leaders and social entrepreneurs around the globe. Karla holds an MBA in International Business from the University of Costa Rica. Karla is a certified scuba diver, incorporates mediations as part of her daily routine and enjoys reading and dancing.
Trey Boynton has spent her professional career working to create inclusive environments. For nearly 20 years, she worked in university settings driving equity and inclusion for students, faculty and staff at the University of Michigan. She shifted to the tech industry in 2017 when she joined Duo Security as their first head of diversity and inclusion. As the lead for overall diversity strategy, Trey envisioned a bold road ahead for Duo and implemented company-wide programs and initiatives that positively grew Duo’s magical culture and team. Duo achieved a milestone in August 2018 when it was acquired by Cisco as a cornerstone of their softwareas-a-service (SAAS) cloud security business. In her new Cisco role as the Global Lead for Inclusion Strategy & Alignment, she manages a team dedicated to building and delivering on inclusion promises and aspirations at scale.
For Trey, inclusion work is deeply personal. She describes it as head and heart work centered on creating space so that employees and teams are valued, celebrated, and able to define their own success. In short, her ultimate goal is to reduce barriers to brilliance.
Originally from her beloved northern California, she studied at Spelman College, Georgetown University and the University of Michigan. Her most important job is helping her two teen feminist daughters continue to be awesome and giving attention to their needy dog, Toby. In the two minutes of time she has left to spare, she fancies herself an overly hopeful San Francisco 49ers fan, a budding Lego engineer, and an expert on all things Jane Austen.
Candi Castleberry Singleton
Candi Castleberry Singleton is the Vice President of Diversity Partnership Strategy & Engagement at Twitter. She is also the founder of the award-winning Dignity & Respect Campaign, which has helped organizations create more inclusive work environments. As an experienced diversity and inclusion leader, she created The Bolt-On to Built-In Model™ featured in her chapter of Crossing the Divide: Intergroup Leadership in a World of Difference. She has developed successful strategies and initiatives in technology, telecommunications, and healthcare including Xerox, Sun Microsystems, Motorola, and UPMC.
Candi has served as adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon University. She received an MBA from Pepperdine, a bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley, and completed the Stanford Executive Human Resources program.
Di got into the field of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging because she was angry. Di grew up in foster care, as a ward of the state of Massachusetts, being told one thing about “our values”, but seeing an entirely different story when it came to how we deal with systemic inequity. We say we care, but how often do you hear about kids in foster care, really? Have you ever heard a politician bring it up? That invisible-ness silences people. It makes our experiences not valid or valued. The older Di got, the more people she found identifying with that invisible-ness; here but not whole. Quietly trying to assimilate to the dominant culture, but always unable to do so without trading away a piece of themselves. This is the fight that still drives her today.
While obtaining a degree in this field; specifically gender, race and class studies, she rose quickly as a leader to her peers. Di organized educational opportunities, speaking engagements, and social justice space for others to grow and self-educate in, including a luncheon with Dr. Jane Goodall! Di completed internships for the Atlanta Child Advocacy Center as an advocate for transitioning youth from foster care to adulthood and The Statewide Independent Living Council as a researcher for inclusion in the differently-abled community.
After graduation, Di worked for big names in biotech; including Dana Farber Cancer Institute, The Broad Institute, Harvard Medical School and others as a People Ops facilitator. In 2016 DiI started her own consulting practice and since then she has worked to educate leaders, allies, abolitionists and advocates on Inclusion in the big name tech and biotech spaces, including those at top Fortune 500 companies.
Di is a white-Hispanic, queer, mom-of-two and she is the Head of Inclusion at Jambb, a Boston based tech team working in Blockchain, influencers, and NFTs.
Rebecca Cokley is a program officer in the President’s Office, developing the U.S. disability rights program strategy, the first of its kind at the Ford Foundation.
Prior to joining Ford, Rebecca was the co-founder and director of the Disability Justice Initiative at the Center for American Progress (CAP), where she built out a progressive disability policy platform that both protected rights and services disabled people and their families depend on for survival, but also developed innovative solutions for the future. She was responsible for organizing a campaign that resulted in an unprecedented 12 Presidential candidates developing disability policy platforms. Prior to her work at CAP, she served as the executive director for the National Council on Disability where she worked on sexual violence on college campuses, policing reform, and the civil rights of disabled parents. A three-time Presidential Appointee, Rebecca served in key policy roles at the Department of Education and the Department of Health and Human Services, as well as a successful stint at the White House where she oversaw diversity and inclusion efforts for the Obama Administration.
Rebecca is a frequent speaker and contributor on issues of public policy and disability inclusion in the media and at major national conferences. She’s a frequent contributor on “American Voices with Alicia Menendez;” has written for CNN, the Washington Post, and Rewire; and has appeared on Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. She was the 2020 Richman Distinguished Fellow in Public Life from Brandeis University. She has a bachelor’s degree in politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz where she was a Pister Scholar.
Dr. Patti Fletcher
Dr. Patti Fletcher is an internationally sought-after speaker, seasoned tech executive, award-winning marketing and business influencer, board member, angel investor, and currently serves as Co-CMO at Workhuman, CEO at PSDNetwork, and Chief Creator at Disrupter Productions.
Dr. Patti has appeared on NASDAQ, Cheddar, Bloomberg, and Greater Boston among others. Patti writes for Entrepreneur.com, The Guardian, Forbes, and The Digitalist, and has contributed to/been featured in Time Magazine, CNBC, RealSimple, Al Jazeera, Fortune, Newsweek, The Boston Globe, Thrive Global, The Muse, The Huffington Post, and many more. She is the author of best-selling Disrupters: Success Strategies From Women Who Break The Mold. She is included in the coveted list of “18 Women to Watch in 2018” by Brown, Brothers, Harriman.
Her clients include independent contractors and small business owners, to lean start-ups to Fortune 500s such as SAP, IBM, Salesforce, AIG, Intuit, and Kaiser Permanente. She worked with HR.com as a Leadership Futurist focused on workplace equity, technology, and disruption in the talent economy, is a founding member of Board++, and is currently Executive-in-Residence at Babson College WINLab, on the Supervisory Board at Southern New Hampshire University, a founding member Entrepreneur Magazine Mentors, and formerly EIR at the Simmons College Entrepreneurship program.
Trinidad Hermida Once upon a time there was a creative who, due to the unfortunate circumstances of society, suppressed her creative gene to learn how to maneuver up the corporate ladder. Fast forward 10 years – she has discovered how to embrace both the creative gene and corporate lessons to benefit this generation.
Trinidad Hermida is the Head of Diversity and Inclusion at Niantic, Inc., an AR technology company that produces mobile games, including Pokémon GO, Harry Potter: Wizards Unite and Ingress, which have jointly had over 800 million downloads.Trinidad Hermida has the drive and ambition to champion positive change.
Since joining Niantic in December 2018 she has brought expertise and passion in championing burgeoning diversity initiatives. She is here to empower each and every person who crosses her path. Trinidad believes that by “setting a standard of incorporating everyone’s genius, we can change the game”. Trinidad is excited to learn from all of our journeys and partner together on what we as a cohesive team can do to make the world a more diverse and inclusive home for all of us.
On any given day you might catch Trinidad traveling the world to visit friends or volunteering her time to educate the next generation through life coaching. Follow me @thisistrini to hear about everything from Pop Culture to Technology and everything in between (Music, Diversity, Fashion, Virtual Reality, Life, Religion/Spiritually, and Relationships).
David J. Johns
David J. Johns is Executive Director of the National Black Justice Coalition. David is known for his passion, public policy acumen and fierce advocacy for youth. He is an enthusiast about equity—leveraging his time, talent and treasures to address the needs of individuals and communities often neglected and ignored. A recognized thought leader and social justice champion, David’s career has focused on improving life outcomes and opportunities for Black people.
On September 1, 2017, David Johns began his next life chapter as the executive director of the National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC)—a civil rights organization dedicated to the empowerment of Black lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) people, including people living with HIV/AIDS. NBJC’s mission is to end racism, homophobia, and LGBTQ bias and stigma.
In 2013, Johns was appointed as the first executive director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans (Initiative) by President Barack H. Obama and served until the last day of the Obama Administration in January, 2017. The Initiative worked across federal agencies and with partners and communities nationwide to produce a more effective continuum of education and workforce development programs for African American students of all ages. Under his leadership, the Initiative studied the experiences of students—leveraged a partnership with Johnson Publishing Company (EBONY Magazine) to produce a series of African American Educational Summits (AfAmEdSummits) at college campuses throughout the country, where the only experts who sat in front of the White House seal were students as young as elementary school. The recommendations that students made at AfAmEdSummits have been used to improve policies, programs and practices, including curriculum, designed to ensure that students thrive—both in school and in life.
Prior to his White House appointment, Johns was a senior education policy advisor to the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) under the leadership of U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa). Before working for the Senate HELP Committee, Johns served under the leadership of the late U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA). Johns also was a Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Fellow in the office of Congressman Charles Rangel (D-NY). Johns has worked on issues affecting low-income and minority students, neglected youth, early childhood education, and Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). His research as an Andrew W. Mellon Fellow served as a catalyst to identify, disrupt and supplant negative perceptions of black males—both within academia and society. Johns is committed to volunteer services and maintains an active commitment to improve literacy among adolescent minority males.
Johns has been featured as an influential politico and advocate by several publications and outlets, including TheRoot.com, NBC, EBONY and The Washington Post. Johns is a prominent strategist who offers commentary for several media outlets including BET, CNN, EducationPost, and TV One.
David is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in sociology and education policy at Columbia University. Johns obtained a master’s degree in sociology and education policy at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he graduated summa cum laude while simultaneously teaching elementary school in New York City. He graduated with honors from Columbia University in 2004 with a triple major in English, creative writing, and African American studies. Johns was named to the Root100 in both 2013 and 2014, selected as a member of the Ebony Power 100 in 2015, and received an early career award from Columbia University, Teachers College in 2016. He has also served as an adjunct professor at American University.
As AARP’s Chief Diversity Officer, Edna Kane-Williams has the responsibility for driving AARP’s enterprise Diversity, Equity and Inclusion strategy encompassing our workforce, workplace and marketplace. She leads strategies for multicultural audiences and the age discrimination strategy work, and will also oversee the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Advisory Council and AARP’s Strategic Enterprise Employee Resource Groups (SEERGs). She brings to this position over twenty-five years of experience working in senior management position in both the nonprofit and for profit organizations, with an emphasis on strategic planning, targeted marketing, community outreach, media relations and program development. She has held a variety of other key positions, including as Senior Vice President of Communications and Social Marketing at IQ Solutions, Inc., Senior Vice President at Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, and Senior Vice President of Multicultural Markets at AARP. Edna holds a B.A, from Yale University and an M.A from George Washington University. She is the recipient of a Coro Foundation Fellowship, and was also a Diversity Executive Leadership Program fellow for the American Society of Association Executives. She is currently a member of the Board of Trustees for Legal Counsel for the Elderly and The Center for Responsible Lending. She previously served as a board member of the Black Women’s Health Imperative. She has received numerous career awards, including the Spirit of Democracy Award from the National Coalition of Black Civic Participation, the National Markets Award from the National Association of Black Owned Broadcasters, and the Dorothy Height Humanitarian Award from the Conference of National Black Churches
Dr. Sharoni Denise Little
Dr. Sharoni Denise Little, serves as Head, Global Inclusion Strategy, at Creative Artists Agency where she oversees strategically guide’s the company’s robust set of initiatives to ensure the most enriching, inclusive, and equitable culture to be a catalyst of innovation, creativity, and transformation in the entertainment industry. The CEO, The Strategist Company, LLC, a boutique consultancy and former Vice Dean and Senior Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer/Professor at the USC, Marshall School of Business, Sharoni is an expert in workplace inclusion, equity, and antiracism, mitigating bias, strategic leadership and communication, critical race, and global organizational strategy. A noted author, Sharoni is completing her forthcoming book, The Perpetual Surveillance of Black Men (2021), and has contributed chapters on Michelle Obama and racialized educational disparities. She has been featured in various media outlets, including her two TEDx talks, Storytime: Confronting and Disrupting Marginalizing Narratives (2020), and The Gift of Corrective Lenses (2016), the Financial Times, Marketplace, the Los Angeles Times, ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox News, and PBS. She earned her Ph.D. from Indiana University in Rhetoric and Cultural Studies, an Ed.D. in Administrative Leadership from the USC, Rossier School of Education, and her Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in Organizational Communication and Management from California State University, Los Angeles.
An educational and social advocate, committed to giving back to the community in which she was born and raised, Sharoni serves as a Board Trustee and Vice-Chair at Compton Community College, advocating for educational equity and access, community engagement, and culturally responsive pedagogy and curricula. She is an Inaugural Trustee Fellow (2020-2021) for strategic thought-leaders developed in partnership with the California Community Colleges and the Aspen Institute, College Excellence Program. Sharoni also serves as a Senior Advisor for the City of Compton, Compton Pledge Guaranteed Income program and the Compton, My Brother’s Keeper Initiative. In 2016, she became a Senior Adviser and Evaluator for Fresh Tracks, a youth leadership development partnership between the Aspen Institute’s, Forum for Community Solutions, the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance at The Obama Foundation, and the Children & Nature Network’s Natural Leaders for youth from urban, rural, and tribal communities. Sharoni also served as the founding Chief Operations Officer of the Yetunde Price Resource Center (YPRC), a violence prevention and education community center in Compton, California, established by Serena and Venus Williams, in honor of their sister who was tragically murdered. Sharoni serves the broader community as a LA County Commissioner for the Policy Roundtable for Childcare and Development and sits on several boards.
While she values her professional and community efforts, her most cherished blessing is being the proud mother of her twin sons, Jared and Jaren To whom much is given, much is required, Luke 12:48.
Jen Mahone-Rightler leads Epsilon’s D&I efforts by championing, developing and executing programs that enhance a culture of diversity, inclusion and belonging within the company. She is responsible for implementing sustainable programs to help shape the organization’s training, hiring practices, leadership development and broader corporate social responsibility efforts. Jen is also focused on integrating and aligning the company’s commitment to D&I with the clients and communities Epsilon serves.
Jen brings more than 20 years of experience across diversity & inclusion, talent integration, recruiting, employee engagement and leadership development to Epsilon. Prior to joining Epsilon, Jen led Diversity & Inclusion efforts for Boeing South Carolina where she developed and executed an integrated D&I strategy for 60,000 employees and oversaw 9 business resource groups.
Jen is a visiting facilitator in partnership with the University of South Carolina and a facilitator for Cornell University’s eCornell Certificate Program.
Melody Mitchell joined Barclays in December 2021 as the Americas Head of Talent, Development and Inclusion. In her role, she is responsible for overseeing and ensuring regional deployment of the talent, development and inclusion strategy while in adherence to the regulatory requirements for the US. She brings over 15 years of experience in both financial services and retail where she has held several senior leadership positions supporting both regional and global businesses. Melody has seen proven success in aligning talent solutions to business strategy and implementing scalable change to optimize workforce performance and achieve tangible results for the organization.
Melody has experience in diversity and inclusion, talent management, leadership development and facilitation, employee training, strategic HR business partnering, recruiting, and employee engagement. She is a recognized coach and has additional certifications in various instruments of measurement including personality identification and behavioral methodologies. Melody has a proven track record of coaching executives in the areas of transformational leadership, team building, and change management.
Melody holds a Masters Degree in Human Resource Management from the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations and a BA from Cornell in History, Political Science, Law and Society and Inequality Studies. She is on the Board of Directors at the PACE Lubin School of Business for their Transformational Leadership Program and serves on the Advisory Board for the Harvard Business Review.
William (Bill) Moreno
William (Bill) Moreno is a native Texan and grew up surrounded by a large family in a small South Texas town where his grandfather taught him about the importance ofracial equity and social justice from his own engagement with the American GI Forum in Corpus Christi, Texas, which later became the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC).
His grandfather instilled the importance of a good public education as the path to lift himself, his family, and Latinos across the nation. After graduating from the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, Texas, Bill took a position with U.S. Congressman Rubén Hinojosa where he served in both the Washington, DC and Beeville, TX offices.
For more than six years, Bill served the constituency of the 15th congressional district. During this time, he was elected to serve on his local school board. His advocacy on behalf of the residents of the 15th Congressional District of TX included infrastructure projects, grants to schools and universities, and economic empowerment initiatives. This experience earned Bill admission into the graduate program at the prestigious Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin. Upon graduating, he returned to public education advocacy as a policy analyst with the Texas Association of School Boards in Austin, Texas.
Shortly after, he took an opportunity to gain national experience in the public education arena as a senior policy analyst with the National Education Association. For more than a decade he worked on behalf of NEA’s 3.2 million members to build relationships and partnerships with national Latino leaders and organizations to advance the mission of public education and his grandfather’s dream of lifting up Latinos. He also managed grants to NEA affiliates who strived to bring about racial equity and social justice and to build strong relationships with the Latino communities.
To diversify his skill set and complement his policy and program experience, he studied accounting and is actively working towards earning his Certified Public Accountant (CPA). He was named Vice President for Finance and Operations at Excelencia in Education whose mission is to accelerate Latino student success in higher education. During his tenure, Bill managed budget development, implementation, and evaluation. As well, he managed multi-year grants and contracts to support Excelencia in reaching its mission and reported on the financial activities to the board of directors and finance committee.
Bill continues his issue advocacy through policy, programmatic, and financial management opportunities with national organizations whose mission is to advance a better future for generations to come.
Tanya M. Odom, Ed.M.
Tanya M. Odom, Ed.M., is director of the Equity & Inclusion Program at the Walton Family Foundation. She is a global consultant, writer, coach, and diversity, equity, and inclusion, and civil rights thought leader. She has worked globally for over 20 years, in over 40 countries, as a consultant, coach, storyteller and facilitator focusing on areas including: Diversity and Inclusion, Inclusive Leadership, Race/Racism, Challenging Conversations, Mindfulness, Coaching, Wellbeing, Innovation and Creativity, and Educational Equity.
Tanya’s unique portfolio career has allowed her to work in the education, private sector/corporate, not-for-profit/NGO, law enforcement, and in university/college arenas. She is the co-author of “Evaluation in the Field of Education for Democracy, Human Rights and Tolerance.”
Tanya has been a contributor to the Huffington Post, where she has written about diversity, leadership, self-compassion, and mindfulness. Tanya has also written for cnn.com. Tanya’s work and commentary has also appeared in several publications including Diversity Woman Magazine, Bloomberg News, Fortune, among others. Tanya was named by Diversity Best Practices as “A Diversity Thought Leader to Follow on Twitter.” Entrepreneur Magazine featured Tanya as one of the “3 Women Entrepreneurs Who Unleash Their Energy for the Greater Good.”
As a mindfulness practitioner, Tanya weaves in mindfulness research and practice in her work with individuals and groups and connects it to leadership, teams, intentional inclusion, and the mitigating of unconscious bias. Beginning in 2021, she will be guest faculty at UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center.
Often called an innovator and disrupter, Tanya is featured in a chapter in Dr. Patti Fletcher’s book “Disrupters.”
Tanya was on the faculty of the Human Resources Management program at Georgetown University, where she taught courses in the area of innovation and creativity. She has also taught at Princeton University, in the Junior Summer Institute, and has been an adjunct professor at Manhattanville College, where she taught graduate courses in the areas of Diversity, Leadership, and Team Development.
For the last several years she has been working as a consulting and coaching partner with the United Nations as part of their gender parity by strategy. Tanya has worked with 15 UN entities in 9 different countries focusing on inclusive leadership, unconscious bias, and women in leadership. Over the last several months she has been working with several U.N. entities in their efforts to address racism and create anti-racist action plans and programs.
Over the last four years, Tanya has spent a great deal of time globally facilitating sessions, and moderating panels focused on “Challenging Conversations,” where she has been creating spaces for honest and courageous dialogues focused on sharing, learning and connection.
Tanya is a board member of the Institute for Mindful Leadership and the National Society of High School Scholars Foundation. She is also a national volunteer with the American Heart Association and a committee member of the Presidential Advisory on Structural Racism.
Irma Olguin Jr.
Irma Olguin Jr. is a Central California native that comes from a long-line of fieldworkers. Through a series of serendipitous events and a lot of hard work she was accepted to the University of Toledo and received a full-ride scholarship. In order for Irma to get to college she recycled cans for months to afford the bus ticket that would transport her to Ohio. After graduation she was determined to return home where she could provide similar opportunities to people within her community.
In 2010, Irma created 59DaysOfCode, a competition to challenge the notion that Fresno did not have the talent or infrastructure needed to create a competitive technology hub. This annual software competition is bringing together Valley coders to compete to create websites and mobile apps, as well as develop technological solutions to real-life-problems such as the California’s water crisis. She also co-founded Hashtag, a local coworking space for designers and developers, and Edit LLC, a data solution platform for agricultural businesses.
By 2013, Irma was creating spaces and initiatives for technology where they had never existed locally. However, she didn’t want to stop there. She wanted to help others who might be in the same position she was when she went to college—people just like her who may not have the means to go to college to improve their economic station but plenty of motivation to do so. That year, she co-founded Bitwise Industries, a company whose mission is to uplift people in disadvantaged communities by way of the technology industry. The company provides individuals the skills to enter the tech industry, while also building a place for community, innovation and inclusion. By creating this tech ecosystem, she has been able to serve over 5,000 students, 80% of whom have acquired a tech job.
Rosalyn Taylor O’Neale
Rosalyn Taylor O’Neale has over 46 years of global diversity and inclusion thought leader and practitioner as a Principal Consultant, Cook Ross, Vice President, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer for Campbell Soup Company, Executive Vice President Diversity Initiatives MTV Network, and CEO of Barnes O’Neale & Associates.
An Internationally recognized speaker, Rosalyn has been quoted in Black Enterprise Magazine, Diversity Journal, and Harvard Business Review. She has received recognition as Top 100 Most Influential Blacks In Corporate America, Top Executives In Diversity, 100 Top Executives In America, And 100 Most Influential LGBT People Of The Year, University of Louisville Alumni Fellow.
Rosalyn is the author of three books, 7 Keys 2 Success: Unlocking The Passion For Diversity, The Power of Passion, Courage & Faith, and Kat…Two Societies Where One Drop Was More Than Enough. She will release, 7 Keys 2 Success: A Leader’s Guide to Unlocking Inclusion in early 2022.
She did undergraduate work at Indiana University and received her Master of Science of Social Work from the University of Louisville.
Melonie D. Parker
Melonie Parker is an HR executive committed to innovative, relevant, and contemporary HR leadership. She is an advocate for change and a passionate thought leader. Parker is responsible for advancing Google’s employee engagement strategy across Diversity, Equity & Inclusion. Additionally, Parker serves as a Minority in Energy Initiative Champion for the Department of Energy.
Prior to this role she served as the Vice President of Human Resources & Communications at Sandia National Laboratories. Parker was responsible for the leadership and Labs-wide management of human resources,health, benefits and employee services. She was also responsible for Sandia’s communication efforts, which include planning, strategy, executive communications, media relations, external branding, community affairs and internal communications.
Prior to joining Sandia as the VP of HR and Communications, Parker extends expertise from a career spanning over 17 years in a variety of Lockheed Martin business areas, locations, and progressive leadership roles. During her time at Lockheed Martin, she has held responsibility for employee relations, staffing, EEO/Affirmative Action, diversity programs, compensation, benefits, and K-12 outreach initiatives. Parker received a B.A. in Mass Communications from Hampton University and an M.A. in Human Resources from Villanova University. She was named the 2016 HR Professional of the Year by the New Mexico Society of Human Resource Management. She was recognized with a Special Recognition Award at the 2014 Women of Color STEM Awards, and in 2012 graduated from Lockheed Martin’s Executive Assessment & Development Program.
Anjali Bindra Patel
Anjali Bindra Patel is the Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Winrock International. Anjali is a lawyer and Certified Diversity Executive with over two decades of experience helping clients with legal and human capital needs. Before joining Winrock, Anjali was Co-Founder and CEO of Sweatours, assisting mission-driven companies to incorporate and integrate diversity, inclusion, and wellbeing into their organizational DNA. Anjali has successfully designed and executed uniquely tailored DEI-focused policies, processes, procedures, and programs for leadership and staff by prioritizing relationship building.
Anjali’s book, Humanity at Work, discusses diversity and inclusion with remote workforces and is a #1 Amazon Best Seller.
Anjali has chaired and spoken at dozens of events and conferences, including the 2020 D.C. Bar Association Conference featuring Former Attorney General Eric Holder and the 2019 and 2020 Employee Wellness Summit for Legal Professionals, where she coached attendees on implicit bias and the intersections of inclusion and wellbeing. She has also taken the stage at TEDx, Google Start-Up, Facebook, and many others and served as the Editor at Large for Arianna Huffington/ Thrive Global’s Overcoming Lawyer Burnout.
Nationally, Anjali has been featured by Rebecca Jarvis of ABC News for her innovative efforts to help underrepresented groups and has appeared on several local television and media outlets.
Anjali holds a J.D. from Ohio State University College of Law and a B.A. in Business Management from Kent State University. She also attended Harvard Business School’s Entrepreneurship Essentials Program and is fluent in Hindi.
A Cleveland native, Anjali now lives in Northern Virginia with her military vet husband, three children, and small dog.
Ebonie Riley currently serves as DC Bureau Chief of National Action Network’s Washington, DC Bureau. She is the only woman and the youngest Bureau Chief of any civil rights organization’s Washington Bureau. In this capacity, Ms. Riley serves as a conduit for information about what is happening in the halls of Congress, in the office and administration of the President and in the chamber of the United States Supreme Court. Moreover, she and her team work to educate lawmakers and other stakeholders on the challenges and opportunities facing our communities, by advocating for more resources and policies that help invest and advance economic and social equality in our communities.
The function of the Bureau is to advocate for and influence Federal public policy that reflects the needs and desires of the communities we serve based on the Action Agenda set forth by our national board and senior leadership.
Ebonie’s government affairs portfolio includes criminal justice, telecom policy, diversity and inclusion, federal sentencing reform, ending racial profiling, equal employment protection, access to comprehensive healthcare, immigration, access to quality education, women’s rights, environmental justice, voting rights protection, housing, among other various issues that impact social and economic status, mobility, prosperity and empowerment of urban and underserved communities.
Prior to this role, she served as the Bureau’s Research and Policy Associate, analyzing legislation, drafts advocacy strategies, develops policy recommendations and monitors policy developments related to federal, state and local legislation while co-managing NAN’s Social Media.
As an organizer/activist she has helped organized several events and marches including coordinating/managing NAN’s 2015-2018 National Convention, NAN’s events in Baltimore, MD after the death of Freddie Gray, the Justice For All March in December 2014, NAN’s Legislative & Policy Conferences in 2014-2018, the National Action to Realize the Dream Rally and March in celebration of the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington with over 200,000 people in attendance and Justice For Trayvon 100 City Vigil in Washington, D.C. both in 2013, and the 1,000 Ministers March For Justice where over 3,000 faith leaders marched to recommit their dedication to protecting civil rights in August 2017.
Born in Chicago, Illinois and grew up in Severn, Maryland, Ms. Riley graduated from Ft. Meade Senior High School and attended UMBC (University of Maryland, Baltimore County) where she graduated with Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and minor in History. While at UMBC; she served as President of Africana Studies Council of Majors while sitting on several academic research teams that focused on civil rights, voting rights, political behavior and attitudes, identity politics, race and representation, Congress, and elections. Specific interests include political engagement, civil rights law, voter turnout, voter suppression, and identity group politics.
Dr. Sheila Robinson
DR. SHEILA ROBINSON is a celebrated publisher, author on leadership, inspiring speaker and talent innovation specialist. Her company Diversity Woman Media is recognized nationally as a leading multi-platform enterprise with program offerings that advances all dimensions of diversity and inclusion (D&I).
An expert in diversity and inclusion Dr. Robinson helps leading companies transform their culture to reach gender parity, equity and belonging by combining her first-hand experience climbing the corporate ladder with the highest academic degrees, best practices from her leading magazines, and a deep passion for evidence-based workplace learnings.
During her 14-year career at a Fortune 100 company, Dr. Robinson rose from working on the factory floor to the executive office, ultimately directing communications for a billion division of a global chemical company. Her experiences, including the obstacles she faced as an African-American businesswoman in the South, led her to want to help other business leaders achieve leadership success in their career journey. Over the past two decades Diversity Woman Media has grown to become a multi-faceted company that helps customers drive and deliver business results through diversity, inclusion, and talent development initiatives.
Dr. Robinson is the author of two books: Lead by Example: An Insider’s Look at How to Successfully Lead in Corporate America and Entrepreneurship (2014) and Your Tool Kit for Success: The Professional Woman’s Guide for Advancing to the C-Suite (2017)
She serves with the most influential organizations that are working to foster equity, equality and inclusive workplaces, including: Paradigm for Parity (Advisory Board Member), Catalyst (Strategic Business Partner), Executive Leadership Council (Media Partner), Women’s Business Collaborative (WBC – Chair of Diversity), Twitter (Member, Inclusion Diversity Council), and Simmons College Institute for Inclusive Leadership (Board of Advisors).
She holds certificates from Stanford University’s Professional Publishing Program (2007), Wharton’s School of Business Chief Learning Officer Program (2013) and Cornell University’s Diversity and Inclusion Program (2019). In 2017 she became a Certified Executive Coach and member of the International Coach Federation, the world’s largest community of professionally trained coaches and is an advisor to CEO’s and CHRO’s.
Dr. Robinson earned both a Masters of Education and a Doctorate of Education from the University of Pennsylvania.
Wayne Townsend is the Chief Strategic Growth Officer at Epsilon. He leads a team that combines data, predictive analytics, innovative creative and best-in-class technology to deliver digital marketing solutions that drive dramatic, measurable results for our clients.
Wayne returned to Epsilon in 2014 after being away for nearly two decades—a time during which he had leadership roles at several software and service providers and delivered data-driven, cross-channel marketing solutions for hundreds of Fortune 1000 clients. When not immersed in the digital world, he enjoys watching my kids compete in crew, soccer, track and swimming and also playing a bit of golf and tennis.
Wayne earned his MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Dayton and BS in Mechanical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Brenda Velasquez Wagner
Brenda Velasquez Wagner is known as a solutions oriented, strategic leader, who brings a breath of cross-functional HR experiences to apply to business solutions. Brenda currently leads Diversity and Inclusion strategies at LabCorp, as the Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer. In addition to this important mission, Brenda also is leading HR transformation and integration efforts across the LabCorp brands, which includes Covance. LabCorp operates one of the largest clinical laboratory networks in the world, with over 65,000 people globally.
Most recently, Brenda served as Chief People and Culture Officer, Professional Services for Grant Thornton LLP, the U.S. member firm of Grant Thornton International Ltd, one of the world’s leading independent audit, tax, and advisory firms with more than 8,000 employees and billion in revenues. In that role, Brenda reported to the CEO with visibility to the partnership board and responsibility for 250 human resources professionals, including analytics, capacity and resource management, talent acquisition, learning and development, leadership development, culture and diversity, HR generalists, and employee relations.
Prior to that, she was Human Resources Senior Vice President, R&D Solutions for IQVIA, in Raleigh, NC. Formerly known as Quintiles and IMS Health Inc., it is an American multinational company with B in revenue that serves the combined industries of health information technology and clinical research. There, she was responsible for human resources for the firm’s largest business unit with billion in revenue and 27,000 global employees. She also served as Human Resources Vice President of IQVIA’s Global Talent and its Global Total Rewards team.
She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey in 1991, where she also received a Master of Science in Human Resource Management. University.
Dr. Deborah Ashton
Dr. Deborah Ashton is the President of Planet Perspective and the Founder of Equity Rising, promoting inclusion, social justice, and a bias-free work environment. She is a DEI strategist and consultant with 30+ years of cross-industry experience. Dr. Ashton serves as the Advisory Committee Board Member for Mill Road Progressive Governance Fund, Mill Road Capital. She headed diversity and inclusion for Medtronic, Darden Restaurants, Harley-Davidson, Novant Health and Argonne National Laboratory. Dr. Ashton has presented to and advised Boards on DEI. She is the former Chief of Test Development and Validation for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Dr. Ashton, a licensed psychologist, received her doctorate from Harvard University and studied with Dr. Chester ‘Chet’ Pierce, who coined the term “microaggression”.
Mentor Circle Topic: Creating a Culture of Belonging
LaSonya Berry is an HR thought leader and CEO of McPherson|Berry – an industry award winning firm that provides HR consulting services, leadership development, drive diversity, equity & inclusion initiatives, and capacity building solutions to grow organizations. LaSonya has been a leader in human resources, author, and speaker that helps businesses and individuals achieve their full potential by increasing sustainability, driving operational excellence, minimizing risks, and building leaders for over 18 years. McPherson|Berry made the exclusive HR industry Leadership 500 Excellence Award for programs specifically for diversity and STEM. She frequently writes human resources content and publications, featured in the New York Times, a sought-after national speaker, and works with executives. LaSonya has authored several books including “101 Power Tips for the Workplace” and the “CEO Strategy Planner” for business owners and executives.
Mentor Circle Topic: The Future of Work: Creating an Environment That Effectively Develops Diverse Talent
Dr. Tonia Burgess
Dr. Tonia Burgess is a native of Sacramento, California. She earned her Doctorate in Education, with an emphasis on transformational leadership and change. Additionally, she holds an MBA with a concentration in Organizational Leadership. Dr. Burgess has worked for the state of California for over 33-years and currently serves as a Technical Advisor with a state department. Mentor Circle Topic: Intersectionality at The Cross-Roads of Race, Gender, Class, Ability, Ethnicity and Other Dimensions of Diversity
Sandra Cano is an accomplished Executive Talent Acquisition professional with 25 years of domestic and global experience in Fortune 500, private sector, and start-ups. Sandra brings unique experience driving global business transformation by building diverse teams, delivering solutions in Talent Attraction, Engagement Strategies, Succession Planning and Talent Incubation.
Sandra joined Visa Inc.(V) in January of 2018. In addition to Executive recruiting, she has led diversity and Inclusion initiatives, served as leader for the Affinity groups and has a deep passion for developing and retaining underrepresented minorities in technology. She came to Visa Inc. from GE (GE) where she helped build the GE Digital Executive team and managed the Technical Executive Recruiting function for three business organizations in North America and Latin America. Prior to GE, she worked at Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) and owned her own recruiting business focused on servicing emerging technology start-up companies.
Born and raised in Mexico City, Sandra holds a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Relations and Human Resources Certificate from Universidad Iberoamericana. A Post Graduate Degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson & Wales University. A Diversity & Inclusion Certification from Cornell University. Corporate Board Readiness Training by “How Women Lead- Non-Profit Organization”. Outside of work, you can find Sandra traveling around the world with her husband and son, Zumba dancing, and cooking.
Beth Csengody is Vice President, Diverse Client Segment Leader: Women’s Segment Wells Fargo Advisors .As a Diverse Client Segment Leader, Beth Csengody works directly with financial advisors with a key business focus in the women’s segment. Ms. Csengody is responsible for providing guidance and strategic direction for advisors looking to prospect or deepen relationships with existing female clients, as well as for managers who hope to grow and retain the female FA population in their branches. The Diverse Client Segments team within Client Experience & Growth is focused on increasing diverse representation and inclusion of advisors and team members while also creating robust client engagement opportunities across all diverse segments. Before joining Wells Fargo Advisors, she held a number of strategy roles on both the agency and client side, including HLK, a digital agency with offices in St. Louis and Denver, and the St. Louis Blues Hockey Club. She earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and holds her Series 7 and 24 licenses. A California native, she and her husband Andy live in St. Louis with their children, including a rescue mutt named Chester Copperpot.
Mentor Circle Topic: Establishing the Business Case for DEI
Dr. Amy Dufrane
Dr. Amy Dufrane’s vision created HRCI – an innovative learning organization to meet new career, business, and workforce demands. As Chief Executive Officer, she recognizes that constantly shifting technologies, laws, and workplace environments requires diverse knowledge, skills, and experience. Collectively, these factors have disrupted businesses and created opportunities for HR to develop strategies that encompass broader learning as a critical ingredient to drive successful businesses. Dufrane holds a doctorate from The George Washington University, an MBA and MA from Marymount University, and a BS from Hood College. She is certified by HRCI as a Senior Professional in Human Resources® (SPHR® ). She also has a Certified Association Executive (CAE) credential from the American Society of Association Executives, The Center for Association Leadership. Dufrane is on the Advisory Board of Certree and a Board Member for The Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind and HR Leadership Forum.
Mentor Circle Topic: HR’s role in supporting DEI
Dr. Leigh-Anne Francis
Dr. Leigh-Anne Francis is an Associate Professor with a dual appointment in the departments of African American Studies and Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ). Leigh-Anne holds a Ph.D. in United States and African American History, an M.A. in U.S. and World History, and a B.F.A. in Painting and Illustration. Her recent peer-reviewed publications appear in the Journal of Women’s History, Meridians: feminism, race, transnationalism and more. Her unpublished book manuscript, titled “Jane Crow (In)Justice: Race, Crime, and Punishment in New York State, 1893—1916,” analyzes the intersections of sexism, racism, poverty, crime and work and situates Black women in the history of mass incarceration. When Leigh-Anne is not teaching or writing, she is parenting her seven-year old twin sons, Rustin and Langston.
Katherine Giscombe has a Ph.D. in Organizational Psychology from the University of Michigan, and over 20 years experience in research and consulting. She directed a groundbreaking research series on race and gender in the workplace sponsored by the Ford Foundation and the non-profit organization Catalyst, and is a member of the Experts of Color, a multi-disciplinary consortium focused on closing the racial wealth gap in the USA. A frequent contributor to academic conferences, she has published on racism, positive organizational scholarship, and how organizations can better support under-represented groups. She is the founder of Giscombe & Associates, a firm focused on inclusion in the workplace.
Mentor Circle Topic: What does Equity Mean for My Organization?
Andrea Grant Small, large and mid-size national, multi-national and global organizations, across all industries, trust Andrea to consult them on complex business issues impacting workforce requirements. As a true partner, she listens to and assesses the needs of her clients and provides strategic advice on opportunities to improve efficiency and performance, increase revenue, drive inclusivity and lower costs. Her counsel enables her clients to identify the best human capital solutions to achieve their business goals, while creating a value proposition that appeals to employees across all generations.
Her experience gives her unique insights into trends, challenges and best practices for developing employees at all levels for current and future roles and expediting connections to jobs.
She unapologetically champions diversity, inclusion, race and equitable strategies and tactics ensuring every workplace is transparent, fair and inclusive. She’s a servant leader with a heart and mind for the people she has the privilege of working with and for. As a serial entrepreneur that has successfully integrated work and life as a special-needs mom she’s here to serve you.
Mentor Circle Topic: Including People with Disabilities in Your D&I Efforts, Planning for Diverse and Inclusive Hiring, and Inclusive Leadership: Managing More Effectively in Today’s Workforce
Aleta Howell currently leads Global Inclusive Recruiting and Business Strategy for Cisco Systems. In this role she is responsible for aligning corporate and functional diversity, equity and inclusion strategies and creating internal and external programs and initiatives that drive diverse and inclusive hiring.
Prior to her current role, Aleta led Inclusive Recruiting Strategy for University recruiting, where she worked with leaders and HR Partners to drive hiring strategies and program development to attract diverse university talent. She also served as a Program Manager with Cisco’s Office of Inclusion and Collaboration where she helped to create new processes to drive diversity metrics review discussions with senior leaders.
Aleta is an alumnus of NC State University where she earned a BA in Economics and Business Management. She also earned an MBA from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at UNC Chapel Hill. Aleta resides in Raleigh, NC with her husband Kevin. She is the mother of two college-aged daughters. In her spare time she loves to sing, cook, write and travel.
Mentor Circle Topic: Strategies to Enhance Inclusive Recruiting
Tori D Lenton
Tori D Lenton is a Certified and highly seasoned DEI Career Strategist, Workforce & Talent Champion, Workshop Facilitator and one who has worked to impact change in creating safe Diversity and Inclusion spaces. Having built a solid reputation of her own through over 15 years of passionately helping her clients thrive in fields like leadership, politics, executive management, tech, healthcare, among others, she has developed a unique and tailored coaching approach, where she creates a comfortable environment of authenticity and unfiltered communication, to fully understand the human beings behind the job position, identify their strengths, and help them build a life and a career that enhances their yet untapped potential, so they can achieve not only professional success, but also personal happiness. But her experience is not only limited to the corporate world, she has additionally built curriculums and career path plans while working in the Middle/High School sector and Higher Ed. She also serves as the Director of DEI Workforce programs for a Non-Profit where she bridges the gaps for Minorities on their career journey.
Mentor Circle Topic: How Do We Engage Allies?
Camille McKinney is a Leadership Coach, consultant and speaker at Leveraged Leaders; she helps women leaders design and express their unique leadership brand so they can up-level their results and achieve what they REALLY, REALLY want. Camille brings her experience in leadership, Emotional Intelligence, performance consulting and training to support leaders in revealing your personal leadership advantage, both in business and in life. In Camille’s experience, coaching quickly reveals is that it’s less about what you need to DO differently, and more about how you are showing up, driven by limiting beliefs that get in the way of you showing up INTENTIONALLY.
Mentor Circle Topic: Establishing and Growing Employee Resource Groups
Errika Moore is the inaugural Executive Director for the national STEM Funders Network. Previously she was the Senior Program Officer at the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta leading the team focused on creating equity in education and workforce development. Prior to this she served as the Executive Director of TAG-Ed (Technology Association of Georgia Education Collaborative) focused on K-12 STEM Advocacy throughout the state of Georgia, Vice President of Member Services and External Affairs for IT Senior Management Forum (ITSMF) – the only national organization focused on increasing the representation of black professionals at senior levels in technology, the Vice President of Operations for the Gifted Education Foundation, Southwire, BMC Software and IBM.
Currently she serves the community as the co-lead for the state of Georgia for the National Million Women Mentors initiative, the Board Chair for Ferst Readers and the incoming Chair for Lab Atlanta. She also serves on the National Science Foundation’s Convergence Accelerator Program specifically for Reimagining Innovation in STEM Education, the Georgia Department of Education Computer Science Advisory Council, the Tech for All Alliance Advisory Board, the Literacy for All Steering Committee, Junior Achievement of Georgia Leadership Council, Georgia’s CTAE Industry Advisory Council, Atlanta Technical College’s Industrial Engineering/Systems Technology Advisory Committee, the Leading Women @ Tech (Georgia Tech) Professional Development Advisory Board, and the Inspiredu Education Advisory Council. She is a member of IT Senior Management Forum, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. and the Atlanta Diversity Managers Affinity Group (ADMAG).
Mentor Circle Topic: What Have We Accomplished? Best Practices in Community & Social Responsibility a Year Since the Death of George Floyd
Marguerite Orane is committed to changing the way we live and work so that we do so with joy. She coaches leaders in realizing the benefits that joy at work brings to people and profits. Her clients value her insights on leadership, strategy and personal growth delivered in her own exuberant, joy-filled way as a speaker, coach, facilitator and author. Her experience as an entrepreneur, her Harvard MBA, daily practice of mindfulness meditation and her curiosity about the mysteries and delights of the world are the foundation of her work.
Mentor Circle Topic: Self-Care: Managing the Heavy Load that DEI Practitioners Carry
Dr. Blair K. Robinson-Price
Dr. Blair K. Robinson-Price is an author, leadership development trainer, speaker, and coach. She has a passion for inspiring people to unlock their potential and reignite their Why by encouraging innovation, commitment, and passion. Her straight-forward nature encourages authentic and energizing conversations that challenge people to identify their inner strengths and abilities and foster the confidence to realize their full potential. Dr. Blair is the CEO of Strategize for Success, LLC. She is a sought-after coach, trainer, and speaker. She has taught on various topics for seminars, workshops, and retreats. As a certified John Maxwell Coach, Teacher, and Speaker, Dr. Blair offers workshops, seminars, keynote speaking, and training aiding her clients’ personal and professional growth through application of proven leadership methods. Dr. Blair is trained and certified in a variety of assessment tools including MBTI®, FIRO®, and John Maxwell DISC. As an executive coach, she works with entry level, mid-level, and senior level leaders and executives to enhance their leadership skills while helping them to identify areas of strengths which encourage them to become more self-aware and effective leaders.
Mentor Circle Topic: Understanding and Managing Unconscious Bias
Luciana Scrutchen, Assistant Professor of Fashion, is the Associate Dean of Parsons School of Fashion and has twenty years of service at The New School University. Ms. Scrutchen received her MFA in Design & Technology from Parsons School of Design and BFA in Weaving & Textiles from Rochester Institute of Technology. She has been invited to teach master classes in Miami, Portugal, and the Dominican Republic, as well as guest lecturing in Hangzhou and Nanjing, China. Her professional career as a textile designer and technology instructor has included working with clientele from many notable fashion brands. Ms. Scrutchen has participated in a number of peer-reviewed publications and presentations, including: “Textiles as Art, Culture, and Science: Discovery of the Ephemeral and Perennial Imprints Through Modeled Ecosystems” for the Anywhere Elsewhere on-line Journal; “The Fickleness of Interweaving Digital and Studio Practice” for DEL Conference in London; and co-presenter with her colleague, Katayoun Chamay of The New School, with “Engaging with Earth’s Palettes: Painting with Microbes” at the Shibori Symposium in Oaxaca, Mexico.
Mentor Circle Topic: Planning for Diverse and Inclusive Hiring
Jade Singleton has spent more than a decade leading impactful communications, people and leadership strategies at the nation’s top non-profit and investment banking firms. Her flagship company Johnson Squared, LLC , creates and leads forward-leaning corporate DEIB conversations, employee experiences, policies and paths to equity. Jade’s published thesis “African-American Communication in the Corporate Environment” has been leveraged and cited by academics and DEIB professionals at all stages of DEIB learning and practice.
Mentor Circle Topic: Creating Psychologically Safe Work Environments
Jewlana Smith-Hunter, Ed.S.
As an nationally recognized expert on equity, leadership, curriculum, instruction, teaching and learning of diverse students K12, Jewlana helps schools deliver on the promise and potential that all students can learn and perform at high levels, including diverse subgroups. She’s a one-category-of-one calm force who’s taken her expertise national to train teachers and leaders to create equitable ecosystems in schools that produce success for staff and students. Looking for a speaker that understands how to connect, inform, challenge the status quo and inspire change by way of effective action? Then look no further than Jewlana, the equity elevator.
Sheryl Sullivan is the founding partner and lead consultant at Fostering Diversity & Inclusion.
In her career, Sheryl gained valuable experience leading diversity & inclusion for a Fortune 100 company as well as leading large and small teams as an HR business partner, global learning leader and other HR roles. Driving diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives created a passion for DEI and the value of inclusion and belonging to an organization. Across all of her roles she has honed her ability to coach, assess business needs, and challenge business leaders to drive the right diversity, equity and inclusion actions for organizations and teams. Sheryl holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the Webster University, and Bachelors and Masters in Education from the University of Arkansas.
Mentor Circle Topic: Inclusive Leadership: Managing More Effectively in Today’s Workplace
Leading NOW’s Chief Commercial Office Gretchen Sussman is Leading NOW’s Chief Commercial Officer, responsible for developing and implementing the commercial strategies for Leading NOW and its divisions Leading Women, Leading Forward, Gender Dynamics Institute and the Center of Diversity & Inclusion. Gretchen honed her keen business sense through diverse career positions spanning 30 years, gaining all-encompassing experience in strategy creation & deployment, revenue optimization, leadership development, and change management. A bona fide change agent, Gretchen spent decades developing high-performing teams, successfully leading transformations, and delivering exceptional results across multiple business sectors and industries. She is a skilled facilitator and requested speaker on the topics of gender equity, DEI, and leadership.
Mentor Circle Topic: Measuring the Success of Your DEI Strategy
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