Equal and Equitable are not the same:
- Why DEI MUST be segmented, paced and sequenced
- How systems, staffing, cultural norms, compensation methodology, job structures and evaluation processes should all be examined for presumed prejudice and bias and then recast with the goal of assuring greater hiring and retention
- How the browning of America and the realities around the “available” workforce after 2045 make a new “macro-economic” case for racial equity in the workplace
- Why this work requires a thorough understanding of your individual, corporate and communal beliefs, already in place that thwart success.
Labor Attorney | CHRO| Racial Equity Strategist | Federal Reserve Executive
Nikki Lanier is an experienced executive with over 25 years of career achievements that span Human Resources, Labor and Employment Law, Collective Bargaining, Central Banking, and State Government, she is an author, a sought after keynote speaker, and has received many awards and recognitions for her expertise and leadership in talent development, HR innovation, community development, DEI, and economic equity.
Nikki spent eighteen (18) years as an HR leader and employment attorney. She has worked in more than ten (10) sectors including manufacturing, consulting, consumer goods, health care, media, law, government, higher education, and central banking, and has led organizations in both the public and private sectors. She has served as an HR Executive with Philip Morris USA (VA) and Georgia-Pacific Corp (GA), CHRO for Charter Schools USA (FL), Maricopa Community Colleges (AZ), and served as Personnel Cabinet Secretary for the Commonwealth of Kentucky (youngest and first black female appointee). In these roles, she drove accelerated cultural change, created and implemented innovative organizational development, and focused on strategic planning, employee relations, community engagements and partnerships, training and development, succession planning, recruitment and retention, and labor negotiations.
Nikki is deeply involved in the community and has served on more than 25 nonprofit boards, commissions, and civic committees. Through her work and strong local and national board memberships, she is widely recognized as an accomplished thought leader and compelling keynote and plenary speaker on topics related to progressive HR strategies, transformational leadership, organizational effectiveness, community and economic development, economic education, and advancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and anti-racism, corporately and civically. As SVP and Regional Executive with the Federal Reserve, Nikki leads all branch activities to include conducting regional economic research and gathering monetary policy input from business leaders across Kentucky and Indiana, promoting financial stability for low- and moderate-income communities and individuals, and providing economic education. Nikki also serves on the bank’s management committee helping to oversee the overall strategic direction for the Federal Reserve Bank.
Nikki earned a Juris Doctor from the University of Miami School of Law, a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Hampton University and holds a certification in Collective Bargaining from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations. She has served as an adjunct MBA professor for the University of Louisville College of Business since 2018, where she also serves on its Board of Advisors.
Since the social unrest in 2020, there has been a resurgence in interest, focus and activity related to DE&I objectives and efforts. Black professionals are “trending hot” right now, and we should be diligent and expedient to take full advantage of our opportunities at this time. If history is a predictor, we will not stay as “hot” forever…a cool down is inevitable.
Dr. Theoria Cason-Speaker
Dr. Theoria M. Cason is a corporate DEI practitioner, educator, and entrepreneur. In her role as the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Manager at Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation, she is responsible for the development and integration of Gulfstream’s global DEI strategy, which aims to hire and develop diverse talent, foster an inclusive work environment and ensure management accountability. Since she joined the company in February, Dr. Cason has facilitated unconscious bias training for more than 450 company leaders and developed diversity and inclusion metrics for the leadership development training curricula. Additionally, she managed the launch of Gulfstream’s first employee resource group for African American and Black employees and established a framework of policy and practices to systematize the expansion of future employee resource groups. Concurrent with her responsibilities at Gulfstream, she also serves as an E-Cornell Facilitator for the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Certificate program, and is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of her consulting firm, Theoria In Praxis, Inc.
Prior to her role at Gulfstream, Dr. Cason served as the inaugural Sr. Training and Education Consultant for the Office of Institutional Equity and Title IX at Cornell University. In this role, she created training and educational initiatives that focused on the prevention of sexual and related misconduct through the application of laws and policies that govern the institutional response to prohibited bias, discrimination, and harassment.
She holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, a master’s degree in College Student Personnel from Western Illinois University, and a Doctorate of Education in Higher Education Management from the University of Pittsburgh.
Bryony Bouyer is a seasoned executive with demonstrated leadership and revenue-building experience in a $6.5B+ publicly traded consumer products and entertainment company. Her brand building, licensing and promotional experience has been recognized by multiple sources including Women In Toy (WIT) and the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth where she recently received an Honorary Doctorate.
Ms. Bouyer currently leads Hasbro’s Global Diversity and Inclusion initiatives to foster a more diverse workforce while ensuring that the company derives incremental growth from the Multi-cultural consumer. Since assuming this position in late 2018, Ms. Bouyer has led the execution of the company’s first-ever performance-based diversity and inclusion goals in order to cultivate a successful and sustainable business for the future.
Ms. Bouyer began her Hasbro career in 1995, serving in a variety of roles in both the Global Brand and Global Consumer Products team. Responsible for developing & driving the global licensing strategy for all of Hasbro’s iconic brands, Ms. Bouyer leveraged her negotiation, sales, marketing, creative and operational skills to successfully expand the company’s iconic brands, into key consumer products categories. From taking the MY LITTLE PONY brand into more 70 than countries and across all major consumer products and promotional categories, to growing the TRANSFORMERS consumer products portfolio to deliver over $12 billion in retail sales since 2014; Ms. Bouyer has played an integral role in strategically advancing Hasbro’s successful consumer products division via the licensing mechanism.
Ms. Bouyer currently serves on the board of the Charlton College of Business at the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth. She also serves as a Trustee for the Community College of Rhode Island. Ms. Bouyer is a member of the Toy Association’s Diversity Committee and an active member of the Women In Toy (WIT) organization.
Ms. Bouyer received her BS in marketing and Honorary Doctorate degrees from the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth and her MBA from Bryant University.
Mr. Callender serves clients in a variety of industries across the Americas, Europe, and Asia. He works with clients’ executive teams to develop diversity and inclusion strategies that align with their talent management and organization strategies.
A seasoned trainer and facilitator, he supports his clients’ talent management objectives through innovative program design and delivery on topics including leadership, diversity and inclusion, high-performing teams, and cultural awareness. Participants emerge with skills and tools that enable them to drive higher levels of performance, teamwork, and innovation.
Prior to joining Korn Ferry, Mr. Callender managed a variety of operations and staff functions within United Parcel Service including the corporate office’s training and development function.
After the killing of George Floyd, and the social injustice demonstrations in 2020, there has been a surge in diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, programs and hirings. This renewed and expanded interest has some asking what outcomes will be different with this renewed interest and focus and are their valid reasons to expect substantive and measurable progress.
James Fripp is the Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer of Yum! Brands. In this role, Fripp, working with executives across Yum! Brands, KFC, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, and The Habit Burger Grill, has global responsibility for advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies and practices across the company’s brands, workplaces and franchise system. Building on Yum! Brands’ years of progress on its equity and inclusion journey, Fripp is focused on increasing diverse representation among company leadership, franchisees, and suppliers and continuing the rollout of inclusive leadership and anti-racism training across the company and franchise system.
Since 2011, Fripp has led equity and inclusion efforts, where he elevated Yum! Brands’ public commitments and partnerships including the CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion, The Consortium for Graduate Study in Management, ONETEN and We Are All Human’s The Hispanic Promise; activated the company’s Employee Resource Groups; and trained thousands of brand and franchise leaders around the world on the topics of Inclusive Leadership and Unconscious Bias.