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Diversity Professionals Group

The Commission's Diversity Professionals Group (DPG) is composed of senior-level staff from Commission-member organizations responsible for developing and implementing diversity management goals and initiatives within their organizations. 

The group holds forums for constructive problem-solving, the sharing of best practices, and networking and participating in educational programs about diversity and inclusion issues.

The Commission's partnership with DiversityInc, the leading national resource for research, best practices and information about successfully implementing and sustaining diversity management strategies in the workplace, provides DPG members with free or discounted access to a variety of national programs and speakers.

To learn more about how the Commission's Diversity Professionals Group can help your company or organization develop and/or implement strategic diversity management initiatives, please email us at or call 216.592.2213.

2017 forums and conference schedule

  • Thursday, May 25: 7:30 to 10 a.m., GCP Offices, 1240 Huron Road East in Playhouse Square

  • August: Full-day conference, date, time and place TBD

  • November 14: 7:30 to 10 a.m., Squire Patton Boggs, 127 Public Square, Suite 4900, Cleveland, OH 44114

Highlights from the Commission’s 2016 annual conference

The Commission on Economic Inclusion’s Eighth Annual Conference, held Aug. 17, 2016, at LaCentre Banquet and Conference Facility, took a deep dive into the hot topic of hidden bias in the workplace, exploring how it compromises decision-making and how to mitigate its effect.

More than 200 diversity and HR professionals heard from morning keynote Harvard professor and author Mahzarin Banaji (top photo left), discuss how well-intentioned people behave in ways that deviate from their own intentions and how this behavior impacts business decisions.

Luncheon keynote Diana Cruz Solash (top photo right), director of global diversity and inclusiveness for EY, helps member firms leverage the diversity that each person brings to the organization. She discussed what EY is doing to interrupt bias.

In addition, presenters from Commission-member organizations led these afternoon breakout sessions:

“Mitigating Unconscious Bias: Effective Training and Practices”

  • George Sample, Senior Human Resource Manager, Talent Acquisition and Workforce Planning, Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District
  • Erica Merritt, Director of Culture and Strategy, Cleveland Metropolitan School District
Download the presentation.

“Implicit Bias in Talent Decisions”
  • Gina Camiola. Manager, Talent Programs, Eaton
  • Donna Skurzak, Director, Diversity & Inclusion, Cleveland Clinic
Download the presentation.

“Bias: Effect on Supplier Diversity: Effective Training and Practices”
  • Joe McClain, Manager, Supplier Diversity, Eaton
  • Gloria Ware, Principal, Inclusion, JumpStart Inc.
Download the presentation.

Highlights from the 2015 conference

Sandy Harris, vice president, corporate diversity strategy and internal relations at Sodexo, was the keynote speaker at the Commission on Economic Inclusion’s seventh annual conference, "Aligning Inclusion with Business and Talent Outcomes." held Wednesday, August 5, 2015, at Corporate College East. Sodexo has ranked in the top five of DiversityInc’s Top 50 Companies for Diversity for the past six years.

Featured speakers were Ralph Moore, president, Ralph G. Moore & Associates, and Janet B. Reid, Ph.D., CEO, BRBS World, LLC and managing partner, Lemand Kyver Consulting.

Above photos left to right: Sandy Harris, Ralph Moore and Janet Reid.

Presentations from the 2014 DPG conference

Some presentations from the 2014 Diversity Professionals Conference are available for download.

  • Keynote speaker Julie Hansen, director, corporate diversity & inclusion, AbbVie, a global, research-based bio-pharmaceutical company named to the 2014 DiversityInc Top 50

Previous programs

November 20, 2013: Hosted by Cleveland State University, the program featured Dani Monroe, chief executive officer of CenterFocus International, who discussed her new book, "Untapped Talent: Unleashing the Power of the Hidden Workforce."

August 20, 2013: Diversity Professionals Annual Conference, "Economic Inclusion as a Competitive Edge," at Corporate College East. Click here for an event summary. Download these conference presentations:

May 16, 2013: "Meaningful Inclusion: The View from the C-Suite," a conversation with: Gordon Bowen, chief executive officer, Lifebanc; Jerry Kelsheimer, affiliate president, Fifth Third Bank, Northeastern Ohio; and Steve Standley, chief administrative officer, University Hospitals. Moderated by Commission Co-chair Eddie Taylor, president, Taylor Oswald; hosted by the Cleveland Museum of Art.

February 20, 2013: Hosted by C. J. Harkness, director of campus diversity affairs, Baldwin-Wallace University. Focus group for the Commission's Decade 2 Study.

Join DPG

To learn more about how the Commission's Diversity Professionals Group can help your company or organization develop and/or implement strategic diversity management initiatives, please email us at or call 216.592.2213.