DEIAB: An $8 Billion Industry
Play • 1 hr 32 min

In this episode of the Demystifying Diversity Podcast, host Daralyse Lyons explores diversity, equity, inclusion, accessibility and belonging (DEIAB) as an industry. She delves into the ways in which DEIAB initiatives have shaped and been shaped by various business needs and consumer demands, especially following the racial reckoning that took place following the murder of George Floyd, during the upsurge of BLM protests and visibility. Her guests speak openly about the ways in which DEIAB training and compliance are being used and misused in the modern workplace.

In this episode, you will learn about:

* How workplace inclusivity can include non-obvious identifiers such as education level, and how these layers of intersectionality create challenges in creating inclusion.

* The challenges posed when attempting to make companies more inclusive.

* The role that employee resource groups (ERGs) play in promoting inclusive work environments.

* The difference between actual and performative allyship in the workplace.

* How DEIAB training during a specified month (Black History, Pride, etc.) is not enough and sends the wrong message to employees identifying within these groups.

* Why it is incumbent upon an organization's leadership to set the tone and example for what diversity and inclusion looks like in the workplace, including representation amongst senior executives.

Our guests experts this episode include:

Tomar Pierson-Brown -Tomar is the Associate Dean for Equity and Inclusive Excellence and a Clinical Associate Professor of Law at University of Pittsburgh School of Law. She's also the director of the Health Law Clinic, which operates as a medical legal partnership with UPMC Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh.

Leora Eisenstadt - Leora is an associate professor in the Department of Legal Studies, a Murray Schusterman Research Fellow, and the Director of the Center for Ethics Diversity and Workplace Culture, CEDWC. Leora is also an assistant producer and consultant for the Demystifying Diversity Podcast.

Natalie Pederson - Natalite is an associate professor of legal studies at Drexel University's LeBow College of Business, Vice President of the Employment Law Section of the Academy of Legal Studies in Business and the Secretary of the Mid-Atlantic Academy of Legal Studies in Business.

Lily Zheng - Lily is a diversity, equity and inclusion strategist and consultant, and the author of three books, the most recent of which is DEI Deconstructed: Your No Nonsense Guide to Doing the Work and Doing It Right. Lily works with organizations around the world to create the equitable, inclusive, and just organizations of the future.

Juan Otero - Juan serves as Senior Vice President of Diversity, equity and inclusion for Comcast Corporation, where he oversees operational management of the company's D, E and I efforts across the corporate enterprise. He previously served as Vice President for Comcast Corporation's federal government affairs team, where he was responsible for federal legislative advocacy with members of Congress and the administration. In addition, he sits on several national nonprofit boards, including Easter Seals, the Hispanic Federation, and the Smithsonians Latino Center.

Kelli Clark - Kelli is Chief Culture Officer at Aon United. She directs the firm strategies for inclusive People, leadership and culture initiatives, and she played a pivotal role in scaling Aon's signature cultural workshop Leading Aon United to reach more than 8,000 colleagues virtually while maintaining more than 98% positive feedback.

Alida Miranda Wolf - Alida is the author of Cultures of Belonging, Building Inclusive Organizations that Last and CEO and Founder of Ethos, a Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging firm dedicated to closing the opportunity gap for underrepresented and underserved groups.

LaTonya Wilkins - LaTonya is the founder of the Change Coaches, LLC, an organization dedicated to creating revolutionary leadership development, culture change, and extraordinary personal growth. And the author of Leading Below the Surface, How to Build Real and Psychologically Safe Relationships with People Who are Different from You. LaTonya seeks to reduce the opportunity gap by focusing on cultivating what she describes as below the surface leadership. And she told me that the presence of caring, compassionate leadership is what enables people to thrive, whereas the absence of it does the opposite.

Skye Kowaleski - Skye is a writer, director, facilitator, speaker, consultant, and therapeutic breathwork practitioner who uses a multidisciplinary approach to cultivate internal awareness while simultaneously building their capacity for constructive communication with others.

James Barnes - James is a corporate trainer, coach, and public speaker whose own transition has equipped him to teach companies, schools, hospitals, and other organizations to create safe, uplifting, and empowering environments for LGBTQ+ individuals. In his work, James places a special emphasis on serving transgender adults and youth, something that enables him to show up as his authentic self as a trainer, facilitator, speaker, and coach, and he's found that his capacity to reach people is only possible because of his investment in authenticity.

Amanda Arias - Amanda is the Director of People and Culture at Jubilee Media. Prior to her current position, she accumulated more than 10 years of experience helping growth-centric startups build high performing teams, and in her work she operates from the motto, treat people like people. Amanda shared an example of how the growth mindset at Jubilee fosters an environment that enables people to realize their potential while also enabling the company to benefit from employee growth and development.

AC Fowlkes - AC is the Executive Director of Fowlkes Consulting an LGBTQ+ sensitivity and transgender inclusion consulting firm. AC also works as the director of a psychiatric care clinic, and is a Top Voice on LinkedIn.

Armando X Estrada - Armando, who everyone calls AXE, is an associate professor in the Department of Policy, organizational and Leadership Studies at Temple University. He previously served as a program manager and senior research psychologist with the Foundational Science Research Unit of the United States Army Research Institute for the Behavioral and Social Sciences. Prior to that, he served in the US Marine Corp from 1987 to 1995, and AXE continues to be actively involved in the Society for Military Psychology.

Joyce Jelks - known personally and professionally as JJ, Joyce is the head of people and Culture at Wieden and Kennedy, New York, an Army major. The Chief founding Member, relationship Engagement Manager for Sean Johnson and founder of Ottawa Park HR Advisory. JJ owns her own consulting company and works in-house to cultivate a culture of belonging at Wieden and Kennedy, New York.

Tanner Gers - Tanner is the President and Founder of Accessibility Officer, a data-driven disability inclusion firm that helps companies drive Ability, D & I, and maximize ROI. Tanner also serves as a board member for Menus for All and recently co-authored Foresight Augmented Reality's Solution Proposal for the US Department of Transportation's Inclusive Design Challenge. He's also a US Paralympian World Championship team member.

Will Bubenik - Will is the founder and CEO of Nebula Media Group, whose mission it is to ensure that websites are accessible so that people with disabilities can access them from audits and fixes to training and coaching. Nebula Media Group provides customized accessibility solutions so companies can attain, maintain, and sustain a true accessibility and compliance program at their organization.

Additional resources based on this episode:

YouTube: Why Should Business Leaders Care About DEI?

Bing Video: How diversity makes teams more innovative | Rocío Lorenzo | TED

Workable: Why diversity in the workplace matters and how to increase DEI

Forbes: The Importance Of Diversity And Inclusion For Today's Companies

Click here for a full transcript of this episode.

VitaSupreme Supplements:

To get 10% off your first order, go to

More episodes
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu