Top 30
Champions of Diversity

2018 Top 30 Champions of Diversity
Strategize for Success

DiversityPlus Magazine publishes throughout the year, but presenting the annual Top 30 Champions of Diversity is an annual highlight and privilege. The Champions are people who have been charged with embedding diversity in their organizations and connecting diverse suppliers and corporate buyers. In some instances, the Champions are responsible for driving diversity in the supply chains and the workforce. They are passionate about diversity and have a deep belief it must be a core principle so that diverse businesses have access to opportunities. Their message is this: Diversity is important to long-term organizational success.

The business marketplace has significantly changed over the last decade. It is more diverse, more global and more complex. Companies must be more technological, more innovative and more networked. All of these factors make the role of the Top 30 Champions of Diversity even more important because their efforts offer solutions for their organizations and for diverse suppliers hoping to land corporate customers or to grow their businesses. The Champions represent opportunity, whether working as a diversity professional in a commercial enterprise or government agency, or working as a matchmaker in a diversity organization. They are all about getting measurable results rather than talking about diversity as an ideal that may or may not be achieved.

The Champions work in a variety of industries, making it clear that supply chain diversity benefits all businesses. The industries represented this year include all types of healthcare companies, including technologies, insurance, managed care and consulting. Also represented are professional services, manufacturing, banking and financial services, automotive manufacturing and systems, energy, telecommunications, hotels and resorts, grocery stores, aerospace, and pharmaceuticals. There are several Champions working for government, special interest groups or a Chamber of Commerce. Though the industries are varied, the goals are focused on helping their organizations grow by embracing diversity.

Supply chain diversity gains more importance each year as a principle of equal opportunity in a global marketplace and in multicultural communities. Numerous research studies have proven many times over that diversity in supply chains and the workforce improves the bottom line. Each year the Top 30 Champions respond by developing new strategies that are custom-fit to their organizations. Education, or getting the message out, is the overriding theme this year. The Champions spend considerable time meeting with executives and managers, developing communication systems to get employees on board with the importance of diversity, participating in RFP meetings to ensure diverse suppliers have a voice and are included, and outreaching to suppliers and communities. They are all dynamic, people-oriented and passionate about diversity.

Strategies this year also demonstrate that more diversity leaders are also taking a hands-on approach. They coach suppliers to help them succeed as vendors, sharing information about the structure, systems and processes within their organizations. Coaching sessions also assist diverse suppliers with developing a process for building scalability and capabilities so the suppliers can meet the needs of their customers. It has also become clear that measuring progress and holding organizational leaders accountable for their performance in the diversity space have also become critical strategies for building diverse supply chains. The Champions have developed computerized monitoring systems, supplier portals, spend reports, and a variety of tools for sharing information with managers, sales teams, executives and board members. Data analytics drive the expansion of supplier diversity programs and give executives the information they need to ensure progress is made. Many senior leaders today hold the appropriate managers responsible for meeting mutually agreed upon goals. That is due to the effort of people like the Top 30 Champions.

The large variety of strategies also include partnering with diversity organizations, attending networking events, developing matchmaking and information sharing workshops for diverse suppliers, regularly publishing online newsletters that all employees can read, and selecting MBEs for sponsorship to attend business education programs like the Tuck Program. They also personally interact with employees across the organization and at all levels to identify those who are natural champions of diversity. This is what it takes to develop an organizational culture that embraces diversity as a core value.

DiversityPlus Magazine is honored to present the 2018 Top 30 Champions of Diversity. We stand in awe of their relentless efforts and successes in the diversity space. Their organizations recognize them as experts who offer real-world solutions to overcoming the challenges of a volatile, globalized marketplace. They unselfishly believe that diversity is an all-embracing principle that benefits their organizations, communities of operation and the general economy. Please join the staff of DiversityPlus Magazine in congratulating the Top 30 Champions of Diversity as leaders who are changing the world for the better.

Kimberly Marcus

Director, Supplier Diversity
AARP

Concetta Savovich

Sustainability
Abbott

Veronica Johnson

Supplier Diversity Lead
ADM

John E. Harmon, Sr., IOM

Founder, President, and CEO
African American Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey

Byron Witherspoon

Managing Executive, Supplier Diversity
Ameren

Tiffany Garrett

Sourcing Analyst
AmeriHealth

Brenda Burke

Staff Vice President - Supplier Diversity
Anthem

Shelly Brown

Leader, Diversity Solutions
AON

Gonzalo A. de la Melena Jr.

President and Chief Executive Officer
Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Angela Williams

Senior Manager-Supplier Diversity
AT&T

Tim Dolan

Director, Indirect Sourcing, Global Sourcing
Boston Scientific

Natalie McGrady

Director, Supplier Diversity
Cargill

Megan Rast

Manager, Supplier Diversity & Strategic Procurement
Charter Communications

Michael Harris

Supplier Diversity Manager
Continental

Lance Hyde

Diversity Manager
EQT

Francisco Vasquez

Supplier Diversity Manager
Eversource Energy

Lottie Holland

Head of Supplier Diversity
FCA

Beatrice Louissaint

President & CEO
FSMSDC

Robert A. James

Program Manager, Supplier Diversity
Highmark Health

Fred Lona

Senior Director, Supplier Diversity & Performance Management
Hilton

William Kapfer

Global Head, Supplier Diversity
JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Larissa England

Sr. Manager, Diversity & Inclusion
Kroger

Susannah Raheb

Corporate Supplier Diversity Leader
Lockheed Martin

Sheila Dews-Johnson

Director of Supplier Diversity & Supplier Sustainability
McCormick

William Holmes

Associate Director, Global Economic Inclusion & Supplier Diversity
Merck

Ellen Jameson

Director, Supplier Diversity
Pfizer

Roland Jones

Chief Procurement Officer
Prince George

Gary Joseph

Chief Executive Officer
SASDC

Mammie Price

Manager, Supplier Strategy
SCANA

Hector Martinez

Vice President, Supplier Diversity
U.S. Bank