Investing in Workplace Diversity and Inclusion
Discrimination in the workplace is a persistent problem in society. It exists in numerous forms and effects millions of people in the United States every day. Nearly twenty percent of businesses listed as a part of Fortune’s 1000 have little to no formal diversity effort programs. Currently, women and minority groups are underrepresented in most professional fields. This includes a lack of women and minorities in positions of leadership, low rates of retention, and lower overall pay compared to their white counterparts. How does a more diverse workplace benefit an organization? How does a less diverse workplace harm an organization? What are some the biggest challenges to fixing this diversity issue?
This panel of individuals across the professional spectrum will talk about some of the work being done to solve these issues and how to create a more inclusive, representative workplace.
About the speakers:
Lesa is the co-founder and CEO of ProfHire, a technology company connecting higher education institutions with vetted scholars and industry professionals for part-time faculty positions. With 20 years experience in the field of human resources, primarily in higher education, she has been the chief human resources officer of three universities, including Mills College from 2008 – 2013. Her years in higher education led her to solve a problem many universities face finding, vetting, and onboarding part-time faculty. Lesa has consulted with more than 40 companies nationwide on human resources, motivation, and organizational development. Her background also includes working in heath care, manufacturing and software industries. Motivated to give back and make a difference in young lives, Lesa developed an Everyday Role Models program and an inspirational children’s book series, "Thompson Twins". She is also the author of the self-help book "Achieve in 5!: Transform your life in just five minutes a day" and the instruction guide, "Become a Part-time Professor." A veteran of the United States Air Force, Lesa holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Criminal Justice from The Ohio State University, a Masters in Public Administration in Human Resources from Golden Gate University, and a PhD in Transformative Learning from the California Institute of Integral Studies.
Andi is responsible for overseeing the administrative functions for SF Ballet School, its student residence, and all education and outreach programs for youth, families, and adults, as well as strategic planning and board relations as a member of the senior management team. Prior to that, she was the SF Ballet School Administrative Manager for 4 years. For the previous 10 years, she held three positions at the SF Symphony in the Education and Electronic Media departments. Prior to joining the SF Symphony, Andi held the position of Registrar for the San Francisco Ballet School and before that she was the program director for The Hills Project, an afterschool arts program for underserved youth and a model for private-public partnerships. Andi has gained a wealth of experience in program design and development from 20+ years in arts administration and education. In addition, she has taught music both privately and in public schools. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the Peabody Conservatory/Johns Hopkins University, with additional graduate studies at Ithaca College and the Florida State University. She had performed professionally before shifting to the administrative side of the arts and education.