The 2021 OUTstanding LGBT+ Role Model Lists, supported by Yahoo Finance, are a powerful reflection of the incredible achievements of LGBT+ people and their allies in the business community.
The lists, prepared by diversity and inclusion membership organisation INvolve, highlight role models for others to follow when it comes to being out and proud at work, driving positive change in the office, or supporting your LGBT+ colleagues. Executives on the allies list work within at least three levels from the chief executive at large companies or lead small organisations themselves. All of the allies on the list — who are not LGBT+ themselves but support LGBT+ inclusion — were nominated by peers and colleagues, or put themselves forward.
Read more: The OUTstanding Top 50 Allies 2021
Nominations were then reviewed by the OUTstanding judging panel, who scored each person on the influence of their role, their impact on staff inside and outside the workplace, and their business achievements.
1) Moriaki Kida, CEO, EY Japan
As chairperson and CEO of EY Japan, Moriaki Kida has led discussions on progressing LGBT+ inclusiveness globally, resulting in HR policy transformations across EY and empowering future leaders across the company's large footprint.
Kida is the Global Unity network sponsor and played an active role in forming the EY global LGBT+ strategy. With his guidance, the Unity network hosted a 24-hour global event for International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia 2021.
This event saw EY Asia-Pacific (APAC) regional leaders and the Japan leadership team declare their support for the LGBT+ community as allies. Mori co-signed the diversity, equity, and inclusiveness (DE&I) statement as part of the Asia-Pacific area operating executive, to demonstrate EY’s collective commitment to foster a culture of diversity and inclusiveness.
Aided by his vision, EY Japan pledged support for Business for Marriage Equality as well as the LGBT+ Equality Act (Anti-Discrimination) Campaign. He is a known voice for LGBT+ legal rights even outside of EY.
2) Amin Kassam, head of legal – Asia-Pacific, Bloomberg
As head of legal for Bloomberg in Asia-Pacific (APAC), Amin Kassam has actively leveraged diversity as a factor in selecting outside counsel and has added a number of openly LGBTQ+ lawyers at law firms across Asia to its roster.
He is also the executive sponsor for Bloomberg's LGBTQ+ & Ally Community (BPROUD) in APAC and the lead lawyer in the firm responsible for promoting and vetting Bloomberg's corporate advocacy initiatives, including public support for marriage equality initiatives and LGBTQ+ rights around the world.
Kassam led Bloomberg's efforts to sign onto the Equal Love marriage equality initiative in Hong Kong, 'The Viewpoint on Marriage Equality' statement in Japan, and at least six LGBTQ+ corporate advocacy amicus briefs in the US.
This includes Bostock v Clayton County (2020), where the US Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling that employers are prohibited from discriminating against employees on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
3) Emily Hamilton, vice president – strategic change, Electrocomponents
Emily Hamilton delivered inclusion training with an emphasis on transgender inclusion across the global business, provided a supportive environment for trans colleagues, as well as awareness for improving relationships with trans customers and suppliers.
She advised on policy revision for transitioning at work and dignity at work policies, and also advocated and secured inclusion of trans-related healthcare to be added into company health policies. She initiated links with the supplier community to improve trans visibility and dialogue with organisations within the electronics and distribution sector around the world to enhance the place of women, LGBT+ people and those with disabilities in a predominantly male sector.
Hamilton also delivered the closing keynote speech at the myGwork WorkPride event in 2020, discussing the impact of coming out as transgender at work, and how organisations and individuals can improve their policies and approaches to trans employees, their families and colleagues.
4) Beth Ford, president and CEO, Land O'Lakes
As the first openly gay woman to run a Fortune 500 company, Beth Ford has made it a priority to share the message that everyone benefits when we bring our authentic selves to all aspects of our lives, including work.
She leads the Executive Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) Council, a leadership team that drives inclusion across the workforce and works with 11 employee resource groups (ERGs), supplier diversity, and the Diversity Impacts Business Board.
One of those groups, Land O'Lakes Pride Alliance Employee Resource Group, exists to provide a safe and inclusive environment for LGBT+ employees and their allies.
Through this ERG, Land O'Lakes' demonstrates commitment to LGBT+ employees, customers and members, recognising their contributions and value in the marketplace.
Land O'Lakes is one of the only Fortune 500 companies in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis–Saint Paul) to celebrate transgender awareness in November and supports LBGT+ businesses through the Supplier Diversity programme.
5) Daisy Reeves, partner, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner
Daisy Reeves, as Global I&D Client Relationship Partner, a first of its kind in law, and as LGBT+ co-chair, helps drive the inclusion agenda in 30 offices worldwide.
Under her stewardship, BCLP launched a global LGBT+ group and developed a transatlantic legal pride recruitment initiative 'BCLP Pride'.
Reeves also initiated 'DiversCity', a decade-running, innovative award-winning LGBT+ graduate recruitment event in which 15 law firms participated, with over 2000 LGBT+ students being shown a legal career.
She developed 'AuthentiCity' a first-of-its-kind cross-sector event for LGBT+ students/apprentices interested in a career in the wider city and initiated a UK-wide mentoring programme for the legal profession with Stonewall and Law Society, mentoring smaller UK firms in LGBT+ inclusivity.
Recently, BCLP has initiated an innovative 'hours gap' reporting for ‘diverse’ lawyers, including LGBT+ lawyers, to ensure fair work allocations, and adopted the Philadelphia flag 2020 as well as events to overtly include people of colour within the LGBT+ community. Reeves also speaks globally at the intersection of LGBT+, mental health and disability.
6) Allyn L Shaw, president and CTO, Recycle Track Systems
Shaw leads all diversity and inclusion efforts, including the HR function for Recycle Track Systems. In his two years at the head of the company, representation has increased significantly.
He has participated in over 15 panels and eight speaking engagements, and was asked to join the Victory Fund/Institute Board as well as the New York LGBT Center Board.
He is also on the board of directors for Out & Equal, the Victory Fund/Institute as well as The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center.
7) Robyn Grew, global COO & general counsel, head of ESG and head of Man Group US
Grew is the senior sponsor of Man Group’s (EMG.L) LGBT+ Network, Pride@man, and spearheaded a popular initiative to provide Pride and ally flags to those who would like them on their desk, sending a message of support to everyone who enters the office.
Man Group celebrates Pride annually by hosting events, flying the Pride flag on top of their building, and displaying decorations in their office lobbies globally to show support publicly.
Grew has recently led conversations with former professional boxer Nicola Adams, focusing on intersectionality and inclusion, and with mental health campaigner Jonny Benjamin, which focused on his struggle with his sexual orientation, and mental health problems.
She is chair of the AIMA Diversity & Inclusion Working Group and in 2021 coordinated the working group's booklet: 'How to be an Ally: Stories from the Hedge Fund Industry', which details how people who work in the industry are essential to the success of DE&I efforts.
8) Jay Lin, CEO, Portico Media
As CEO of Portico Media and an openly gay person, Lin has dedicated the last few years implementing LGBT+ activism within the company's business plan.
In May 2020, he launched a global LGBT+ focused streaming platform, GagaOOLala, bringing queer Asian stories to the rest of the world. Since then, they have commissioned around 30 LGBT+ titles (features, shorts, series and variety shows) giving voice to underrepresented creators in countries like Taiwan, Thailand, Japan and the Philippines.
Their original film in collaboration with PBS has received a 2020 news and documentary Emmy Awards nomination for Outstanding Business & Economic Documentary.
Due to the efforts in looking for LGBT+ professionals, 65% of the employees at Portico Media are openly part of the community.
Lin is also a founding member of the Marriage Equality Coalition Taiwan, and a board member for Rainbow Coalition and Taiwan LGBT Rights Family Association. He is also the Taiwanese co-ordinator for Men Having Babies.
9) Louis A Vega, president, North America; VP, government affairs and advocacy, Dow
Louis Vega's holistic approach to inclusion and diversity in the workplace is best illustrated through his involvement with Dow's (DOW) employee resource group for LGBT+ and ally employees, GLAD.
As the group's global advisor, he has worked with chapters globally to promote a more inclusive workplace and community for all employees. Vega is a member of Dow's Inclusion Council. He sponsors and leads Dow’s Social Justice Council, and serves as a member of the company’s operations team.
A leader and pivotal voice on business strategy, people development, and growth matters for Dow around the globe, Louis brings his passion for inclusion to all his discussions and involvements – from engagements with government and industry leaders to serving on the board of directors for multiple civil society groups.
In addition, through his service on the boards of numerous other inclusion-focused organisations, he leverages his relationships within the business community and shares his strategic business counsel to promote a more equal world for all.
10) Alim Dhanji, president, adidas Canada
Alim Dhanji was the inaugural chair of the Adidas Global Committee on Accelerating Diversity & Inclusion, partnering with the CEO and senior executives to strengthen their culture of inclusion.
As one of the most senior 'out' executives at the company, Dhanji drove visible support in raising awareness of LGBT+ inclusion at the senior most levels. He actively mentors LGBT+ employees and counsels allies on creating a culture of inclusion. He also partners with other LGBT+ colleagues to ensure topics specific to the LGBT+ community are represented and advocated for.
He participates in numerous speaking engagements on LGBT+ diversity and inclusion at universities, providing a point of reference on career progression whilst being an out executive or on panels sharing best practices on inclusion.
Dhanji has served as COO of the LGBT Foundation, a non-profit organisation with the mission to achieve equal rights and acceptance for all members of the LGBT+ community worldwide.
11) David Furnish, CEO, Rocket Entertainment
David Furnish leads Rocket Entertainment Group with a strong emphasis on both inclusion and diversity across internal policies and external projects.
As chairman of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, he launched a COVID-19 Emergency Fund to support marginalised LGBT+ and other vulnerable communities during the pandemic to pivot to new models of HIV care.
The Emergency Fund has given out more than $2m in grants all over the world which saw 22,000 kits of personal protective equipment (PPE) distributed, 8,500 people receiving emergency food packages, 200 people newly diagnosed with HIV, more than 4,000 people living with HIV receiving home delivery of their medication, and over one million text messages sent with sexual health information.
In 2020, Furnish won the British LGBT Global Impact Award with husband Sir Elton John for their achievements with the Elton John AIDS Foundation to help the LGBT+ community during COVID-19.
12) Gigi Chao, executive vice-chairman, Cheuk Nang
Gigi Chao is the founder on Hong Kong Marriage Equality, which has been able to achieve legal recognition for same-sex couples' rights to public and subsidised housing, joint custody rights for a lesbian couple with kids, and inheritance rights for a same sex married couple.
It also runs a fun LGBTIQ 101 online course, and an app that allows people to report instances of LGBT+ or gender identity discrimination called VoiceOUT!
Her work includes LGBT+ advocacy for all of Hong Kong and Asian countries where Cheuk Nang operates, such as the Chinese mainland and Malaysia.
13) Cindy Noble, chief people officer, Compass Group North America
As the chief people officer of the sixth-largest company in the US, Cindy Noble is a champion for D&I, fostering an environment where associates feel seen, heard, and respected, and where they feel empowered to show up as their authentic selves.
Under her leadership, Compass Group launched its first-ever D&I survey, established initiatives confronting unintentional biases, and implemented training centred around why pronouns matter, which speaks to LGBT+ inclusivity.
In addition, pre-COVID, Noble expanded Compass’ Pride Celebration from a single day to four days in four states in order to reach more associates and communities.
Noble's passion and commitment to diversity is reflected in Compass Group's consistent acknowledgement by outside organisations, including being named a Forbes Best Employer for Diversity four years in a row. Also, her service on external boards and committees, including Charlotte Center City, American Heart Association and Jose Andres World Central Kitchen, focus on D&I issues.
14) Maggie Lower, CMO, Hootsuite
Since joining as chief marketing officer (CMO), Maggie has committed her support in making the strategy around DE&I into a differentiator for Hootsuite.
As the team is building out ERGs she will be the executive sponsor to the LGBT+ group. She will also be involved in Hootsuite's partnership with Pride at Work Canada, supporting the learning they provide, and contributing thought leadership.
She will be a keynote speaker at AdWorld and SMW London and has guest lectured at the Kellogg School of Management, one of the top global MBA programmes.
She spends time mentoring in the LGBT+ community and in the US Marketing Academy, because more informed voices at the C-suite table means everyone wins.
In previous roles as CMO of Cision and TrueBlue, she worked with their employee resource groups to raise visibility for LGBT+ ERGs, and has a demonstrated track record of supporting and leading LGBT+ friendly practices at all of her previous employers.
15) Rick Suarez, country president Spain, AstraZeneca
Suarez has served for many years as an executive sponsor of AstraZeneca's (AZN.L) ERG, focused on providing support and education, and fostering a culture of openness, tolerance, and acceptance within AstraZeneca.
He supported the co-chairs who lead the US group of AstraZeneca PRIDE, of close to 500 members, ensuring they have the resources needed to advance important changes for the LGBT+ community at AstraZeneca.
In partnership with the US Pride community, he pushed for important conversations to be had on inclusion, diversity and acceptance.
To date, the ERG has helped to inform and drive important organisational change resulting in a score of 100 on the HRC Corporate Equality Index. These changes include a broader definition of family from a benefits standpoint. Other changes included extending the firm's medical plan fertility coverage to better support female same-sex couples, eliminating a clause requiring women to have to first prove infertility.
16) Karen Teo, VP, APAC, Global Business Group, Facebook
Karen Teo is the global co-exec sponsor for Pride@ which has brought awareness to the work of the people who take on Pride@ advocacy and equity building work on top of their core jobs.
She has supported, advocated for and co-created trans healthcare benefit access to countries outside the US, starting in Singapore and now expanding to other countries.
Through the ERG, the different lived experiences of LGBT+ folks have been highlighted and celebrated and they are currently working on a more thoughtful approach to gender neutral restrooms across all the offices with the facilities team with an inclusion-first mind set.
Teo mentors as part of the Pink Dot initiative in Singapore, working with other LGBT+ leaders to offer support, perspectives and outreach to young working professionals who might need help with their identity in the workplace.
17) Pedro Pina, VP, head of YouTube Europe, Middle East and Africa, Google/YouTube
Pedro Pina joined YouTube in August 2021 as head of YouTube for Europe Middle East and Africa, in charge of the YouTube business, strategy, operations and content partnerships. Globally, YouTube reaches two billion monthly users.
In 2019, he was named one of the 10 most influential LGBTQ+ executives in the UK by the British LGBTQ+ awards. In the same year he was named the world's top LGBT+ executive role model on the OUTstanding 100 LGBT+ Executive Role Models Global List.
Pina is a board member of OutRight Action International, an advisory member for the Outvertising Council in the UK, and a member of the Corporate Advisory Board of the Victoria & Albert Museum of Art. Outside of work, being a Portuguese native, he loves spending time by the sea with his husband and his daughter.
18) Kent Thoelke, chief innovation officer, ICON
At ICON, Kent Thoelke is the executive sponsor that championed Diversity, Equality and Inclusion and deployed the Employee Resource Groups focused on LGBTQ+ inclusion, providing both open and confidential support for LGBTQ+ employees worldwide.
He is an open and vocal advocate for LGBTQ+ equality and inclusivity by ensuring visibility for all employees, working authentically as an out C-suite executive, and encouraging others to get involved in meaningful inclusivity initiatives.
Thoelke has engaged with ICON employees as well as customers and partners to educate and inform them on the importance of equality and inclusivity as core values both from a human rights perspective, but also as good business practice.
He helped create the company’s global inclusion strategy and the policy for equitable healthcare coverage for LGBTQ+ employees, including transgender-specific needs. Thoelke and his husband have also supported college scholarships for future LGBTQ+ leaders for over a decade. He also believes that activism and leadership doesn’t end when you leave the office – it’s how you live every day.
19) Suresh Raj, global chief growth officer, Virtue (VICE Media Group)
Raj sits on the global management team and directly engages leadership on addressing and tackling all matters of DE&I. As an exec sponsor on such matters, Raj provides senior counsel on issues impacting Virtue employees globally and this includes promoting and celebrating global LGBT+ visibility throughout the year within the workforce and leadership, beyond Pride months.
Collaborating closely with talent teams to ensure focus on building a pipeline of diverse candidates including representation from LGBT+ individuals at all levels, from internships to senior leadership. Previous achievements include creating and curating a C-Suite level dinner series focused on 'purpose', including LGBT+ issues and bringing together 13 world leading brands across finance, technology and healthcare, which resulted in the founding of The Collective, a LGBT+ initiative.
He is an advisory board member for Ruebik and DealEngine – both companies focused on changing the landscape and success for minority communities including LGBT+.
20) Adam Stanley, former CIO and chief digital officer, Cushman & Wakefield
Adam Stanley is the executive sponsor of UNITY, the LGBT+ network. He helped drive the expansion of UNITY from being primarily a UK-based group to include the US, Canada, Australia, and several other countries; it is currently being formed into the company's first global ERG.
He significantly supported the first submission to Human Resource Coalition's corporate equality index in which the company scored a perfect 100. He has spoken on numerous panels in the last year around diversity, specifically on being an out gay executive, and he regularly speaks within his industry and across other industries.
Stanley was featured in a joint study from a prominent consultancy and leading recruiting firm on gay executives. Stanley is also a non-executive board director for GATX Corporation. He lives in Austin, Texas, with his husband Timothy and their dog Aaliyah.
Gabrielle Novacek, managing director and partner, Boston Consulting Group
Gabrielle Novacek served as the global leader for Boston Consulting Group's (BCG) LGBT+ ERG, Pride@BCG. Under her leadership, the firm's LGBT+ community expanded dramatically across our global footprint, and made significant advancements in LGBT+ support, benefits, and leadership representation.
She became co-leader of BCG's Global Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion team and now owns, alongside another colleague, overall responsibility for the advancement of BCG's global internal DE&I agenda, including efforts to support our LGBT+ employees.
This work has resulted in the continued growth of BCG’s LGBT+ community, retention and promotion rates that exceed those of the overall employee population, and the publication of significant thought leadership on topics of LGBT+ inclusion, including a landmark study completed in partnership with The Center in New York City.
Novacek was also appointed as both head of BCG Chicago and member of its North America Management teams, which was the first time a lesbian had ever held either an office leadership, or executive management role in the firm.
Jim Ford, partner, Allen & Overy
Jim Ford is the chair of the global LGBT+ network; involved in D&I-focused business development, graduate recruitment, mentoring and social responsibility, as well as LGBT+ aspects of A&O's "All In" initiative, which was launched in May 2021 as a global commitment to becoming more inclusive workplace.
He is the partner sponsor for A&O’s ongoing policy review with Stonewall and the launch of a more global approach for A&Out. He led the network in taking Pride virtual during lockdown with initiatives such as a collage featuring LGBT+ colleagues and allies, a seminar with John Amaechi exploring intersectionality and quiz nights allowing for global participation.
He also interviewed Eddie Izzard on trans and gender identity issues and a trustee for the charity Diversity Role Models.
Ford also provides pro bono legal advice to Queer Britain, the UK's first national LGBT+ focused museum, and recently co-organised a Queer Britain art exhibition in A&O's London lobby.
Eugenio Pirri, chief people and culture officer, Dorchester Collection
Eugenio Pirri leads all efforts across our entire business in all aspects of diversity, inclusion and belonging. He created and launched all Dorchester Collection policies and procedures and ensured they are fully in place across all parts of the business.
He ensures all locations lead through the firm's global approach of education, communication and celebration, and monitor and track efforts accordingly.
He acts both as internal and external role model and spokesperson and promotes all protected statuses equally throughout the business.
Pirri is an ardent advocate for diversity and inclusion across every aspect of operations and has pioneered several initiatives including the We Care philosophy, the right of every employee to feel safe and always respected.
He has introduced coaching, mentoring and diversity celebrations to showcase the truly inclusive environment of Dorchester Collection. He also conducts diversity and inclusion workshops within, working with hotels to support local charities to advance the company's message of inclusivity.
Emma Springham, CMO, TSB
Emma Springham has run online video sessions on the importance of being an ally and has rewritten the marketing strategy to put D&I at the heart of the plan.
In her previous role at chief marketing officer at Post Office, she led on all of the network strategy, looked outside of the organisation for allies and launched a partnership campaign across the Post Office, Levi's and Queer Britain.
She shared her own real-life story, which was featured across social channels alongside other colleague stories. And she also trained the social media team to respond to homophobic comments which were picked up in a number of press articles. As an openly gay senior leader she supports a number of mentees in their journey.
Nassib Abou-Khalil, chief legal officer, Nokia
Nassib Abou-Khalil has been Nokia’s chief legal officer since August 2019 with responsibility for all legal and compliance matters of the Nokia Group.
He joined Nokia in September 2014 as head of legal & compliance for the MEA region, later becoming general counsel for customer operations and deputy chief legal officer, business.
In addition to his legal work, Abou-Khalil is an outspoken advocate for equity, inclusion and diversity, working closely with Nokia’s LGBT+ employee resource group, EQUAL! He took part in the launch of the OUT Leaders programme as Nokia’s first out leader.
He later co-developed a broader OUT Leaders programme focusing on the development and visibility of out leaders throughout the organisation. Under his leadership, Nokia’s legal department launched its equity, inclusion and diversity scorecard, a quarterly and annual assessment of its key panel law firms, aimed at advancing progress in the legal industry.
Shawna Baker, Cherokee Nation Supreme Court justice, Cherokee Nation
Shawna is the first openly gay justice on the Cherokee Nation Supreme Court, and only the third woman to serve on the court. Justice Baker serves as an indigenous role model to 2SLGBT+ tribal members and seeks to drive equity and inclusion throughout the First Nations.
She is presently working to strategically identify various HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and response opportunities both within in the Cherokee Nation through her service on its Ending the HIV Epidemic project and throughout the United States by serving as a member on the Indian Health Services and the Northwest Portland Area Indian Health Board’s Native Ending the HIV Epidemic Advisory Committee.
Justice Baker’s first written opinion for the Supreme Court ushers in a new era of racial equality in Indian Country by recognising the Cherokee Nation’s Freedman descendants as full citizens of the tribe. Through the language chosen in this historic opinion, the Supreme Court also recognises non-binary persons for the first time.
Geffrye Parsons, managing director, Macquarie Group
Parsons is a designated mental wellbeing ambassador for LGBTQ+ matters, and acts as an ally representative for trans/non-binary to ensure full inclusion. His passion is the intersectionality of LGBTQ+ with other minority characteristics, about which he has initiated multiple events and campaigns.
He is a designated mental wellbeing ambassador for LGBTQ+ matters, and acts as an ally representative for trans/non-binary to ensure full inclusion. His passion is the intersectionality of LGBTQ+ with other minority characteristics, about which he has initiated multiple events and campaigns.
Parsons and his two fellow network co-chairs have consulted with Macquarie’s D&I and HR teams to ensure fully inclusive policies, and empowered multiple LGBTQ+ staff, and their allies, to become change agents.
Externally, Parsons is a trustee of two LGBTQ+ charities, GiveOut and Diversity Role Models, has been a judge for both the British LGBTQ+ Awards and the PinkNews Awards, and is a steering committee member of the former. He is also a frequent external speaker and writer for LGBTQ+ events and publications.
Ali Potia, partner, McKinsey & Company
Ali Potia leads McKinsey’s Southeast Asia Consumer Practice and is the APAC lead of GLAM, McKinsey’s global LGBT+ network.
Starting out in 2007 as one of the few LGBT+ employees in Asia, he has led GLAM’s expansion to 25 offices in 16 countries. He established a firmwide mentorship programme, and organised McKinsey's global conference for more than 700 LGBT+ colleagues.
He has led more than 30 town halls on inclusion in the past year. He led participation on the India Workplace Equality Index, Japan Pride Index and Australia Pride in Diversity index as well as sponsored McKinsey signing Marriage Equality declarations in Japan and the Equal Love campaign in Hong Kong.
Potia leads the annual global Day of Pink celebration for 30,000+ colleagues. He launched McKinsey's Asia Day of Service, where more than 4,000 colleagues spend a day volunteering, including at LGBT+ organisations. He has increased LGBT+ Ally participation from 13% of the office to 30% and launched Conscious Inclusion for all 360+ partners in APAC.
Pips Bunce, director & head of investment banking technology strategic programmes, Credit Suisse
Pips Bunce is a proud member of the trans community, identifying as gender-fluid and non-binary, and is a champion progressing LGBTQI+ inclusion and equality on a global scale.
She drives LGBT+ inclusion as a priority, ensures senior members are engaged, mentors the EMEA CEO and other senior leaders on LGBT+ inclusion and co-chair of the LGBT+ & Ally Network with 6000+ active and engaged Allies globally. Bunce regularly presents to large audiences and is a prolific public speaker, partnering with many organisations, a regular panellist, presenter and media contributor raising awareness of LGBT+, trans and non-binary inclusion.
She carries out work with hundreds of organisations, has presented in parliament and is working with the Government Equalities Office and is an ambassador of many leading organisations including Mermaids, DRM and Stonewall.
Speaking and leading with sincerity and humility on overcoming adversity as a queer individual and the power and impact authenticity/allyship has on the entire LGBT community, which she is proud to be part of.
Wesley Bizzell, senior assistant, general Counsel; managing director of political law & ethics programmes, Altria
Bizzell is a co-founder of Altria’s LGBT+ employee resource group and has led numerous efforts that convinced Altria to make consequential changes to its policies and practices to ensure it is more welcoming for LGBT+ employees.
He also has worked to highlight the diversity of the LGBT+ community, bringing to the company speakers who challenge stereotypes and empowering employees to have conversations about difference.
In recent years, he has hosted and moderated interviews with Jake Choi, a Korean American out pansexual actor; Chris Mosier, the first trans member of Team USA; author Ruth Coker Burks, who cared for young men dying of Aids in the American South in the 1980s; and Judy Shepard, the mother of Matthew Shepard.
Through his efforts and advocacy, Altria has joined companies to oppose legislation targeting trans individuals and has publicly endorsed state and federal non-discrimination bills.
Bizzell is a frequent author and speaker on inclusion and diversity within both the corporate and legal communities and in 2021 testified before multiple legislatures on the need to ban the LGBTQ+ panic defence.
Externally, he serves as the immediate past president for the National LGBTQ+ Bar Association and was recently appointed to be a commissioner for the American Bar Association’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Commission.
Darren Rickards, managing director, head of corporate banking, Central Europe, Middle East & Africa, Bank of America
Darren Rickards joined the bank in 2000. He is a member of the bank's global LGBTQ+ leadership executive council and is executive co-sponsor of the LGBTQ+ Pride Network in EMEA.
He hosts and gives talks to WebEx region-wide town halls and LGBTQ+ Pride and Ally panel events both internally and externally, including featuring high-profile LGBTQ+ role models like Mohsin Zaidi.
Rickards hosted the 'Gender Does Not Fit in a Box' panel with a focus on Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) and APAC, as well as the 2020 Courageous Conversation for Global Corporate Banking audience.
He initiates conversations and dialogue on LGBTQ+ topics in the offices throughout the Gulf, Russia, Israel and Africa where such topics are seldom, if ever, raised. He also mentors junior team members through their own 'coming out' journeys.
Rickards was also appointed as founding member of the Inclusive Business Campaign Advisory Board for the Institute of Directors, with a focus on LGBTQ+ inclusion at board level for companies across the UK.
Randeep Sidhu, advisor in equality, health and technology, The Alan Turing Institute
Randeep Sidhu is a healthcare and artificial intelligence (AI) specialist. The Alan Turing Institute is the UK’s National Institute for AI and he is currently focused on removing bias in AI and technology for marginalised groups.
Sidhu joined the NHS frontline in July 2020 to build and run the NHS COVID-19 app. He pioneered specific research to include the needs of LGBT+, refugees and BAME communities.
He was chair of Babylon’s LGBT+ group where he worked to make their AI fully representative of LGBT+ people removing biases impacting users in UK, US, Canada and Rwanda. He also improved trans representation in healthcare delivery, created improved HR policies and undertook research in East Africa to reduce HIV transmission in poor, LGBT+ and sex worker communities.
Sidhu is a trustee at Terrence Higgins Trust, where he has successfully pushed making pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) free for all on the NHS, and including the needs of Asian, Black and trans communities in sexual health services.
Iris Farley, senior director, human resources, Komatsu
Iris Farley serves as an executive sponsor of the Komatsu Global Women's Network, advocating for inclusion of all gender identities in the group's mission and programming.
She developed and implemented a gender transition policy and plan for the organisation and presented a global webinar for the women's network on gender expansiveness, sharing her journey as a trans woman in a male-dominated industry. In 2021, she facilitated learning on gender diversity and LGBT+ inclusion for a Japanese expatriate cohort of 62 employees.
Her efforts at work have been to raise awareness of the LGBT+ community's needs in the workplace, and to promote inclusion of all who identify as part of the LGBT+ community.
Outside of work, Farley is an active supporter of organisations that advocate for LGBT+ friendly legislation, and LGBT+ inclusion in her faith community. She is also an outspoken champion for prostate cancer awareness and healthcare equality in the transgender community.
Michael Sosso, senior vice president, legal, bp
Michael Sosso leads a global legal team of 100 professionals supporting the Gas & Low Carbon Energy, Production & Operations, and Regions, Cities & Solutions businesses.
He is the sponsor of regional Legal D&I Committees and has been profiled on bp's (BP.L) social media stories telling his story as an openly gay man and the importance of allies in the workplace. He has conducted internal town halls and spoken externally in the US, Asia and Europe educating people about the challenges of coming out, how to be an effective ally, and ways to create a more inclusive environment within the workplace including advocating for self-identification within employee profiles and surveys to gather data on openly-LGBTQ+ pay, promotion, and mood/culture.
Sosso mentors several LGBT+ employees within and outside of bp starting to come out in the workplace, and recently was asked to co-lead the LGBTQ+ D&I Pillar for the European General Counsel Association with the goal of promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion across the legal profession throughout Europe.
Steven Kryger, head of Ray Dalio's investment research team and lead of emerging markets team, Bridgewater Associates
Steven Kryger, an 11-year Bridgewater veteran, heads founder Ray Dalio’s research group, participates on Bridgewater’s Investment Committee, and is responsible for the professional advancement of the firm’s investment professionals.
Kryger established Bridgewater’s first affinity group, the LGBTQ+ Network, and is its executive sponsor. He helped launch Bridgewater’s D&I Council, which is responsible for D&I strategy and outcomes. Steven is jointly responsible for D&I in the Investment Engine Department and has focused on representation and transparency in compensation and promotion.
He championed several firm-wide initiatives, including overhauling Bridgewater’s LGBTQ+ inclusive benefits, updating the firm’s guidelines on gender-neutral language in investment research, and sponsoring events exploring transgender and non-binary identity.
Beyond Bridgewater, Kryger is a founding board member of the New York chapter of Out Investors, whose mission is to make the direct investing industry more welcoming for the LGBTQ+ community, is a volunteer firefighter, and serves on the board of Community Resources for Justice, which runs residential programmes for individuals leaving incarceration.
Gemma Keenan MD, head of entity business risk and operational resilience, Lloyds Bank Corporate Markets
Gemma Keenan is the co-chair of Rainbow, the Lloyds Banking Group wide LGBT+ network with 5,000 members. Rainbow aims to create an environment where colleagues feel they belong – connecting and supporting colleagues, facilitating career growth and influencing the group's internal and external strategy on I&D with a focus on LGBT+.
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the network proactively and quickly moved online to support colleagues throughout the UK and beyond. Keenan was previously chair for the Commercial Banking LGBT+ network and has spoken at multiple internal events and external panels.
She was also the Lloyds (LLOY.L) representative on Interbank LGBT+ Forum, a pan industry forum for LGBT+ networks across the industry.
Keenan is a board trustee and treasurer for Opening Doors London, the largest UK charity providing services and support across the country to LGBT+ people over 50.
Nigell Todd, head of global foreign exchange, Fidelity International
Nigell Todd previously led the Dublin Diversity & Inclusion network which seeks to promote and implement company D&I initiatives with a focus on cultural/ ethnicity, gender, LGBT+ and disability.
He is an active participant in and supports the annual Pride event as well as other LGBT+ events during the year, which also includes fundraising opportunities for 3 LGBT+ charities in Ireland. He was also a panellist on the topic of ‘Coming out in the Workplace’ and shared his personal coming out experience while at work.
He has assisted with the planning of Dublin's first book club event in recognition of LGBT+ History Month and promotes the global roll out and encouraging all employees to learn more about the correct usage of pronouns.
Todd continues to be an internal and external mentor to those who identify as LGBT+ in the financial services industry and has been recognised as an LGBT Project 1000 Role Model.
Iain Anderson, executive chairman, Cicero/AMO
At Cicero/AMO, Iain Anderson has driven mentoring and support for LGBT+ people across parent group HAVAS in the UK. Over the last two years the business has been shortlisted for the LGBT Awards for its impact.
As part of HAVAS, he supports the Diversity and Inclusion Group - ALL IN. He is a Stonewall ambassador and a trustee of global LGBT+ charity GiveOUT.
He chaired the Government Equalities Office IDAHOT global business event and the UK Government's first ever LGBT+ event focused on SMEs in March 2021.
Anderson has recently become the UK government's first ever LGBT+ business champion with a remit to improve the workplace for LGBT+ people, develop solutions to workplace discrimination and champion LGBT+ rights.
Olu Howard, executive director, AWM Observability and Reliability Engineering, JPMorgan Chase
Olu Howard is a recognised leader in the JPMC (JPM) DE&I community. He is the North American co-chair for PRIDE, JPMC's LGBT+ Business Resource Group, and has been an active leader in PRIDE for several years, holding multiple leadership positions.
He sits on AWM's tech diversity council and is the community engagement head for Global Technology's LGBT+ Community.
Individually, Howard is the principal designer and head of AWM Technology's DE&I Reverse Mentoring programme, which is the first of its kind in the company. The programme has been a success and resulted in changes at both an individual and organisational level and its diverse mentors have reported a higher level of engagement, feel heard, and show a higher level of retention.
Additionally, Howard has been key in establishing a relationship between the firm and the Tent Partnership for Refugees (tent.org) where the firm will provide at least 50 mentors for LGBT+ refugees in the US and UK.
Erik Day, senior vice president & general manager, Small Business, Dell Technologies
Erik Day is the global executive sponsor for Pride, Dell Technologies' (DELL) ERG for LGBTQIA+ employees and allies. He has led the ERG during the pandemic to be a centre of joy for the company helping with isolation and driving connection through new global events including monthly dance parties with guest DJs from all 13 ERGs and lip synch battles where contestants lip synch to win prizes.
For Pride Month, he utilised video technology to pass the Pride Flag across 15 countries and 100 employees.
This focus has grown Pride to more than 5,000 members and added five new chapters.
Day is vice chair of the board for Out & Equal Workplace Advocates and was named to the board of The GenderCool Project, a non-profit organisation educating the world on the positive experiences of Trans Youth. To help protect trans kids, their families and the future of work, Day spent 2021 partnering with government affairs to stop trans sports bans across the US.
Filipe Mota da Silva, consulting leader – energy, resources and utilities – UK and EU, Tata Consultancy Services
Filipe Mota da Silva founded and chairs TCS Qolors, the LGBT+ and Ally network in 2017 in a time when homosexuality was criminalised in India.
He developed the TCS LGBT UKI Development Programme to retain/develop LGBT+ employees, and last year registered the lowest attrition rate. He co-developed a mandatory D&I training and influenced and reviewed the change of TCS same sex parental leave, extension on funding for employees in transition and IVF insurance package.
He organised and invited more than 15 LGBT+ leaders from different companies to talk about LGBT+ and allyship in the workplace. He initiated 'Pride stories for kids', joining parents and children on a learning exercise about differences, parenthood and gender expression.
And he co-founded the Tata UKI LGBT+ Alliance to share best practices across Tata Group of companies, celebrate awareness at Pride virtual eevents and bring their 700,000 employees together. He also founded Transition Drivers, an initiative to encourage 100,000 diverse energy leaders for immediate climate action.
Ronnie West, chief people officer, IHS Markit
Passionate about instilling societal change, Ronnie West has been a lead for IHS Markit's public position against LGBT+ oppression. Examples include IHS Markit signing onto the legal brief to the US Supreme Court supporting the protection of employees against discrimination, signing the Stonewall open letter to the UK government declaring "trans rights are human rights" and signing the US Business Statement Opposing Anti-LGBTQ State Legislation.
Internally, West founded IHS Markit’s Courageous Conversation series in mid-2020, working to expand the dialogue for underrepresented employees to give everyone a voice. Similarly, he was pivotal in establishing IHS Markit's zero-tolerance policy through sponsoring guidelines supporting LGBT+ and launching mandatory learning modules.
To further enhance IHS Markit’s position, West has focused on building strong partnerships with external organisations such as myGwork and Stonewall (communities for LGBT+ professionals, graduates & inclusive employers), Correlation One (organisation creating a community of data-fluent underrepresented students & professionals), and business-psychology consultancy Pearn Kandola (focusing on avoiding bias in the promotion process).
Catherine Vaughan, global financial crime, ethics & compliance leader, EY
Catherine Vaughan led a team organising EY's IDAHOTB 2021 showcase event – a 24-hour global webcast. Starting in New Zealand and closing in San Francisco, the event "followed the sun" with a series of messages, stories and discussions by LGBT+ people, allies and business leaders.
Designed to "educate, inspire and celebrate" LGBT+ inclusion at EY, the event was the first of its kind attracting participants from across the EY world. Additionally, she continues to drive LGBT+ inclusion into EY's D&I agenda through 1-2-1 connection with EMEIA D&I Lead and EMEIA D&I SteerCo, and deliver keynote talks and training to internal groups of LGBT+ and non-LGBT+ colleagues.
She sponsors LGBT+ events, fundraising for LGBT+ community groups and participates in Unity Chapter panel discussions as well as supporting BeLonG To, a leading LGBT+ Youth organisation in Ireland supporting young LGBT+ people and working with schools to combat bullying in the school system.
TJ Castro Lim, global co-head of product, private wealth management, Goldman Sachs
At Goldman Sachs (GS) Private Wealth Management, TJ Castro Lim has been a key lead of the LGBT+ Initiative that aims to foster LGBT+ representation and belonging within the firm, as well as to ensure that the needs of the LGBT+ clients and prospects are met.
The team has worked towards identifying wealth management solutions tailored to LGBT+ households. He has been a mentor to LGBT+ interns and employees and led recruiting efforts, including the firm’s involvement in the largest LGBT+ MBA conference.
Through the LGBT+ Initiative, a partnership with the Trevor Project was established to discuss the topic of mental health awareness, which is increasingly timely and significant especially given the disturbing trend in youth suicide – an issue exacerbated by COVID.
He led a drag bingo and show for interns and employees to foster a sense of community and to celebrate Pride. The event was supported and attended by other key firm leaders and top executives.
Antonious Porch, general counsel and chief diversity officer, SoundCloud
Antonious Porch was recently promoted as SoundCloud's first chief diversity officer (CDO) and also remains SoundCloud's general counsel.
AS CDO, his focus is on building, refining, and, most importantly, driving the development of an integrated DE&I strategy that is globally relevant and cross-functionally aligned to business outcomes with the music, engineering, marketing and people teams.
His expanded portfolio gives me a powerful platform to role model professional success as an openly gay Black man. Further, it allows him to directly affect business strategy, recruiting and hiring decisions, employee performance, mentorship opportunities, diversity resource groups (DRGs) and company culture.
He also serves as executive sponsor of the SoundCloud Community Fund, a multi-million-dollar commitment to social justice and equality, as well as musical artists' mental health and wellbeing.
Porch previously served as executive champion of SoundCloud's Clouds of Color DRG for employees of colour and allies, while also being an active presence within SoundCloud's Queer Clouders DRG for LGBT+ employees.
Esteban López, Americas lead, healthcare and life sciences solutions, Google
As a Google Cloud executive, López is a member of HOLA and PRIDE at Google – the ERGs serving Latinx and LGBT+ Googlers.
Having been the executive sponsor of similar ERGs at his previous company, at Google he mentors others and is regularly sought out by other LGBT+ employees throughout the organisation, as he brings his whole self to work; actively talking about his spouse, children, and family life.
López leans into his position as a role model that employees can identify with. In addition to his responsibilities at Google Cloud, he remains a practicing physician and serves on the board of directors of Addus Homecare and Axonics, both publicly traded companies on the NASDAQ (^IXIC) exchange.
He participates in the Equilar Board Diversity Network where he identifies publicly as LGBT+ and Latino. He is also an active member of the Latino Corporate Directors Association and a national speaker on equity, justice, and inclusion and gave a TED talk in 2016 about health equity.
Matt Scarff, director of media & creative, ITV
Matt Scarff is the executive chair of ITV Pride, after passing on the chair role to a new group of LGBT+ co-chairs in January 2020.
He raises LGBT+ and Inclusion into conversations with the ITV leadership team and they refer to him for advice and support when needed. The ITV Pride Network has been active throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping members up to date with LGBT+ news and connecting them with others, especially as some network members were living alone or isolated.
Scarff produces and presents the ITV Pridecast, the podcast for LGBT+ people both at and outside of ITV, which he continued to produce throughout the pandemic. Working with the new co-chairs, he launched ITV Pride Day, an all-day event full of speakers, workshops and sessions across the global business, that happens at the end of Pride Month. ITV celebrated Pride in June 2021 by creating a brand-new on-screen ITV Pride themed channel ident that transmitted across the UK, created by 2 LGBT+ designers.
Marixi Carlos, Accenture Operations client experience lead in the Philippines, Accenture
At Accenture (ACN) in the Philippines, Marixi Carlos holds the roles of inclusion and diversity (I&D) executive sponsor for Operations and Pride sponsor for the I&D Council for Global Operations. She was also its I&D executive sponsor for two years.
Under her leadership, overall Pride allies increased from 6% to 30%. This was achieved with her bold commitment to foster equality and the organisation’s support to the LGBT+ agenda: bringing one’s authentic self to work, loving oneself, and embracing each one’s sexual orientation, gender identity and expression (SOGIE).
Learning sessions on SOGIE and transgender and talks on coming out, parenting, mental health and marriage equality bills contributed to the strengthening of a safe workplace.
She also supported the launch of the Ally Primer, a digital booklet that provides understanding on Allyship. As a result, there was an increased presence and involvement of the LGBT+ community internally and externally. To date, she participates as an adviser and driver of policy changes around LGBT+ inclusion in and outside the organisation.
Josh Graff, managing director, EMEA & LATAM & VP Global Enterprise, LinkedIn
Josh Graff joined LinkedIn – the world’s largest professional network – in 2011, and is now managing director for EMEA & LATAM, and VP of LinkedIn’s Marketing Solutions (advertising) business.
In his role he is responsible for driving member growth, strategic partnerships and revenue across all lines of business in EMEA and Latin America, and leads the Global Enterprise sales team as they help marketers reach, connect and engage with more than 774 million professionals.
Before joining LinkedIn, Graff held roles at Electronics Arts (EA) and Microsoft. Prior to that he founded the world’s first in-game advertising agency, JAM International, which was acquired by Massive Inc. Graff is a passionate advocate for diversity, inclusion and belonging in the workplace.
He has been featured on the Financial Times Top 50 LGBT Leaders list, recognised as an Inspiring Leader at the LGBT Awards, is a founding member of the advocacy group Open For Business, and was recently a commissioner on the HIV Commission.
Sarah Rench, director of artificial intelligence and industry solutions, Avanade
Sarah Rench demonstrates her commitment to diversity and inclusion by being one of the leaders driving Prism, Avanade's LGBT+ network and bringing opportunities to work with partners such as BluePrism and clients CxO/Directors at various firms who she has run LGBT+ events with.
She is also part of Beyond, UKI BAME & multicultural network that she helped start and won the CEO excellence award in back in 2020, which she continues to support through mentoring individuals and with key events like speaking at the Allies event. She has presented at various events including 'Lesbians in Tech' on data and AI, which has over 500+ attendees, and at the All-Party Parliamentary Group on AI on 'Diversity and AI', where she presented to MPs and fellow AI people on the importance of the issue. Rench was also asked to present by the UK Department of Trade on AI in South Korea and highlighted the importance of diversity and AI.
Julio Bruno, CEO, Time Out Group
Through his role as CEO, Julio Bruno is the chair of Time Out Group’s D&I policy. Recognising the importance of role models in business, Bruno is an avid speaker and uses his platform to share his expertise and tools for driving inclusion.
Additionally, he has led partnerships with Copenhagen 2021, WorldPride and EuroGames and is an active member of OutRight Action International’s Diplomat’s Circle.
Peter Arvai, executive chairman and co-founder, Prezi
Peter Arvai is a champion of inclusion both at Prezi and beyond. As the co-founder of WeAreOpen, Arvai leads in raising awareness about the benefits of diversity in the workplace. WeAreOpen’s Network now exceeds 1,000 participating companies.
As a proud member of the LGBT+ community, Arvai uses his platform to foster LGBT+ inclusion and inspires other leaders and organisations to follow suit. Additionally, he has led Prezi to become the first company to march in the Budapest Pride Parade and is also emeritus chair of the board of directors at Bridge Budapest.
Chloe Davies, head of social impact, Lucky Generals
Chloe Davies is committed to driving LGBT+ inclusion in her business and beyond. A champion of inclusion, her personal journey has inspired and motivated her, as seen through her work as lead of Marching Forward and role as the head of finance and governance for UK Black Pride.
Additionally, Davies is a trustee for the London LGBTQ+ Community Centre, head of relations for the London Queer Fashion Show and has been shortlisted for Positive Role Model of the Year (LGBT+) at the National Diversity Awards. She is also an avid speaker and recognises the importance of LGBT+ Role Models in business to inspire others to take action.
John Clifford, partner/practice group leader, McMillan
As the first out LGBT+ lawyer at his firm, John Clifford became the role model that he didn’t have during his early career. In his capacity as partner, he is a founding member and chair of McMillian’s EDI Council and oversees the implementation of training programmes, events and education surrounding inclusion.
Clifford has led exeQutive for 15 years, a network promoting, supporting and strengthening the careers and businesses of Toronto-based LGBT+ professionals, has been the immediate past chair of the ABA LGBTQ+ Involvement Subcommittee, promoting the inclusion of LGBT+ lawyers as well as business law section liaison to the ABA’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Committee.
Noel Gavin, senior vice president, global head, Corporate & Institutional Learning, Northern Trust
Noel Gavin is a committed advocate for inclusion and has been driving D&I for over a decade. Through his work, Northern Trust has seen a significant increase in senior leader engagement with LGBT+ employees, has sponsored the Limerick Virtual Pride Festival 2020 and witnessed an increase in senior Irish leaders mentoring LGBT+ individual, both in and outside of the organisation.
Gavin is also director and vice-chair of Gender Orientation, Sexual Health & HIV (GOSSH), a board member of the Limerick Chamber of Commerce and has been a member of the Gay Lesbian Equality Network (GLEN). He is passionate about giving back to the local and global LGBT+ community and his work is a testament to that.
Michael Schachtner, managing director and partner, Boston Consulting Group
Through his role as managing director and partner at BCG, Michael Schachtner is committed to driving inclusion. His work has including step-changing BCG’s approach to intersectionality, and through his role as leader of North American Networks has significantly grown membership, expanded their footprint and impact beyond BCG and educated the leadership team by advocating for LGBT+ perspectives.
As an avid speaker, Schachtner has delivered keynotes and undertaken panel opportunities to share his best practice for driving inclusion and understands the importance and impact of positive, visible role models. He is currently on the steering committee for the Partnership for Global LGBTI Equality (PGLE), supporting LGBT+ inclusion through business and beyond.
Louise Ah-Wong, senior partner – digital transformation, Agilisys
Louise Ah-Wong is passionate about driving inclusion at Agilisys and beyond as seen through her work advocating for the LGBT+ community.
She is currently chair of Agilisys’ Diversity and Inclusion Committee, and an active member of several internal ERGs including the Agilisys LGBTQ+ Network and Agilisys Women’s Empower Network. Ah-Wong is a key driver of the 2020 Belonging Strategy, tasked with ensuring that LGBT+ D&I is a focal point for attracting and retaining the best talent within the company.
Other notable initiatives have included positive impacts on the gender pay gap, the creation of a D&I Data dashboard and an overall growing commitment to inclusion at Agilisys. Ah-Wong is also a finalist in the D&I Initiative of the Year award at Women in Tech Excellence Awards 2021 and continues to sponsor Agilisys’ social impact initiatives.
Zach Harris, VP of marketing, Water Portfolio, PepsiCo Beverages North America
Zach Harris knows that visibility and representation are crucial elements in fostering diversity and inclusion in business, and he uses his position as a role model to drive change.
As VP of marketing, Harris leads the brand strategy, communications, innovation, and commercial agenda for PepsiCo’s (PEP) water portfolio, which includes purpose-driven brands bubly and LIFEWTR.
Under his leadership, bubly’s recent partnership with nonprofit Family Equality helped to raise awareness of the unique obstacles that LGBTQ+ families face on their path to parenthood, and LIFEWTR’s Life Unseen campaign spotlighted underrepresented creators – including those from the LGBTQ+ community – in partnership with Issa Rae.
Additionally, Harris is an executive sponsor of EQUAL, PepsiCo’s LGBTQ+ ERG, and has played an instrumental role in the recruitment process at PepsiCo since his earliest days at the organisation. He is also part of PepsiCo’s LGBTQ+ Executive Roundtable – a developing global network dedicated to moving the needle toward inclusion.
Tim Thompson, senior VP, corporate evolution and change enablement, TD Bank Group
Tim Thompson is a leader who is committed to driving inclusion and uses his expertise and influence to effect change. At TD Bank Group, he is the LGBTQ2+ area of focus chair for the Inclusion and Diversity Leadership Council.
Under his leadership, TD launched LGBTQ2+ leadership development programmes, organised mentoring events, launched capability for colleagues to share their pronouns through name tags, developed trainings for all employees and people managers, championed an intersectional approach to initiatives, and launched an onboarding program to connect LGBTQ2+ hires with colleagues.
Additionally, TD enhanced customer systems in Canada to provide options for customers to reflect their diverse gender identities and launched the Trans and Non-Binary Entrepreneurial Development Program together with community partners in the US.
Externally, Thompson established and funds an annual scholarship at McGill University, supports local LGBTQ2+ community organisations and participates in conferences and panels.
Martin Shanahan, CEO, IDA Ireland
As the CEO of Ireland’s Industrial Development Agency, working at the intersection of government and global business, Martin Shanahan continues to foster LGBT+ inclusion across society.
As a visible, out senior public servant, he believes in and understands the importance of inspiring role models. The 2021 ‘Be Proud’ campaign, developed by Shanahan's team at IDA is an excellent example of an initiative that raises LGBT+ visibility.
Under Martin’s leadership, IDA Ireland has evolved from raising awareness, organising events and training to measuring and assessing the internal success of its inclusion initiatives.
Jacqui Lloyd, senior VP – HR – talent, learning and diversity, Citi
Jacqui Lloyd recognises her impact as a role model and position at Citi (C) and leverages her expertise and influence to drive inclusion. As the co-chair of Citi’s Pride Network in London, Lloyd has supported the creation of international Pride Network chapters, has led Citi to achieve a Top 10 position in the Stonewall WEI and has launched a reverse mentoring programme connecting LGBT+ colleagues with senior leaders.
An avid speaker, Lloyd has appeared on panels for Lesbian Visibility week 2021, created videos and blogs on LGBT+ topics and has been shortlisted for Diversity Champion of the Year at the 2021 Diva Awards for her great efforts.
Bentley de Beyer, head of human capital management, Goldman Sachs
Bentley de Beyer understands the value of visible role models and uses his platform as a senior, out leader at Goldman Sachs to drive change and be an ally for the LGBTQ+ community in his industry and beyond.
De Beyer is responsible for overseeing the firm’s inclusion networks, and he is a member of the firm’s Global Inclusion and Diversity Committee, where he has introduced practices and initiatives to foster the development of LGBTQ+ employees and drive inclusion.
Externally, de Beyer is a board member for the Trevor Project and has raised $150,000 (£108,700) to help drive forward their mission to provide crisis and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ+ youth.
Diana Ellsworth, partner, McKinsey & Company
Diana Ellsworth is the second LGBT+ woman in McKinsey’s history to have been made partner and understands the importance of LGBT+ role models in business to drive change and inspire others to strive for success.
Ellsworth is the global co-lead of McKinsey’s GLAM (Global LGBT+) network and has been a core leader of local, national and global LGBT+ recruitment efforts across the organisation. As the co-founder and lead for McKinsey’s global DE&I client advisory practice, Ellsworth works on developing LGBT+-specific strategies for companies spanning biotech, financial services, consumer packaged goods and beyond.
Ellsworth has co-authored multiple pieces of research on LGBT+ inclusion as well as larger inclusion strategies. She is an active speaker regarding LGBT+ issues in business and is dedicated to creating workplaces where everyone can succeed and thrive authentically.
Tony Wood, regional leader and managing director, Europe, Mercer Marsh Benefits
Tony Wood is a committed advocate for inclusion and through his role at Mercer Marsh Benefits is driving change for the LGBT+ community.
Wood is the executive sponsor of the firm’s Pride Business Resource Group (BRG) UK and a member of its Pride BRG Europe. He has supported community programmes, social functions and implemented support for LGBT+ colleagues during lockdown.
Wood has worked to improve trans healthcare and has embedded LGBT+-specific policies across the business. As a frequent panelist, he uses his platform to lead change both internally and externally, mentors high potential diverse talent and has sponsored a number of events focused on LGBT+ inclusion.
He understands and values the importance of role models in business, and is proud to be able to use his knowledge and experience to drive change.
Brett House, deputy chief economist, Scotiabank
Brett House is a champion of inclusion and has been active in driving change throughout his career. House is a founding member of Scotiabank CEO’s Diversity and Inclusion Council, executive member of the LGBT+ ERG, and a sponsor and mentor within several development programmes at Scotiabank.
He is an active internal spokesperson on diversity and inclusion, using his expertise and platform to motivate and energise Scotiabank’s employees.
Externally, House represents Scotiabank on the steering committee of the Partnership for LGBTI Equality. He is also a board member of the 519 Community Centre, a municipal hub in Toronto for LGBT+ services, support and activism; a mentor to LGBTQ+ students at the University of Toronto; and a speaker and moderator for national financial sector events.
Jane Rowe, vice-chair, investments, Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan (Canada)
Jane Rowe is vice-chair of investments for Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan and has been an active advocate and role model for the LGBT+ community for over a decade.
She is the executive sponsor and co-chair of Pride@Teachers, an ERG that works to create safe spaces for LGBT+ employees. Through her role as co-chair, she has facilitated events across the finance industry such as webinars on allyship and discussions on bringing one’s whole self to work.
As an out gay woman in finance, Rowe is passionate about being a role model and is highly regarded for her perspective. Recent speaking opportunities include a panel about LGBT+ inclusion for Out Investors, an organisation that seeks to make the investing industry more welcoming for LGBT+ professionals, as well as International Women’s Day events and networking events for Schulich School of Business students at York University.
In 2020, Rowe was elected to the TD Bank Group board, a public financial institution she has long admired for its commitment to a diverse workforce and multi-decade support of the LGBT+ community.
Venkatraghavan CA, managing director, human resources, Accenture Solutions
Venkat is a champion for inclusion both at Accenture India and beyond. He was the Pride programme sponsor for the past three years for Accenture in India and has shared his personal story across the company, led an ally campaign with the LGBT+ Ally Network and steered LGBT+ Leaders Learning Sessions.
Additionally, he has led the inclusive Internship Program, which aims to build a talent pool of trans candidates through on the job learning and networking.
Venkat is an active speaker and uses his platform and influence to drive LGBT+ inclusion by addressing topics such as the psychological safety of LGBT+ employees and energising India’s young changemakers to create a culture of true equality.
James Miller, chief people officer, GBG
James Miller is chair of be/yourself, GBG’s Inclusion and Diversity Network and is executive sponsor of the Sexual and Gender Identities Chapter.
Miler implements webinars, company wide Q&A sessions and uses his platform to create blogs to drive conversation and change for the LGBT+ community.
He recognises the difference he can make through his role and by sharing his expertise and tools to drive change as well as his values-driven approach to create a workplace where everyone can succeed. Externally, James is an avid speaker, sharing both his professional and personal perspectives to effect change. Additionally, Miller mentors LGBT+ colleagues, is an active member of the HRC and is a member of McKinsey’s Alliance group of prominent LGBT+ leaders.
Neil Piper, chief people officer, KFC UK & Ireland
Neil Piper is a founding member and executive sponsor of Kentucky Fried Pride, KFC UK’s LGBT+ Affinity Network.
He has spearheaded measurement and reporting across the company to improve D&I engagement, launched company-wide D&I learning journeys, is a committed mentor, a champion of progressive policy changes across the business and uses his platform and influence within the company to effect long-term change.
Piper is a driving force behind KFC’s inclusion through external partnerships, has fundraised for the Kaleidoscope Trust and, as an avid speaker, has appeared on many inclusion-specific panels including one for Kerry Foods Global LGBT+ ERG. Piper believes that inclusion is everyone’s genuine responsibility, and as a visible, vocal and out gay leader in the corporate world is a role model to many.
Luiz Felipe Centeno Ferraz, partner and tax lawyer, Mattos Filho Veiga Filho Marrey Jr e Quiroga Advogados
Luiz Felipe Centeno Ferraz is the sponsor of Mfriendly, Mattos Filho’s LGBT+ employee affinity group, which strives to create an inclusive workplace for all.
Since it was created in São Paulo, Ferraz has led these efforts across Rio de Janeiro, Brasilia and Campinas, promoting greater coverage for LGBT+ inclusion within the firm’s Brazilian offices.
As a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, he is also tasked with overseeing the programme’s strategy as well as promoting the benefits of intersectionality across the business. Externally, Ferraz organises events, represents Mfriendly across Brazil, and uses his platform and influence on effect change across the industry.
Due to his commitment to leading LGBT+ inclusion in the workplace, he is a member of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Advisory board of the Thomson Reuters Institute.
Vincent Francois, regional chief audit executive, Societe Generale
Vincent Francois founded the first LGBT+ Network in French banking a decade ago and has spent his career paving a way for inclusion. As former chair and newly-appointed senior executive sponsor of Societe Generale’s (GLE.PA) UK Pride and Allies Network, Francois is at the forefront of D&I at his organisation leading initiatives and implementing strategies to drive change for LGBT+ employees.
Francois is also an active member of Societe Generale’s Global Pride and Allies Network. Externally, he is an avid speaker and consistently leverages his platform to inspire and motivate others to drive change and create businesses where the LGBT+ community can succeed.
Carmen Mueller, managing director, International Corporates, Standard Chartered Bank
A champion of inclusion, Carmen Mueller is the co-founder of Standard Chartered Bank’s (STAN.L) D&I council and co-chair of the local SC Pride chapter – the bank’s LGBT+ ERG with which she has led the organisation of events amongst SCB’s Continental Europe Teams for LGBT+ topics.
She is leading the way with a focus on recognising and realising the value that lies in openness and inclusivity in the business context. She is also a member of SCB’s Global SC Pride Steering Committee, where she has helped drive the global adoption of pronouns to drive greater inclusion and uses her platform to advocate for the LGBT+ community.
Externally, Mueller uses her social media platforms and influence as a role model in business to promote LGBT+ businesses in Frankfurt, mentor’s LGBT+ talent and hosts community events e.g. together with the local business school for the LGBT+ and Allies community to network.
Mark Baker, senior vice president, public policy & government affairs, Warner Music Group
Mark Baker is a visible and vocal role model both within Warner Music Group (WMG) and beyond. He is the executive sponsor of Q the Music, WMG’s LGBT+ ERG, and is the LGBT+ representative on the global DEI Commitments Committee and global DEI Council.
His work includes strengthened partnerships with the HRC and the Victory Fund, adopting new gender transition guidelines, leading WMG to join the business coalition supporting the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) and has led WMG’s participation in the HRC Corporate Equality Index.
Additionally, has been listed among the top, out LGBT+ Music Executives by Billboard Magazine, and uses his platform to inspire others to drive change.
Bradford Pollard, managing director, private banker, Citi
As a senior private banker at Citi, Bradford Pollard inspires LGBT+ leaders to live authentically and drive progress. He is committed to embedding inclusion as seen through his work as executive committee member for Citi’s Institutional Clients Group Pride Council, co-founder and current business sponsor of Citi's Pride Network in California and as a senior mentor for the Pride Mentorship Programme.
He also serves LGBT+ individuals with customised private banking strategies to seek to preserve their wealth legacy.
Pollard's launched Citi’s first public 'Global Pride Dialogues' series, which is open to clients, partners and colleagues to address the changing landscape of the LGBT+ community.
He was also a key developer of internal and external campaigns during the 50th anniversary of Stonewall and was instrumental in the creation of the first ever Leadership Development Program for LGBT+ individuals at Citi.
Pollard's steadfast commitment to the community began over 20 years ago and his work includes addressing homelessness and youth educational fulfillment for LGBT+ individuals.
Namrata Iyer, head of financial crime capability – group financial crime, HSBC
Namrata Iyer's passion stems from a need to provide a platform to diverse individuals and the importance of intersectionality in fostering a world where everyone can succeed.
She is a member of HSBC’s (HSBA.L) Pride, Balance and BAME ERGs through which she has led discussions and events focusing on the trials of starting a family as a member of the LGBT+ community, has championed the need for inclusive language in the workplace and has been a mentor to LGBT+ people of colour within the business.
Iyer is a vocal and active member in her local community and externally has championed the formation of a local LGBT+ community groups, as well as mentoring LGBT+ students from India.
Craig Beaumont, chief of external affairs, Federation of Small Businesses
Craig Beaumont is a driver of inclusion both within the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) and beyond. He leverages his expertise and shares tools to foster inclusion within his organisation through his active participation in the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion steeringgGroup, a sub-group of the FSB Board.
Beaumont understands and values the importance of visible role models and externally has worked on the UKgovernment’s first SME LGBT+ roundtable and has led a campaign with human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell and his Foundation surrounding the challenges faced by LGBT+ venues and spaces in relation to insurance.
Beaumont is passionate about supporting LGBT+ businesses across the country and ensuring that LGBT+ business owners have the opportunity to succeed.
Pippa Dale, head of Global Markets Roadshows, BNP Paribas
Pippa Dale is the Founding Ambassador of LBTQWomen.org and a member of the UK Pride Steering Committee. In her capacity at BNP Paribas, and beyond, Dale is a driving force for inclusion and uses her platform to advocate for the LGBT+ community.
Externally, Dale has led fundraising initiatives for GiveOut and worked with L’Autre Cercle on the conference for Human Rights at World Pride.
Keshav Suri, executive director, Lalit Suri Hospitality Group and founder, Keshav Suri Foundation
A committed advocate for inclusion, Keshav Suri is the sponsor of Lalit Suri Hospitality Group’s Pure Love ERG and in his capacity as the organisation’s executive director seeks to promote D&I across India’s hospitality industry.
Suri's work is routinely studied and has led to the group winning multiple awards for their efforts to drive inclusion.
The Lalit Suri Hospitality Group has also sponsored scholarships for LGBT+ students in India, and the Group’s Night Club, Kitty Su, is a prominent safe space for the LGBT+ community in India.
Suri is also integral to discussions with the state government through his role on the FICCI D&I Committee on providing jobs, healthcare and security to the LGBT+ community following the pandemic. Keshav is an active speaker and uses his platform and influence to create safe workplaces where the LGBT+ community can be embraced and empowered.
Adrien & Pierre Gaubert, chief marketing officer and CEO, myGwork, the LGBTQ+ Business Community
Twin brothers Adrien (CMO) and Pierre (CEO) Gaubert founded myGwork in 2015 after personally facing discrimination at work. myGwork is now the go-to business platform for LGBTQ+ professionals, students, inclusive employers, and anyone who believes in workplace equality.
Both Pierre and Adrien consistently leverage their expertise and knowledge to support the LGBTQ+ business community and promote LGBTQ+ talent in business teams and organisations across the world.
They have formed a global network of over 250 inclusive employers to help advertise over 80,000 jobs for thousands of LGBTQ+ professionals; have overseen the creation of a network of inclusive training sessions that are now successfully delivered to employee resource groups; and offer advice to employers on best practice/policies on diversity, equity and inclusion, LGBTQ+ recruitment and retention, workplace wellbeing and LGBTQ+ employee mental health matters.
As visible role models both Adrien and Pierre undertake speaking opportunities, host virtual Pride conferences and have created #WorkPride & #WorkFair – the largest online LGBT+ job fair, alongside a platform that offers their members a safe space to connect with inclusive employers, find jobs, mentors, professional events, news and more.
Lara Shewchuk, chief operating officer, Architech
Lara Shewchuk is a driving force for inclusion at Architech and has established sustainability and D&I as a strategic pillar guiding the growth of the company.
Shewchuk and the Architech leadership team prioritise pay and promotion equity for women, and have increased women in technical roles well above tech industry standards.
Shewchuk is the founder and executive sponsor of Architech’s Inclusion Council, Architech’s Build a Better Future Program, Pride & Allies Committee and the Women@Architech Network.
She has established key partnerships with Pride at Work Canada and Black Professionals in Tech Network to drive top-down awareness and safe-conversation throughout the company. Alongside these internal initiatives, Shewchuk is a member of Pride At Work Canada’s Thought Leadership advisory committee, providing recommendations on overall programming, educational and thought leadership initiatives.
Among the many LGBTQ2SA+ organisations that she supports, Shewchuk and her partner are long-standing Leadership Council donors of The 519.
Julie Dickson, investment director, Capital Group
Julie Dickson is the global co-chair at CG Pride and is focused on expanding CG’s LGBT+ advocacy to the wider community. Within her organisation, she is key to driving an atmosphere of positive change. She has organised events for Pride, hosted virtual celebrations for LGBT+ history month, prolifically spoken up about coming out at work during Lesbian Visibility Week, and most recently brought UK Black Pride into conversation with CG’s internal communities-‘CG Pride’ and "Capital Associates of African Descent".
Externally, Dickson is a major donor to OutRight Action International, a supporter of the Albert Kennedy Trust to combat LGBT+ youth homelessness, and she holds a seat on the leadership team of InterInvest which helps further LGBT+ interests across the investment industry.
Dickson is driven not just by her determination to provide the best investment solutions, but also a commitment to be seen, heard and included. It is through this passion that Julie drives inclusion in her role at Capital Group and beyond.
David Shelley, CEO, Hachette UK
As CEO of Hachette, David Shelley is committed to driving inclusion at his organisation and beyond. He founded a working party, now the D&I Program ‘Changing the Story’, to address and improve recruitment, retention and the publishing process.
The LGBT+ Network was borne from this, supporting both LGBT+ employees at Hachette and helps to ensure that publishing represents LGBT+ people across the UK. Hachette’s LGBT+ Employee network has partnered with Hachette UK authors to drive inclusion and LGBT+ narratives and celebrates the contribution of LGBT+ authors to literature.
Crawford Prentice, head of wealth & personal banking, HSBC Bank Malta
Crawford Prentice is the co-chair of HSBC Malta’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee and a member of HSBC Pride. As the most senior LGBT+ Executive in Malta, Prentice has actively supported the promotion of the LGBT+ D&I agenda, has been a speaker at numerous HSBC Pride events and works closely with Regional teams to collaborate on LGBT+ initiatives.
He proactively holds D&I discussions across the business, including dedicated LGBT+ sessions, to ensure that inclusion remains a top priority. Externally, Prentice has engaged with the local community and was enormously proud for HSBC Bank Malta to become the principal sponsor of Malta Pride 2021.
Crawford is both a passionate advocate for an inclusive culture and believer in the importance of diverse role models to inspire the next generation of LGBT+ business leaders.
Elaine Montilla, assistant VP and CIO for information technology, The Graduate Center, CUNY
In addition to her role at The Graduate Center, CUNY, Elaine Montilla is the founder of 5xminority whose mission is to elevate the voices of all underrepresented minorities in tech.
Elaine Montilla is a proud member of the LGBT+ community and is passionate about amplifying and advocating for the community through business and beyond.
She is a prominent speaker on D&I in the Tech community and is a TEDx speaker who focuses of providing support, education and fostering a culture of acceptance.
As one of few out LGBT+ executives within the CUNY system, Montilla understands the importance of and values the responsibility of being a vocal and visible role model, leveraging her expertise and experiences to drive change and motivate others.
Sunil Daswani, global head of securities lending, Standard Chartered Bank
Sunil Daswani is a champion of inclusion and leverages his influence and platform as the global head of securities lending at Standard Chartered Bank to drive change.
He writes thoughtful articles surrounding LGBT+ inclusion, which are available to all employees, and is a member of the LGBT+ Network.
Externally, Daswani is setting up a foundation called Proud to Be Proud, supporting people to embrace their authentic selves and helping them overcome barriers to progression.
Vivienne Ming, CEO, Socos Labs
As CEO of Socos Labs, Vivienne Ming encourages equitable and inclusive practices, from hiring through to retention. As co-founder and chief scientist for Dionysus, much of her work centres on D&I.
Most recently, Ming led the implementation of the Inclusion Impact Index to measure the impact of LGBT+ high-growth entrepreneurs, measuring both existing contributions and disparities in achievement caused by barriers that the LGBT+ community faces.
Ming is a member of many boards focused on LGBT+ inclusion spanning from business to law and believes that "if you want to lead an amazing life, give it to someone else", thus exemplifying her passion for inclusion.
Javier Constante, president, Latin America and Brazil, Dow
Javier Constante is keenly aware of the responsibility he has as an influential LGBT+ executive and uses his position to advocate for others and focuses his attention on challenges faced by the LGBT+ community.
He is an active member of Dow’s President Inclusion Council and champions diversity and inclusion as a key part of Dow’s Latin American Strategy.
Externally, Constante serves on the board of the Brazilian organisation Fórum de Empresas e Direitos LGBTI+ and is currently leading a public policy initiative to ensure a better and more inclusive environment across Brazil.
Maeve DuVally, managing director, corporate communications, Goldman Sachs
Maeve DuVally is an active member of the Goldman Sachs LGBT+ inclusion network and co-chairs the network’s community engagement pillar. DuVally's work has led to the network partnering with various external organisations focused on LGBT+ inclusion including the Human Rights Campaign.
As an out leader in the firm, DuVally recognises the value and importance of being a vocal role model for the firm’s LGBT+ employee population, and after publicly coming out in 2019 has been able to use her platform to effect change.
Externally, DuVally is an active board member of Anchor Health Initiative focused on LGBT+ health and is a volunteer at the Ali Forney Center, a New York-based non-profit which proves shelter for homeless LGBT+ youths.
Jaime Robleto, judge of appeal of criminal sentences, Judicial Branch of Costa Rica
Within the judicial power, Jaime Robleto collaborates with the secretary of gender and inclusion and believes in the power of visible role models to effect change and inspire the next generation of LGBT+ leaders.
Robleto believes deeply in authenticity and has strived to lead an honest life to help others do the same.
He continues to write articles for national and international media aimed at elevating understanding surrounding the LGBT+ community.
Dinesh Bhugra, professor emeritus mental health & cultural diversity, deputy chair, Tavistock & Portman Foundation NHS Trust
Dinesh Bhugra is a prominent out leader within the healthcare industry and uses his platform and influence to drive change.
He is the current chair of a board level committee focused on inclusion and is an active member of the LGBT+ Network at the Hospital Trust.
Bhugra is a mentor and supports junior LGBT+ employees both at the Tavistock & Portman Foundation NHS and internationally, being sought out by mentees from Guatemala, Lithuania and Georgia. He also chaired the Lancet Psychiatry Commission on the mental health of LGBT+ individuals.
George Arison, founder and co-CEO, Shift
George Arison is the founder and co-CEO of Shift, a rapidly-growing auto e-commerce company transforming the multibillion dollar used car industry.
In 2020, Arison became one of the first, if not the first, openly gay founder to take a company public in the US. As an accomplished entrepreneur, he is committed to using his platform, expertise and story to advocate for the LGBT+ community and beyond.
At Shift, he fosters an inclusive culture by advocating for diversity and equity from the top-down. Shift is one of less than 300 public US companies with gender parity on its board and investing in employee wellbeing with top-class health benefits.
In 2021, Arison co-founded Belong Capital, a women-led SPAC with two openly gay board members, to drive diversity in investments and better outcomes for technology-enabled businesses. Through his journey as a dad and openly gay CEO, Arison strives to show aspiring LGBT+ leaders that success is possible while being authentically yourself.
Kathy Teo, founder and CEO, Xpointo Media
As founder and CEO of Xpointo Media, Kathy is committed to driving D&I in her organisation. Since 2017, Xpointo Media has been a business sponsor of Singapore’s Pink Dot and Kathy is one of the appointed business leaders driving the Red Dot for Pink Dot campaign, advocating for Pink Dot’s mission and encouraging companies in Singapore to join the quest for LGBT+ equality.
Kathy serves as a board director of OutRight Action International, a leading international queer human rights organisation, as one of two Asia-based board members. She founded Bridge the Digital Divide, a ground-up initiative bringing digital accessibility to low-income families, migrant workers, trans students and other marginalised groups in Singapore.
Kathy is part of The McKinsey Alliance, a working group of senior C-Suite leaders from around the world, brought together by McKinsey, to address D&I issues affecting key sectors and geographies. Kathy has spoken and participated in various panels on themes of equality and non-discrimination for the LGBTIQ+ community.
Tamara Littleton, founder and CEO, The Social Element
Tamara Littleton is passionate about inclusion and through her role as CEO of the Social Element, using her platform and influence to drive change and improve the opportunities for others.
Within her business, she encouraged the formation of the company’s LGBT+ Resource Group, ensures that all employees display pronouns as intentional and outward forms of solidarity and elevates the visibility of LGBT+ employees and allies within the business across social media.
Externally, Litteton is a passionate volunteer and enthusiastic speaker, sharing her insight with the LGBTQIA+ community. From her involvement with Series Q, a network to support LGBTQI people at UK start-ups, to Lesbians Who Tech as a speaker, Littleton instills the belief in others that their perspectives and experiences are valuable.
Patrick Caldwell, COO, FundApps
In joining FundApps, Patrick Caldwell was the company’s first out LGBT+ leader and since then he has used his platform and influence to drive LGBT+ inclusion within the business and beyond.
Caldwell has designed and implemented parental leave inclusive of all gender identities, has facilitated company-wide discussions around gender identity and sexuality stereotypes, and speaks widely and openly about his personal journey while sharing insights and practical tips for others to follow.
Caldwell's prior experience working in the mining industry before his career move to FundApps was a motivator in his decision to live proudly and authentically. He aspires to effect change for the LGBT+ community and uses his position as a vocal and visible ally to do so.
Christopher Kenna, CEO, Brand Advance
Christopher Kenna believes deeply in authenticity and the importance of bringing one’s whole self to work, which are values he has entrenched through his role at Brand Advance.
He is a member of the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) D&I Task Force, director of industry Bodies at the Conscious Advertising Network and has been shortlisted for awards such as Diversity Hero at the LGBT+ Awards.
Kenna writes articles to help inform and educate others about the challenges faced by the LGBT+ community in business and beyond.
Lynn Bertholet, executive chairperson, ÉPICÈNE
EPICENE’s aim is to support and employ people from the LGBT+ community who are struggling with employment due to their gender identity and or sexual orientation, in order to boost their careers.
Bertholet is personally committed to driving change for the LGBT+ community in Geneva and utilities her platform and expertise to pave the way for others.
Externally, she is a sought after thought leader surrounding LGBT+ inclusion and has spoken on various panels, written articles and appeared on radio shows to discuss and drive forward LGBT+ inclusion.
Samir Chabab, head of international, marketing & communications, Index Exchange
Samir Chabab is a champion for inclusion at Index Exchange, and through his role drives positive change for the LGBT+ community within the company. He is the co-founder of the company’s first affinity group, Pride at Index, and uses this platform to advocate for Index's LGBT+ employees through events and the creation of safe spaces to connect and support each other.
With intersectionality in mind, he has also led various initiatives highlighting Black LGBT+ trailblazers, both internally and externally.
Chabab has written about his own experiences and the intersection of his identity, shared best practices and tools to support LGBT+ employees internally and externally, and values the importance of visible and vocal role models for others.
Vanessa Pegueros, chief trust and security officer, OneLogin
Vanessa Pegueros is the founder and lead of OneLogin’s ERG for people of colour and advocates for the advancement and promotion of high potential diverse talent.
Pegueros grew up in a diverse household and understands the value and vibrancy of diversity and brings this into her work. She is a frequent panellist and is a board member of BECU, advocating for underrepresented groups and board diversity.
Pegueros is also an active member of Pipeline Angels and a founding member of the Women of Color Capital Collective, committed to increasing the number of women of colour as fund managers.
Renato Camargo, country manager & CMO, RecargaPay
Renato Camargo is the Leader of RecargaPay’s Diversity, Inclusion and Representation Committee and is responsible for implementing and promoting inclusive practices across the organisation.
Through his work, RecargaPay has increased the LGBT+ representation across the entire company. Additionally, as leader of the committee, Camargo has instigated monthly debates and forums, and promoted the importance of inclusion trainings ranging from recruitment to the value of mentoring diverse talent.
Camargo has advocated for the LGBT+ community externally, contributing to discussions and writing articles to help inform and educate others.
Neil Bentley-Gockmann, CEO, WorldSkills UK
Neil Bentley-Gockmann leads the organisation’s actions for inclusion. WorldSkills UK tracks data for LGBT+ youth within their training programs to inform product development and improve outcomes, has established an ED&I business advisory group to support their work and has improved overall boardroom LGBT diversity to 18%, up from 9% in 2020.
Externally, Bentley-Gockmann uses his expertise and influence to drive change through speaking on panels and writing blogs about LGBT+ inclusion that are shared across his network.
Additionally, he was recently appointed as a board member of the Whitehall and Industry Group and has been asked to support its work on diversity.