Diversity & Inclusion Partnership Presents 6th Annual Summit for Business Professionals

posted on Thursday, September 15, 2016 in Blog

The Diversity & Inclusion Partnership of the Alliance & Chamber is presenting the 2016 Executive Diversity & Inclusion Summit. This is the 6th year for this educational event for owners and managers of businesses and organizations of all sizes. The Summit will be held on October 14, in Winter Hall Atrium and McKinstry Student Center at Allen College, 1990 Heath St, Waterloo, from 8:00 am to 12:30 pm, with registration beginning at 7:30 am.

Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare-Iowa is the premier sponsor for the event.

The Executive Diversity & Inclusion Summit is designed to strengthen the Cedar Valley Economic region by providing tools and information to implement effective inclusive practices. The Summit provides attendees a concentrated and focused experience with multiple activities including a keynote speaker and a dramatic presentation. Additionally, two workshops are offered: Generations in the Workplace, and Employing Immigrants – What Every HR Professional Should Know. Lunch, provided by Cedar Valley Society of Human Resource Managers (SHRM), will be served during the workshops.

Attendees include CEOs, Human Resource directors and upper management of businesses and organizations of all sizes.

Two keynote presentations will be given during the morning session. Diversity & Inclusion Strategist James Wright will present Moving the Race Conversation Forward. Wright will explore the changing face of America and how this will affect our workforce and political climate; how to interpret US Census data and proactively begin discussing racial differences openly, honestly and respectfully; and will provide keys to introducing inclusive concepts that are useable by all leaders, managers and employees.

Theater instructor and director Andy Paris of the Tectonic Theater Project will introduce the company's latest project, Uncommon Sense: An Exploration of Autism using Theatrical Form. The project is rooted in Iowa stories about Iowa families and communities affected by life on the Autism spectrum. This three-year collaboration began with interviews of Iowans. Their stories have been woven into a theatrical play. The play will premier January 21 and 22, 2017 at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center on the University of Northern Iowa Campus in Cedar Falls.

Andrew Duff is a theater major and recent college graduate and has been working with Tectonic Theater on the project. Andrew, will share his employment experiences as an individual on the Autism spectrum.

Also during the Summit, the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber will announce the call for nominations and application processes for the Diversity & Inclusion Awards to be presented at the 2017 Annual Celebration, March 30, 2017 at the Park Place Event Center, Cedar Falls.

These awards will be given for outstanding contribution by a business or organization for leadership in creating and strengthening an environment of diversity and inclusion in the workplace culture, business practices and in the community. Deadline for nominations is November 15, 2016. A nomination form can filled out online at

Continuing education credits for human resources professionals are available for Summit attendees. There is no cost to attend, but registration is requested no later than September 30. Workshops details, event agenda, speaker bios and registration can be found at, by contacting Danny Laudick, Director of Talent Solutions at, or by calling 319-232-1156.


The Diversity & Inclusion Partnership is a workforce initiative of the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance & Chamber. The purpose of the Partnership is to strengthen the Cedar Valley economy by collaborating with businesses to promote inclusion and to make sure all residents have the opportunity to benefit from a thriving Cedar Valley economy. The Partnership is led by a taskforce of volunteers dedicated to promoting the business case and positive impact of diversity and inclusive practices in the Cedar Valley workforce. More information can be found at, by contacting Danny Laudick, Director of Talent Solutions at, or by calling 319-232-1156.