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Diversity Leadership Fellowship
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About the program

In a global and regional economy, embracing diversity is an imperative. The Diversity Leadership Fellowship program is committed to the professional development of FOCUS programs alumni and friends who demonstrate leadership potential and a strong drive to positively impact the community in areas of diversity, inclusion and equity.


Purpose, goals and outcomes


·         To deepen understanding of diversity and inclusion in all its complexity

·         To complete a personal diversity assessment of  behaviors

·         To provide tools to lead change in communities and organizations

·         To build strategies for interrupting racism

·         To create allies for this work



The goal of the DLF program is to develop a community of leaders who guide their organizations and community in creating a truly inclusive and prosperous community to live, learn, work and play.


The DLF curriculum addresses the dimensions of diversity, inclusion and equity in a three-tiered approach of theory, application and experience. The program will help participants develop mindful initiatives and enhance ongoing efforts that support their organization and communities.




·         Deeper knowledge of diversity, inclusion and equity

·         Awareness of one’s own biases

·         Valuable skills needed to serve organizations and communities in areas of diversity

·         Empower participants to champion the inherent value of diversity and justice

·         Strong relationships among participants of diverse backgrounds

Session Topics

The DLF focuses on the following topics:

·         History and privilege of race and place

·         Race, ethnic and cultural identity

·         Dynamics of privilege and power

·         Leading and managing diversity initiatives

·         Courageous conversations: Strategies for interrupting racism


Seminar 1: History and Impact of Race and Place

In order to move in the direction of dismantling racism, one must first understand the historical context from which it sprung. In this session, participants will explore the history and impact of race, place and racism in the United States with special attention paid to St. Louis’ history.

Community Immersion

Participants will enjoy an eye-opening greater St. Louis sites tour.


Seminar 2:  Diversity, Inclusion & Cultural Competence

While race is a social construct, we are each shaped by our own experiences as well. Participants will explore the concept of racial identity and psychological connection to their racial label, and will learn about various models for racial identity spanning the African American, Latino, Native American, White, Bi-Racial and Asian experience.


           Best Practices for Designing & Implementing Your Organization’s Diversity and Inclusion


           Participants will be given step-by-step instructions, worksheets and examples to help them

          analyze and track the impact of diversity initiatives to mobilize an organization or community for  

          strategic culture change.


Seminar 3: Moving Forward: Tools for Having Courageous Conversations

Participants will gain tools on how to interrupt racism in their personal lives, workplaces and communities and discuss strategies for taking collective action. By going beyond individual racism to examine systemic and structural racism, participants will gain the tools necessary to influence their organizational or community culture in a lasting and meaningful way.



The DLF program is suitable to professionals interested in developing a better understanding of themselves, their decision-making approach and what makes them and their organization “tick” when it comes to diversity and inclusion. Past participants included:


·    Diversity and inclusion practitioners

·    Human resource personnel

·    Organization development practitioners

·    Recruiters

·    Counselors

·    Educators

·    Heads of departments/divisions

·    Pastors

The goal of the program is to have diverse classes; therefore, selection is based in part on race, ethnicity, gender, age and background. Class size is limited to a total of 15 participants.

session dates

Spring 2017

Thursday, April 20, 2017          8:30am - 5:00pm

Friday, April, 21, 2017                8:30am - 5:00pm

Saturday, April 22, 2017           8:30am - 5:00pm



The Diversity Leadership Fellowship program fee is $500 and includes breakfast and lunch, each day. 


How to apply

Apply now for the spring 2017 class! The deadline to apply is Friday, March 17, 2017.


For more information

Carla Hayes, Diversity Leadership Fellowship Director

Email | Tel: (314) 657-4024


Additional Resources

Download the Diversity Leadership Fellowship Info Sheet


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