DE&I Impact Leaders Share Strategies for Aligning Actions to Words


This is the year of confronting how unspoken racism and unconscious bias permeates our social, economic and business lives. In response, the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion communications role has emerged as an essential management discipline. The need for action is clear. The hour is now. The challenge remains: What is our role to advance the business case for inclusivity, and how can communicators spearhead purposeful change that acknowledges inequities and strives to address them from the inside out? Or more plainly, how can communications professionals help to build anti-racist and inclusive organizations?

In a brisk one-hour Zoom roundtable, an expert panel of audacious thought leaders on the front lines of reshaping workforce DE&I practices and empowerment will share their experience-laden roadmap to meaningful change. In our world of COVID-isolation and polarizing politics, what are the steps and tools necessary to achieve enlightenment and translate it into desired business outcomes? What organizations or brands set the highest bar for “walking the talk?” How do we as communicators advance these uncomfortable conversations with the C-suite and HR? And how can we evolve to be ally organizations in our quest to build durable bridges that better our society?

This program will benefit the PRSA Foundation, an independent 501c3 nonprofit that strives to advance diversity and inclusivity for the public relations profession through scholarships and research to support practitioners and employers.

Register at Eventbrite.


October  19, 2020
12 noon – 1:00 pm



  • Carole Copeland Thomas, MBA, CDMP, CITM (Panelist): Speaker, Conference Facilitator, Author & Trainer
  • Peggy Jablonski, Ed.D  (Panelist): President/Coach, The Jablonski Group
  • Rashaad Lambert (Panelist): Dir. of Culture & Community, Forbes and Strategic Partner of Social Impact, TD Bank
  • Ed Patterson (Panelist): Head of Global Communications, LGBTQ & DE&I Strategist, Hill+Knowlton Strategies
  • Loring Barnes, APR, Fellow PRSA (Moderator): CCO, Clarity Communications Group
  • Kelley Chunn (PRSA Boston Diversity Chair): Principal, Kelley Chunn & Associates


Carole Copeland Thomas, MBA, CDMP, CITM (Panelist): Speaker, Conference Facilitator, Author & Trainer

Website 1 | Website 2Twitter

The demand for Ms. Copeland Thomas’s wisdom on diversity and inclusion is evidenced by her globetrotting passport by invitation of multinational brands and the numerous media platforms – books, her podcast, blogs, webinars, newsletter, YouTube, coaching, TEDx, global conferences – through which she champions how to change the mindset of both organizations and individuals. Our program precedes her 2020 Multicultural Symposium Series Global Summit (Nov. 5-6): The Imperative of DEI on the Midst of a Triple Pandemic. Hear her once and you become emboldened to broaden the racial and cultural composition employers for the promise for measurable and rewarding gains. The Northeastern MBA grad has accrued as much industry recognition as she has professional certifications in all realms of multiculturalism and leadership. Her impressive expanded bio is worthy of your time.


Peggy Jablonski, Ed.D  (Panelist): President/Coach, The Jablonski Group

Website | LinkedIn

In 2020, this career university administrator turned consultant embarked on a compelling personal journey of racial awakening – the Cape Cod Camino Way Project – to inform her own predilections through the lessons she unearthed through local non-white history. This proved to be transformative for her work as a leadership coaching, particularly for universities with global student and faculty profiles. In the context of small group work, Peggy will share insights for an emerging blueprint in how organizations can gain from listening and learning about bias and racial history. In addition to coaching certifications and leadership tenures at Brown Univ., MIT, UNC at Chapel Hill, and her alma mater, the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, she earned her Ed.D from Boston University.


Rashaad Lambert (Panelist): Dir. of Culture & Community, Forbes and Strategic Partner of Social Impact, TD Bank

Website | LinkedIn | Twitter

In an industry where diversity and racism have become part of the narrative among high-profile pro athletes, Rashaad has been immersed in the creating pathways for addressing racism, equity and inclusion for their success during and outside of competition. Today, he wears two hats: as Strategic Partner of Social Impact for TD Bank and as Forbes’ Director of Culture & Community, through which he leads diversity initiatives targeting entrepreneurs. Through his Forbes’ The Culture #CultureTalks platform on Instagram, Rashaad has galvanized a collaborative online thinktank committed to improving access to more revenue and impact opportunities for communities that are marginalized when confronted with uphill climb against bias or discrimination. The multicultural engagement inroads made by this proud Philadelphia native and Temple University alumnus have been recognized by the NAACP, Forbes, the US Congress. He holds the distinguishing Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification for coaching and organizational change leadership.


Ed Patterson (Panelist): Head of Global Communications, LGBTQ & DE&I Strategist, Hill+Knowlton Strategies

WebsiteLinkedIn | Twitter

Ed has provided cultural and organizational communications counsel to C-suites and boards of multinational corporations for more than 25 years, through which he was an early champion of diversity and inclusivity as operational guideposts for brand growth and workforce success. Today he is the lead media ambassador of global PR agency stalwart Hill+Knowlton, with a role that canvases news from its 80 offices across 40 countries. He recently announced H+K’s hiring of the global WPP’s company’s first top DE&I global and US officers. Ed is working toward his MBA from the S.I. Newhouse School at Syracuse University and is an alumnus of the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.


Loring Barnes, APR, Fellow PRSA (Moderator): CCO, Clarity Communications Group

Website| LinkedIn | Twitter

Loring has been leading bold action campaigns, guiding M&A readiness and navigating crises for Fortune brands, government and start-ups for more than 30 years. She founded Clarity as a WBE-certified marketing and PR consultancy coming out of 9/11. The realities of “separate and unequal” became personal for her in high school when a parent’s job took her family to live in Johannesburg during apartheid. Her multicultural and multilanguage campaigns have earned recognition, to include by the White House at a United Nations Special Assembly. Loring visited the Equal Justice Museum in Montgomery, AL within weeks of its 2018 opening to fortify her historical learning on racism. She is a past PRSA Boston president and was inducted into the PRSA College of Fellows in 2017.  She was the catalyst for PRSA’s increased efforts on disparities for women in PR’s executive ranks. Loring is only the fifth woman in 135 years to be elected to her town’s top government post and led a successful ballot initiative for the State Legislature to permanently revise the board’s name and all town charter references to be gender neutral. She is an “Alumni to Watch” award recipient of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and university lecturer.


Kelley Chunn (PRSA Boston Diversity Chair): Principal, Kelley Chunn & Associates

Website | LinkedIn | Twitter

Few of us can say that a major city has named a day for us, but May 1st  as “Kelley Chunn Day” in Boston recognized the special brand of prescient multicultural communications consulting that she has delivered for more than 30 years. The clients of Kelley Chunn & Associates, a state-certified DBE communications consultancy, have included the Nigerian Television Authority, the Roxbury Cultural District and the City of Boston Business Disparity Study. Her journey has included a trip to the White House where she and other  leaders from around the country advised former President Barack Obama on community and small business development.  Kelley has enlightened, educated and advocated for inclusion and equity, long before it became an urgent national conversation. As a result, the accolades she has earned are many and impressive, to include multiple “career recognition” awards by respected PR and business organizations, including PRSA Boston. She serves on its board of directors among many others and has taught at several area universities too, including Simmons University, from which she earned her Masters in Communications Management.

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Event Details

October 19, 2020
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm