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2020 HR Diversity Roundtable

October 7, 2020 @ 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm


The T. Howard Foundation’s annual HR Diversity Roundtable is designed to support the recruitment and diversity efforts of Human Resources, Talent Acquisition, and Diversity & Inclusion teams. Our goal is to create a safe space for meaningful discussions about the current state of diversity, equity, and inclusion across various industries. We’ll discuss industry trends, recruitment and diversity strategies, and opportunities to collaborate with THF in support of your company’s goals. Click here for a recap of our 2019 event.

We have an amazing panel lined up whose experiences span across media, advertising & marketing, technology, public health science, and higher education

Meet the Panel

Erin Dowell 

Office of Institutional Equity & Access: Program Manager, UT Southwestern Medical Center; and Volunteer: Recruitment Team Diversity and Inclusion Lead, American Red Cross (NTX)

Erin is an equity and inclusion practitioner, investigator, and consultant. A graduate of Xavier University of Louisiana and Tulane Law School, Erin advances organizational cultures of diversity, equity, and inclusion by developing policy, outreach, and education initiatives.

Her work has been featured in The Harvard Business Review, and she has facilitated trainings and workshops on recruitment, inclusive leadership, and unconscious bias.

Marlette Jackson, Ph.D. (she/her) 

Manager of Diversity and Inclusion, UT Southwestern Medical Center; and Advisor: Diversity & Inclusion Recruiting Strategy, ModelExpand

Dr. Marlette Jackson is the Manager of Diversity and Inclusion at UT Southwestern Medical Center and an Advisor for ModelExpand. As a scholar, practitioner, and consultant, Marlette is dedicated to removing barriers and providing equitable opportunity through systemic change.

At UTSW, Marlette oversees the institution’s strategic approach to promoting a culture of inclusion throughprogramming, training, consultation, collaboration with business resource groups and community outreach.  Marlette’s work has been featured in the Harvard Business Review, Forbes, the Journal of Political Behavior, CultureAmp, and Georgetown University Press. She holds her PhD in political science from Stanford University and her BA in political science from Texas A&M University.

Keni Thacker

Founder / Chief Creative Officer, 100 Roses From Concrete

A true exemplar of leadership, Keni Thacker is an award-winning influencer and diversity advocate devoted to outreach programs and mentorship.

In 2017, he was named as one of the 4A’s 100 People That Make Advertising Great. NV Magazine featured him as one of their Champions of Inclusion while also receiving a citation from the City of New York/Borough of Brooklyn for a long record of diversity, inclusion, and mentoring efforts in advertising in 2019.

Keni is also the founder and Chief Creative Officer of 100 Roses From Concrete, a network for men of color in advertising, marketing media, and public relations.

Brian Vaught

SVP – Diversity & Inclusion, Publicis Media; and Member/Board of Directors, T. Howard Foundation 

Brian has over 14 year of experience in the advertising/marketing/
media industry.  During his time in the industry he has held roles in client management, new business development, recruiting, training, corporate social responsibility, and most recently overseeing talent inclusion.

In his role he leads Publicis Media’s US Talent Inclusion practice across its six brands – Starcom, Zenith, Spark Foundry, Blue449, Digitas, and Performics.  Brian leads internal inclusion programs including the Publicis Media Multicultural Talent Pipeline and the agency’s Inclusion Council.  He also serves as a mentor and coach to the company’s business resource groups (BRGs) and drives awareness of professional development experiences. 

Brian is a member of Publicis Groupe’s Talent Engagement & Inclusion Council, a board member for the American Association of Advertising Agencies Diversity & Inclusion Steering Committee, Do The WeRQ, and the T Howard Foundation.  He is a recipient of the 2018 Leadership Excellence Award by the Tri-State National Diversity Council. 

Cornell Verdeja-Woodson

Founder/President, Brave Trainings, LLC

Cornell Verdeja-Woodson earned his B.S. in Communication Management and Design from Ithaca College. After teaching high school English in Atlanta with Teach for America, he went on to earn a masters in higher education and student affairs administration with an emphasis on social justice from the University of Vermont.


In 2015, Cornell founded Brave Trainings LLC, a social justice consulting firm. He has traveled around the country working with higher ed. institutions, non-profit, and for-profit organizations on their efforts to increase diversity and establish strong cultures of belonging. Cornell believes that authentic dialogue, reflection on our identities, an understanding of our history, and direct and consistent action are key to creating a more inclusive environment.



October 7, 2020
1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
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