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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Summit 2023

September 20, 2023 8:00 AM - 12:30 PM (EDT)



Online registration is currently closed, but walk-ins are encouraged.   Please go to the registration table outside the King Street Ballroom upon arrival. 

The 2023 Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Summit provides an opportunity to learn new approaches and best practices to help elevate your organization’s diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies. Content presented will equip employers with tools to promote a greater sense of belonging within the workplace and region as a whole.

Participants will have an opportunity to engage with keynote speakers and panelists through presentations and audience Q&A. Participants will also receive a copy of the book Inclusive 360, Proven Solutions for an Equitable Organization, by Bernadette Smith.


8:00 a.m.

8:30 a.m.

8:45 a.m.

9:45 a.m.

10:00 a.m.

11:00 a.m.

11:15 a.m.

12:20 p.m.

Check-in and Morning Refreshments

Welcome & Opening Remarks

Opening Keynote


Panel Discussion


Closing Keynote

Closing Remarks

Opening Keynote Presentation:  

Radical Change Through Open HiringTM
Removing Barriers to Employment

What if your business used its most impactful lever, the power to hire, to provide opportunity and change lives at the same time? During this session, you’ll discover best practices and lessons learned from Joe Kenner, as he discusses how Open HiringTM removes barriers to employment, increases loyalty and decreases employee turnover, all while transforming company culture.

Joe Kenner is President and CEO of Greyston Foundation and Greyston Bakery. His innovative leadership, experiences, and expertise in collaborating with diverse stakeholders has helped Greyston deliver millions of dollars in economic impact through job placements and expanded employer and service provider relationships.

As leader of one of the county’s most well-known social enterprises, Joe frequently shares his expertise on purpose-driven businesses, and building a more inclusive economy through employment, workforce development, and social services. He has been featured in a variety of local and national media, including ABC Nightly News, Bloomberg, CNBC, Yahoo Finance, Forbes, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, Quartz and The Journal News. Read Joe's full bio here!

Panel Discussion:  

Intentional Inclusion: Accelerating DEI Through Deliberate Action

Learn from leaders who have helped drive DEI planning and outcomes through intentionality. Insights will be shared in this discussion from panelists representing organizations at various stages of their respective DEI journeys. Guidance will be provided as to how your organization can create a path of inclusion and belonging.       


Tamika Otis | Corporate Responsibility & Community Relations Officer, KeyBank


Dr. Carlos Cotto | Assistant Superintendent of Innovation, Equity and Engagement, Schenectady City School District

Jean Leonard | Chief of Staff, Proctors Collaborative

Yvonne Clark Rogers, SPHR | Director of DEI & Talent, Northeast Shared Services, Price Chopper/Market 32 and Tops Markets

Closing Keynote Presentation:  

More Than WordsDevelop a 360 Approach to Advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging in Your Organization 

Move beyond words and cultivate action by embedding equity and inclusion into your workplace systems and functions. Bernadette Smith will show you how to reap the untapped rewards of DEIB by sharing a proven formula to generate greater outcomes and move the needle on your initiatives. Participants will receive a copy of the award-winning bestseller Inclusive 360: Proven Solutions for an Equitable Organization.

Bernadette Smith is CEO of Equality Institute, a women-owned LGBTQ Certified Business. She is an Author, and a Contributor to the New York Times, Forbes, the Washington Post, and Fast Company. Bernadette has appeared on the Today Show, the BBC, National Public Radio, and CNN. Read Bernadette's full bio here!

The Chamber will do its best to honor the needs of attendees that require reasonable accommodations. For more information and options, please contact Lauren Cognato at

Title Sponsor

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Contact Information

Capital Region Chamber
Name: Lauren Cognato
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