2023 Houston Virtual NDC Certification Program
Named “World-Class Peacekeeper” and “Everyday Hero” by the Star Tribune, Hanadi is an inclusion consultant, Speaker and Coach. By sharing her experience as a Muslim, Hanadi’s trainings inspire and equip teams and leaders from different cultures to strategically move towards inclusion. Personal, thoughtful and uplifting, she connects with her audience and wins hearts and minds. As a thought-partner to leaders in business, education and government, Hanadi gives voice to communities of color and inspires workers from all identities to come together around shared our humanity. Her engaging workshops and presentations foster understanding and compassion for religion in the workplace, Islam, unconscious bias, minority empowerment and building cohesive teams. She is a Human Rights Award recipient from the city of Eden Prairie for her efforts in dismantling misconceptions about Islam and building bridges of unity. She has been featured in the Star Tribune for her community building projects and had been published The Washington Times, The Huffington Post, The Star Tribune, MinnPost, The Guthrie Theater, The Minneapolis Institute of Art and more recently Cosmopolitan magazine and Pantsuit Nation book. Hanadi joined the US State Department in 2016 as a speaker on social media and social change, and gave the TEDx talk entitled “A Lebanese approach to eliminate prejudice against Muslims” in 2017. Hanadi’s training sessions and keynotes have been featured at the National SHRM Diversity and Inclusion Conference, Leadership Diversity Alliance, The Forum on workplace Inclusion, The Multicultural Women’s National, EmERGe Conference, Serious Play, The National Diplomacy Summit and many others. Her success attests to her caliber and outspokenness. Before coming to the United States, Hanadi was an award-winning creative and communication specialist working across different media, including print and television in the Middle East.
Leon Fraser brings his versatile experience in the corporate, academic, and certification arenas to help organizations diagnose and resolve persistent team performance and interpersonal challenges. He was formerly Director of Corporate Strategy at Verizon and has taught Corporate Strategy at Rutgers University. He earned the Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) certification and thereby understands the importance of having a company’s HR and diversity initiatives to be fully in concert with a company’s overall strategy. He has taught Managing Workforce Diversity at Rutgers University where he also received the Faculty Leader in Diversity Award. He is a Certified Diversity Professional by the National Diversity Council and teaches in the DiversityFIRST training program. He received the Most Engaged Leader Award from the Tri-State Diversity Council for delivery of diversity programs. He received the Mentor of the Year Award from National Black MBA Association New Jersey Chapter. He has extensive consulting experience through a boutique firm which specializes in helping clients to address management and strategy issues. Not only does he have solid practical experience in consulting, he is the originator of the Management Consulting course at Rutgers, with proven techniques and sage case studies. On an individual basis, he is an Associate Certified Executive Coach per the International Coach Federation and has taught Executive Leadership at the graduate level. In addition to Verizon, Leon has corporate experience in marketing and market research at Newsday and Aetna. He was also vice president of an international start-up and a legislative aide to two Congressional committees in Washington, DC. He earned a BA cum laude from Harvard University and MBA degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Stan C. Kimer, founder and president of Total Engagement Consulting, is a nationally recognized consultant with unique skills in employee development/career mapping and workplace diversity (specialization in LGBTQ+, Employee Resource Groups, Diversity Councils, Diversity Strategy, and Inclusive Recruiting). Stan formed his own consultancy around these areas in 2010 following a 31-year successful diverse, multi-functional career at IBM. While at IBM as Director of Global Sales Operations for IBM’s consulting practice, Stan served as the executive sponsor overseeing career development for IBM’s 3,000 Sales Operations employees. He has now executed his unique innovative career mapping approach which he launched at IBM, with clients ranging from major corporations to church denominations to professional organizations. During his four years on IBM’s global corporate diversity staff, Stan led IBM into industry leadership in LGBT diversity and established IBM’s procedures for supporting transgender employees and assisting with case management of employees undergoing gender transition while in the workplace. Since forming his own consulting practice, Stan has trained or spoken in over 150 venues reaching over 7,500 professionals. He is a certified Out and Equal Workplace Advocates Building Bridges Trainer and a certified Training Management Corp / Berlitz Cultural Competency Trainer / Practitioner. Within the transgender arena, Stan has provided training to client employees and HR teams and has assisted with case management of gender transitions in the workplace. He is active in leadership roles in dozens of communities and civic organizations including as a volunteer instructor on his church denomination’s leadership development faculty. In 2013, the Triangle Business Journal recognized Stan with one of their Leaders in Diversity – Role Model awards. Stan received his MBA from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and BS in management science from Georgia Tech.-- In his spare time, Stan trains as a competitive adult figure skater.
Cecilia Orellana-Rojas, Ph.D.
Cecilia Orellana-Rojas serves as senior vice president of strategy and research for the National Diversity Council. In this role, she oversees the execution of the organization’s strategic goals to generate new revenue streams. She leads the consulting function as well as innovative, high-quality educational and research initiatives in diversity and inclusion. She is the creator of the NDC Certification Program curriculum, which prepares professionals for successful careers in the DEI space, and the NDC Index, a tool that measures organizational commitment to diversity and inclusion among companies in the United States. She is also the developer of the NDC Toolkit, a unique diversity reference portal and research consolidator. Cecilia brings 15 years of experience at AT&T, where she started as a manager in diversity marketing. She spent most of her career at the telecommunications giant as associate director and lead consultant of corporate diversity. In this role, she offered support in the formulation, implementation and direction of AT&T’s diversity and inclusion strategy including metrics, communications, and training. She also provided consulting in all aspects of workforce diversity. Prior to her corporate role, she worked as a journalist and later taught in academia for more than 10 years in the area of sociology, with emphasis on U.S. race relations, gender, Latin America, and research methods. Cecilia is a passionate advocate for diversity, equity, and inclusion. She was instrumental in the launch of the Texas Diversity Council and served as the first president of the San Antonio Advisory Board. As a founding member of the Texas Hispanic/Latino Summit, she played a leadership role in establishing the mission of the summit as a venue for Latino/a voices within the Texas Leadership and Diversity Conference. She has been recognized numerous times with the Diversity Champion Award and Diversity Leadership Award for her commitment and dedication to diversity business practices. Cecilia has served on the Emeritus Board of Directors for the Masters Leadership Program of Greater San Antonio and as an external member of the Workforce and Diversity Committee for the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA). In addition, she has served on the Immigration and Refugees Action Team for the City of San Antonio’s Faith-Based Initiative. A native of Chile, Cecilia earned a Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree in Latin American studies from the University of New Mexico. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of North Dakota. She resides in San Antonio, Texas, with her husband, Henry, and their son, Rodrigo.
Al Sullivan is the president and owner of Inspirus Consulting Inc. A firm specializing in system wide Organization Development, Diversity, and Sustainable Change. His approach integrates both theory and practical tools from the Applied Behavioral Sciences. His primary goal is to help client systems engage everyone to do their best work. His firm worked with a 4000-employee hospital to assess, design, and implement updated and strategic Diversity, Inclusion, and Culture training. He used the “Train the Trainer” model to provide the hospital with the capacity to train, update, and evaluate the program with sustained impact over time. Al helped the Information Technology division at global pharmaceutical organization win the “Attraction, Development, & Retention” Diversity award by designing and implementing initiatives which significantly increased senior female and minority leaders. Al has experience designing, delivering, and evaluating training intended to improve awareness and collaboration in multicultural organizations. He attends to the various levels of system when training and consulting (e.g. individual, team, organization, and community). His continuous improvement focus helps to connect training design to strategic organization objectives. Additional areas of expertise include applying strategies in areas such as Talent Management, Employee Engagement, Executive Coaching, Strategic Human Resources Management and Organization Development. Al is a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources Al is also trained in a number of Organization Development tools and approaches such as Use of Self, Organization Analysis / Design, Action Research, Group Facilitation, Multicultural Organization Development, and Change Management, & Process Consulting.
Linda Valdez Thompson
Linda Valdez Thompson is the Former Executive Vice President of Administration and Diversity at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport. Linda provided strategic leadership for the Human Resources, Procurement and Materials Management, Risk Management, Business Diversity and Development, and Corporate Communications & Marketing functions. Linda established employee engagement initiatives to ensure the workforce is productive, healthy, diverse, and inclusive. These initiatives include employee resource groups, mentoring networks, learning and development opportunities, and a Total Rewards strategy. She also championed the Airport’s Wellness program with an on-site fitness facility and medical clinic. Additionally, Linda established an award-winning supplier diversity program. During her professional career, Linda has acquired more than 20 years of managerial and executive experience for such Fortune 500 companies as Levi Strauss, Hasbro, and Baxter Health Care. Her responsibilities have included multi-site, domestic and international locations. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Midwestern State University and a Masters in Organizational Management from the University of Phoenix. Linda is a Certified Senior Human Resources Professional (SPHR), a Certified Compensation Professional, a Certified Benefit Professional, and a Certified Global Remuneration Professional. She is a Certified Corporate Citizenship Professional through Boston College Center for Corporate Citizenship; and is a Certified Diversity Professional/Advanced Practitioner from Cornell University. Furthermore, Linda is an alumni of the prestigious National Hispana Leadership Institute. Linda has received several distinctions, including being named Woman of the Year by Hispanic Business Magazine, recognized as one of the top Latinas of influence by Latino Leaders Magazine, and named an Ultimate Latina by the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. She’s also been the recipient of the Dallas Business Journal Minority Business Award - Corporate Executive of the Year, the HR Diversity Excellence Award by the Society of Human Resources Management.