Aurora Chamber of Commerce

Successful Summit Addresses Diversity and Inclusion – Diversity and Inclusion Council / October 12, 2017

On October 12, 2017 The Chamber’s Diversity and Inclusion Council hosted its second annual Diversity and Inclusion Resource Summit, held at The Summit Event and Conference Center.  The event boasted powerful speakers, 22 business vendors, seven food vendors, and more than 200 attendees.

The Summit was set up as a Resource Fair, highlighting Resource Talks throughout the event. During the course of the evening, vendors had the opportunity to share resources with businesses and consumers, while the talks provided insight into the importance of a diverse workforce, and creating an inclusive workplace for employees and their customers – which can ultimately help increase the bottom line.

The first talk by Quill Phillips, Special Assistant to the President for Inclusive Excellence, Community College of Aurora, addressed understanding implicit bias in the hiring process.

The second talk was on the topic of inclusive diversity recruiting and retention best practices, with a panel including Kristine Feuerborn, Sr. Recruiter, UCHealth; Sandie Harrison, Affirmative Action Planning Services Operations Manager, Employer’s Council; and Jennifer Darmofal, Director of Human Resources Client Services and Talent Acquisition and Workforce Planning, Children’s Hospital Colorado.

The final talk was also a panel with two business owners and a community member sharing their impactful stories.  Dasha Vonnesscene shared her personal story as a Transgender in order to increase understanding and inclusiveness towards transgenderism.  Max Edja, Senior Business Consultant, Business Solutions Corp., and Edgar and Renee Leon, Owners, Aurora AutoPros LLC., shared their stories of how they moved to Aurora as immigrants and were able to start their own businesses.  They both spoke upon the importance of giving back to their communities.

The event would not have been possible without the support of the sponsors who also share the vision of diversity, inclusion and equity: Children’s Hospital Colorado, UCHealth, The Equity Project LLC, Kaiser Permanente, Wells Fargo, Colorado Technical University, Citywide Banks, FirstBank, ConocoPhillips and Westerra Credit Union. Also, thank you to our food, wine and beer sponsors Legends of Aurora Sports Grill, Konjo Catering LLC, Star of India, Ayu G-Michael Ethiopian Coffee Ceremony, Bua Traditional Thai Cuisine, Dolce Nelly, DP’s Rubs-N-Stuff, Dry Dock Brewing Co., and Axiom Strategies.

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