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Panel - Diversity in the Work Place

Diversity is much talked about in today’s business world. But how much of the conversation has translated into a truly diverse and inclusive work environment? One that better represents black Nova Scotians and brings financial gains to companies and as a result, in the bigger picture, bigger professional and financial gains within our communities. This powerful group of thought leaders will look at dynamic and innovation problem solving and talk about what’s working… and what’s not.

Jamile Cruz -  Co-Founder and Executive Director of I&D 101 (

I&D 101 is a company specializing in Inclusion & Diversity consulting services. Jamile created I&D 101 to help business leaders and their organizations to unlock potential by embracing inclusive and diverse talent, thus driving value creation and innovation. She is a business transformation leader with deep understanding of what it takes for organizations to become inclusive and diverse workplaces where ALL talent can thrive. Jamile has spent over 18 years with clients transforming businesses in high performing organizations, creating and implementing strategies to reduce operational costs and achieve their business goals. Her experience encompasses multiple industries including telecommunications, engineering, mining and management consulting, where she worked directly and advised Fortune 500 organizations.

Jen Richard – Admiral Insurance: Jen is the People Services Manager at Admiral Insurance, a UK motor and home insurer that employs over 400 staff in Halifax. A CPHR certified professional, Jen also has a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration (HR) from Acadia University, a masters certificate in Strategic Human Resources from Royal Roads University, and an extensive background leading the HR functional areas of performance management, recruitment and health and safety. With Admiral, Jen is spearheading a variety of diversity initiatives, with a primary focus on culture and workplace safety.

Laura Methot – Co-Founder I& D 101

Laura has spent 25 years travelling around the world, working with businesses to improve the world of work. She knows about the power of motivation and why people do what they do and has applied that knowledge to help leaders get better business results by focussing on behaviours and shaping supportive work environments. She says most people want to do the right thing and leadership is often about clearing a path for them to shine. Diversity brings new potential to the organization, but it takes a culture of inclusion for that potential to be realized



Pinki Kumar, Partner at Deloitte 

As a partner and the Atlantic Assurance service line leader for advisory services, PInki has over 25 years of experience providing innovative transformation solutions. Having lived and worked in three different continents, Pinki understands the importance of diversity not just at workplace but in everything we do.  Over the last two decades, she has been involved in various diversity initiatives across the country.  She has been an active volunteer for multiple community and social service organizations and is passionate about diversity and inclusion.  She is also a proud recipient of the Outstanding Asian Canadian Award from the Canadian Multicultural Council (CMC) for her contributions in helping create awareness of multiculturism and integrating immigrants in the community.

DeRico Symonds - Manager | Youth Advocate Program

As well as working full time with HRM DeRico works part-time with MSVU as Black Student Support Coordinator. DeRico is Co-founder of Future Roots Halifax, a social enterprise employing youth ages 13-17 in Halifax North end. He received the Irving & Ruth Pink award for youth development and social justice in 2016. DeRico Symonds received the Dr Burnley “Rocky” Jones Human Rights Award from the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission in 2018. DeRico Symonds holds an undergrad degree in Child & Youth Study from MSVU, completed a MEd in Counselling at Acadia University.


Events in that series

Mar 02, 2019 - 9:30 AM
Halifax Central Library

Mar 02, 2019 - 11:00 AM
Halifax Central Library

Mar 02, 2019 - 1:00 PM
Halifax Central Library