WMFDP Announces 2015 Courageous Leader Award Winners

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Executives from Lockheed Martin and W.K. Kellogg Foundation recognized for championing workplace diversity and inclusion

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Courageous leaders are willing to engage their head and heart in the workplace, a risky notion in many organizations.

WMFDP, a global leadership and diversity consultancy, today announced the winners of its 2015 Courageous Leadership Award. La June Montgomery Tabron, President and CEO, W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) is recognized for her significant contributions to the foundation’s diversity & inclusion efforts that resulted in policy and practice changes that achieved quantifiable progress and results. Dennis Little, Vice President Strategic Planning, Lockheed Martin was instrumental in convincing the Lockheed Martin Corporate Diversity Council to mandate the attendance of every Vice President in the company at Lockheed Martin’s Effective Leadership of Inclusive Teams diversity summits. Executives from Dell, Dot Foods, Northwestern Mutual, Parexel International, and Rockwell Automation were also recognized.

The award celebrates business and nonprofit leaders who demonstrate excellence in building inclusive workplace cultures and forge transformative shifts in the way diversity and inclusion is practiced in their organization. WMFDP’s Eight Critical Leadership Skills served as the primary selection criteria.

“Dennis and La June embody leaders who are not afraid to demonstrate their vulnerability publicly. Courageous leaders do not just show up with talking points and merely state a message,” said Bill Proudman, CEO of WMFDP. “Courageous leaders are all in, right in the mix with their colleagues, learning and practicing what it takes to listen deeply to understand, rather than deduce. La June and Dennis are tireless in this respect.”

The selection committee of professional diversity consultants evaluated leaders based on who best demonstrated passion for championing diversity and inclusion, consistent track-record of engagement and demonstrated results in shifting mindsets with a long-term view.

More about the winners

La June Montgomery Tabron made significant and courageous contributions to WKKF’s efforts to become more diverse, more inclusive and to achieve racial equity. Her commitment to diversity work has resulted both policy and practice changes, and achieved quantifiable progress and results.

Dennis Little knows no bounds when driving Lockheed Martin’s diversity efforts. He believes diversity and inclusion shapes thinking around new solutions in aerospace production. He is an executive member of Lockheed Martin’s Able and Allies Leadership Forum, a group dedicated to creating a fully inclusive workplace for people with disabilities.    

WMFDP also recognized nominees: Matthew Holt, VP Human Resources, Dot Foods; Michael Paruleski, Supervisor Customer Care, Rockwell Automation; Michael Strati, Chief Development Officer, Northwestern Mutual; Stephen Caulfield, Executive Director, Dell Bratislava; Ulf Schneider, SVP Chief Administrative Officer, Parexel International.

Past award recipients have included Rick Gesing, Corporate Vice President, Applied Materials; and Lee Tschanz, Vice President North America Sales, Rockwell Automation.

About WMFDP 
White Men As Full Diversity Partners is a global diversity consultancy that partners with clients to design and deliver diversity programs that transform workplace cultures by inspiring courageous leaders --especially those in the dominant groups-- to examine mindsets and shift behavior. By engaging the head and the heart, our experiential Learning Labs and Engagement Sessions build diversity leadership skills necessary to create inclusive workplaces.

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