Nick Owen

Deloitte is focused on having an inclusive culture, which is representative of society. Nick’s role as Chair has been to encourage Deloitte’s Executive leadership to further embed the principles of Respect & Inclusion throughout the company’s culture. In the last 4 years, Deloitte has rolled out mandatory training, to encourage Respect and Inclusion among all employees, including inclusive leadership workshops with over 6,000 senior leaders, providing absolute clarity on the respectful behaviours expected from everyone, regardless of seniority. Following Deloitte’s initial progress in gender diversity, Nick has challenged the organisation to include more emphasis on ethnicity, and to start to explore further inclusion opportunities, with reference to neurodiversity, disability and social mobility, through blind and contextualised recruitment. As Chair of a client-centric organisation, Nick is able to drive Deloitte’s inclusion message externally. As such, he sponsors the BAME on Boards programme, which supports senior BAME individuals on their journey to Boardroom positions, through a tailored programme of training, mentoring and networking events, in parallel with a similar programme he sponsors to develop Women on Boards. Nick encourages FTSE Chairs to nominate participants, in collaboration with the BBBA. The programme has raised awareness of BAME progression at the most senior levels and given FTSE Boards a practical opportunity to take action to improve ethnic representation in their organisations.

Dominic Christian

At Aon, Dominic has ensured that his leadership team have to sponsor 3-5 diverse colleagues and have D&I goals in their objectives, ensuring a strong pipeline of diverse talent. He is committed to driving social mobility to enable those from ethnic minority and disadvantaged backgrounds to have the opportunities that privileged, majority communities take for granted. Dominic has supported the development of Aon’s traineeship programme, Step Up, which attracts young NEETs (those not in education, employment or training) who are aged 18-25 to gain valuable experience and skills to enable them to enter the job market. Alongside one of the BAME women he sponsors, Dominic worked on two initiatives recently to attract BAME talent to Aon, an ‘Insight Week’ to give a week’s work experience to 15 young BAME individuals, involving presentations, skills workshops, and job shadowing to help introduce the candidates to the type of work that Aon undertakes, run by role model volunteers; and a brand new two-day workshop designed to attract BAME individuals and fast-track them to the assessment centre for Aon’s graduate programme. Beyond Aon, Dominic sponsors the Lord Mayor’s Appeal, which supports social mobility and encourages minority groups. As Chairman of Inclusion@Lloyd’s, Dominic also has influence across the whole of the insurance industry and works with leaders at other firms to drive a culture of inclusion. Additionally, Dominic is actively involved in mentoring BAME women to assist with their career progression in the city. 

Philip Davidson

Philip is a visible and active champion for inclusion at the most senior levels of the firm to ensure that KPMG is a magnet for talent and the clear choice for their clients. He is the Sponsoring Partner of KPMG’s Black Heritage Reverse Mentoring programme, which helps Partners understand the experiences of Black Heritage (BH) colleagues at KPMG, by matching them with a more junior BH Mentor for confidential and supportive discussions. In addition to the programme providing increased exposure to the Partnership, Philip has personally ensured that BH mentors are allocated a Partner Sponsor to help build their internal networks and drive career development. Philip also founded KPMG’s Black Heritage Working Group, which brings together Black Heritage Partners, Head of People, Co-Head of IDSE and the Chair of KPMG’s African Caribbean Network to track progress on FY19 BH targets, deliver specific actions to help advance BH inclusion and provide challenge and critique to internal strategies and campaigns. He sponsored KPMG’s Black Entrepreneurs’ Award (BEA), designed to support Black entrepreneurs and their start-ups to become investment ready beyond the firm, providing winning entrants with investment in their business, a senior KPMG mentor and membership of the Enterprise Nation small business network.

Kevin Ellis

Kevin aims to create a culture where everyone feels empowered to be the best they can be, whatever their background and however they identify. This is why PwC has voluntarily published their ethnicity pay gap for the past two years in their digital annual report, alongside a clear action plan to drive diversity and inclusion. PwC have invested in creating progression coaches to provide career advice and advocacy specifically aimed at high-potential ethnic minority and female directors. The programme is designed to directly improve gender and ethnicity pay gaps by ensuring PwC has a strong pipeline of senior people to fill these roles in the coming years. Kevin has also changed PwC’s partner income allocation process to ensure those leaders within PwC who are making a positive contribution to gender and ethnicity targets are recognised and rewarded. This is helping to drive accountability for diversity and inclusion among each of the firm’s leaders who all have a role to play in setting the right tone from the top. With Kevin’s guidance, PwC has recently joined forces with UKBlackTech to encourage greater diversity in the technology sector and to inspire more young people from a range of backgrounds to pursue careers in technology. Passionate about social mobility and ethnic diversity, Kevin championed PwC’s investment in Bradford as a way of enacting change in an area identified by the government as an opportunity area. Kevin also mentors ethnic minority future leaders from other PwC network firms and is the long-term sponsor of PwC’s GLEE (gays, lesbians and everyone else) network, which has grown to over 900 members.

Anjeli Patel

Having recently joined Deloitte, Anjeli has become an member of the firm’s multicultural network. She represented her previous firm, at Stonewall Workplace conference 3 times, speaking specifically about the challenges faced by Asian LGBT+ individuals. She was on the leadership team of the firm’s LGBT+ network and was consulted on the creation of gender neutral toilets. As a trans woman, Anjeli is passionate about creating inclusion for LGBT people of colour. She has spoken extensively about the issues faced by LGBT people of colour from her perspective, including in an interview with the BBC Asian Network and the FT on transgender rights being the frontier for business and change. She recently featured in the Asian Voice Newspaper, speaking openly about the impact that being LGBT+ can have on mental health, particularly focusing on cultural nuances. She has previously spoken at the GG2 diversity conference and at various universities across the country. She has been recognised as an LGBT+ role model by Leicester City Council and has been listed in the India London Gazette Powerlist.

Dara Kirton

Since joining PwC, Dara has had had a proactive role in diversity outside of her day job in consulting. In 2013, she set up the PwC Diversity Mentoring scheme to encourage students from under represented backgrounds to seek and gain careers in professional services. The scheme supports 200 students across the UK with employability skills and applications. 60% of these students are from BAME backgrounds. She has chaired the PwC Multicultural Business Network since 2015, steering the network through a relaunch, and it now has over 1,100 members. Dara led ColourBrave, a national campaign encouraging conversations on race at PwC. She now sponsors the network, mentoring the co-chairs and supporting and facilitating discussions with leadership and clients. On a day to day level, Dara has acted as a role model, coach, mentor and sounding board to many BAME colleagues and proactively championed diversity and inclusion across the firm. She joined the founding team of UK Black Tech, an organisation put in place to increase the cultural diversity of the tech industry, and is an active member of the EMpower working committee.

Vanessa Sanyauke

Vanessa’s organisation works as a consultancy to engage millennial women with FTSE 100 businesses in technology, financial services and law. Her senior management team is led by women of colour and they have structured internship schemes targeted at young women of colour. Vanessa set up the first pan-industry technology mentoring scheme, the award-winning Step into STEM, funded by O2, BT, Vodafone and Ericsson, which gives female students who study STEM subjects a mentor to support their career aspirations and to address the under-representation of women working in the STEM sector. They target women who are from Black, Asian or ethnic-minorities and in particular Black female students. She is currently working with Facebook on initiatives to attract black female students. Externally, Vanessa has been working with the UK Parliament to lead the delivery and strategy for the Speakers Parliamentary Placement Scheme, which gives 13 people of colour and those from under-represented backgrounds a 9 month paid internship with a Member of Parliament to increase the number of ethnic minority MPs and staff. She has also connected the scheme with corporate clients to host workplace visits to showcase other private sector opportunities. She is developing a residential programme and on Parliament initiatives to ensure that it is accessible for people with disabilities.

Mary Agbesanwa

Since August, Mary has co-chaired PwC’s Multicultural Business Network (MBN) as it has grown to 1000+ internal members, 300+ external members and 5 new regional MBN teams. She leads the network’s steering committee and chairs quarterly network leadership meetings. The MBN’s main focus is driving the ‘ColourBrave’ strategy within the firm normalising conversations about race in the workplace. Mary ensures that all events showcase diversity in leadership and sits on PwC’s People Council. Knowing that many BAME employees struggle to organically make strategic mentoring relationships, this year she organised for over 100 MBN members to be on the pilot for an internal mentoring app which enables employees to find mentors around the firm and have access to mentoring-related resources. Outside of work, she continues to run a young professional women’s network called Now You’re Talking, which has predominantly BAME Members and delivers action-focused networking events, side hustle showcases and retreats for members. For Black History Month, Mary leveraged her social media platform to launch the #31DaysofBlackExcellence Campaign on her blog showcasing 31 young Black people excelling in the corporate world, academia or entrepreneurship.

Shilpa Shah

In addition to her role leading on Deloitte’s Alternative Delivery Models agenda, Shilpa is a Respect and Inclusion Lead for Technology Consulting. She also leads Deloitte’s Women in Technology network and is an active member of the Multi-Cultural Network and she focuses on intersectionality. To drive cultural change and create focus, she has defined gender and BAME targets for the technology consulting practice. Shilpa mentors a large number of BAME and other individuals internally and externally and promotes different voices and stories from those of all backgrounds as she believes role models are vital to helping inspire others. She hosted Deloitte’s Black History Month celebrations as a member of the Multicultural Network, inspired over 150 BAME attendees to aim high and achieve the best of themselves. She has delivered webinars and events to over 100 people from BAME backgrounds sharing her experiences and offering career advice and guidance. For six years Shilpa has sponsored, led and championed Deloitte’s involvement in the annual ‘Your Future, Your Ambition’ event at the Emirates Stadium, inspiring and speaking directly with thousands of young people from ethnic minority backgrounds into STEM careers. Shilpa shares and listens and is passionate about helping others. She has participated in numerous panels and interviews on diversity in business to change the status quo. She was listed as one of the top 100 Asian stars in Tech and has been a finalist in the Everywoman in Tech Team Leader awards twice.

Bijal Majithia

Bijal launched the EY Hindu Network when she joined the firm, and it is now one of EY’s most active networks, consisting of a thousand internal members. The network hosts 6 large events a year tackling controversial topics such as the role of women, faith and gender stereotypes, to create a space where ethnic minorities can share their experiences. Bijal is also a Diversity and Inclusion ambassador for the firm and is involved in cross-network initiatives with a specific focus on supporting ethnic minority employees.  As a result of her work on establishing Diwali celebrations across EY , Bijal was invited to the annual Diwali celebration at Downing Street. Bijal’s work has been recognised by EY with a ‘Better Begins with You’ award and an ‘Inspiring Role Model’ award, and she has represented EY on several panels and awards. Externally, Bijal was selected as a founding member of the Professionals Network established at the Houses of Parliament under Lord Gadhia. She was recognised by ‘We Are The City’ as a Rising Star in Consulting in 2017 and she featured in the Consultancy UK Top 10 ‘Inspiring Women in Consulting’ list. Bijal is the Director and founder of Veda London, set up to share practical mindfulness and meditation in the workplace. She leads a team of 100 plus volunteers to serve 12 charitable and community projects across the UK and India. Additionally, Bijal is an ambassador and educator for Binti International, a charity working around the world to normalise healthy menstruation in challenging communities. Bijal features on BBC Radio 2 Pause for Thought and is a mentor for the The Girls Network, which seeks to empower girls from some of the least advantaged communities.