Clients and Testimonials

TESTIMONIALS

  1. DEI Leadership Development
  2. Cultural Bias & Inclusion
  3. Going Southern
  4. Storytelling
  5. Religious Diversity

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1. DEI LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT

“Deborah is a Change Agent, a thought leader. She was an advocate for diversity and inclusion long before it was popular, a current trend of events. It can be lonely at times doing this kind of work when others do not understand or get it. Seems like more people are getting it. She is a true pioneer. I am proud to call her my colleague and friend.”
~ Mauricio Velasquez, Diversity Training Group – President

“In my role as a Human Resources Manager, the training and cultural awareness of the Matrix Model Management training will allow me to relate to others as they would like without assuming what they want or need.”
~ Valoria Armstrong, TN American Water – CEO

“When Ms. Levine introduced her story methods and Matrix Model System, lights bulbs went off. Telling our stories breaks down barriers and lets us react on a different level.”
~ On-Line Wall Street Journal

“One of the most beneficial items I learned as part of the Global Leadership Class was using the art of storytelling as a conflict resolution tool. The Matrix Model System allows me to gauge my comfort level when interacting with others, and helps in making decisions that all those involved can agree on.”
~ David Ortiz, La Paz de Dios/Past President

“Deborah Levine is a wise, experienced, thoughtful teacher who takes an intentional, critical approach towards teaching others about Diversity, Equity,and Inclusion.  It’s not just data, facts, policies, and trends; Deborah strategically pulls from her knowledge, background, and pivotal  life experiences, showing you how to facilitate and leverage the theoretical and empirical controls of the DEI discourse.  Deborah questioned my views, challenged my perceptions, and charged me with taking some trips into my past to unearth that which fuels those very same views and perceptions.  I never thought much about using storytelling as a means to enter into and mainstream DEI discussions.  As life would have it, everyone, EVERYONE has a story to tell; our values, principals, beliefs we espouse – they all begin with a story.  One challenge with DEI is the access point.  Everyone is starting their inquiry, their discussion from a different place.  Alignment and accord is rarely reached if we start off at divergent points.  The story, albeit it different because we are different, but the story is one we all have.  We can access ours, bringing to life the potential of understanding someone else’s.  Deborah teaches you how to invite people in, align outcomes, and adopt/create shared language….all through storytelling.  For this lesson I am grateful.  I am able to take the real and objective technical details surrounding DEI and juxtapose them with the access point for all through storytelling.  Thank you Deborah!”
~ Kianna Scott, IHI Holdings, LLC

“I’ve known Deborah for almost a decade, engaging in dialog regarding Diversity and Inclusion from time to time. Her efforts and resilience in providing sound advice and consulting, with practical and pragmatic results, is nothing short of spectacular. Her passion for the work shines and her tenure in the field is among put her with the pioneers of diversity and inclusion long before there were any such names. Her expertise is some of the most valuable you will ever find and I highly recommend reaching out to her for professional and/or organizational development for now and our collective future. Deborah is a leader in getting people, places and things to work together better through recognizing our capabilities and opportunities.”
~Zen Benefiel, MBA,  Transitional Life Coach

“I highly recommend Deborah Levine as an author, teacher, and speaker on the subject of Diversity. She is in a class of her own any time the subject of diversity surfaces in a conversation among erudite people. She has more published books and articles on diversity than any other person in the world. Deborah has been extremely intuitive since the early seventies as she talked and wrote about the positive influence of cultural diversity on society and in the workplace. She has always expressed views and concepts on diversity far in advance of them being recognized by the most progressive companies, organizations, and higher learning institutions. That’s why she is known internationally as The Diversity Futurists.
Her speaking and storytelling skills are unparalleled because of her ability to connect with diverse audiences of all ages ranging in size from a dozen to many thousands. Deborah connects with audiences by always remaining authentic and allowing the influence of her early years as a little girl growing up on the island of Bermuda to surface. Her Jewish Family’s business was the leader in implementing diverse hiring practices on the Island. Now you understand from her accomplishments and heritage why she earned a diversity writer and speaker classification of her own, The Diversity Futurists.”
~ Glynn Hodges: Executive Director, John Maxwell Team

2. CULTURAL BIAS & INCLUSION

“Deborah, is a lottery of cultural experience.  Her ability to incorporate relevant storytelling with her wisdom makes her an ideal trainer or speaker for your events needing an expert on diversity. Whether as a panelist, keynote speaker, or workshop facilitator, if you want to have a positive impact on the cultural unconscious bias of your event, contact her, Deborah is the Dynamic Diva of Diversity!”
~ Vincent Phipps, M.A., CSP (Certified Speaking Professional)

“The Matrix Model Management System is an excellent tool, especially for team building, dealing with conflict and decision making, and Deborah’s incredible skill in utilizing this tool makes all the difference. Her work has become an invaluable part of the City of Chattanooga’s economic growth due to the combination of her leadership, willingness to serve, and her phenomenal skill with bias tools often used poorly by others.”
~ Rae Bond, Chattanooga & Hamilton County Medical Society /Executive Director

“The talk on Cultural Diversity at the Child Abuse conference was very informative and the Matrix Model Management System will equip our professionals and community member to handle different situations, always keeping diversity in mind. Child abuse knows no boundaries and affects children from all ethnic, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds.”
~ Renee Nail, Children’s Advocacy Center/ Executive Director

“Your guide, Inspire Your Inner Global Leader, has been very inspirational to all the students. The personal anecdotes and focus questions make the book relatable to everyone, and it has helped to learn even more about myself. Your support has been outstanding: I could not have done the Youth Global Leadership Class without you.”
~Nisha Boyington, Founder, Youth Global Leadership Class Chattanooga

3. GOING SOUTHERN

“It was a pleasure having Deborah Levine as the keynote speaker for our annual College of Liberal Arts Diversity Symposium, in March 2018.  Deborah is, not only a charming and emphatic individual, but also well versed in the topic of interest to us here in the south, where we are starting to see a wonderful increase of international individuals and companies especially in the automotive industry.  She gave useful tips and insights and was mindful in structuring her talk by starting with an academic/ intellectual context. She then brought up sociological/anthropological theories and finished with practical examples to connect well with our student attendees.

The reception showed that not only her talk resonated with the audience but that the speaker was well liked and her expertise appreciated.  Students felt comfortable in asking questions and approaching the speaker afterward. Will definitely consider having Deborah back to our campus in the future.”
~ Dr. Giovanna Summerfield, Professor and Associate Dean for Educational Affairs. College of Liberal Arts: Auburn University.

“Deborah Levine has artfully written an enlightening book for new southerners. As well as learning from her book GOING SOUTHERN, I absolutely enjoyed reading it.”
~ Alnoor Dhanani, CEO/Owner of Double Cola Company USA

“Going Southern: The No-Mess Guide to the South is an entertaining as well as practical introduction for anyone who wants to live, work, play, and learn in the South. Ms. Levine’s own family history and background prepared her to view her adopted Southern culture with appreciation for its rich idiosyncrasies, its ancient roots, and its importance to the success of travelers and immigrants from other parts of the world. Her insights are warm and vital because she delivers them in an engaging storytelling style that is itself an example of Southern literary culture.”
~ Dr. Roger G. Brown, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga / Chancellor Emeritus

“Most books about cultures tend to present objective data about a region, then go on to describe the population in cultural dimensions, and then list the do’s and don’ts. Going Southern inclines to another approach and bases her insights on the history and attitudes of the South, particularly on the value of storytelling, showing how heritage enters everyday life. So the book becomes a collection of tales, both directly about the author’s experience, as well as about what others have learned by the first-hand experience of living and hearing tales told in the South. Out of this, then, come salutary “tips,” summary lists of behaviors both to do and to avoid.”
~ Dr. George F. Simons, Founder of diversophy.com

“In the old Southern tradition of telling stories, Deborah shares her magnificent knowledge and experience of the South with the unique kindness of the region. To me as a German part-time Southerner, her advice is worth gold.”
~ Beate Ziehres, Editor-in-chief of the German magazine, Regjo

4. STORYTELLING

“Mrs. Levine has devoted her life to combating hate and building peace and understanding within communities. She is a prolific writer and wonderful storyteller, weaving stories of her involvement in the aftermath of the Oklahoma City bombing into her father’s personal stories as a Nazi hunter.  Levine helps foster learning and promote understanding within local communities, online, and in the organizations with which she works. Her tireless efforts to engage communities in dialogues have resulted in 15 books and numerous guides and resources from which we can all benefit.”
~ Susan McCuistion, President, daiOne
“In celebration of Women History Month, Deborah Levine delivered an inspiring presentation to UNM-Valencia Campus in New Mexico on March 31, 2021. Hosted at Valencia, the online delivery also included other branch campuses. Sharing her family history, Deborah spoke on the women in her family and how each generation passes its spirit of volunteerism and passion for reading and writing to the next one. I am grateful for Deborah’s generosity with her time as well as her family stories.
~ Dr. Julia So, University of New Mexico /Valencia
“The stories in Inspire Your Inner Global Leader are riveting because they are written in a conversational stye… it’s as if the reader is hearing you tell it as opposed to reading it.”
~Dr. Mark Mendenhall, J. Burton Frierson Chair of Excellence in Business Leadership, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

5. SPIRITUALITY & RELIGIOUS DIVERSITY

I want you to know how blown away everyone was with your presentation today. It was impeccable. You hit it out of the ball park. I don’t know if we’d had anybody who engaged the group like you did. The enthusiasm, the expression and animation, the eye contact. You were truly where you described – whether in college or in Bermuda. We were with you. That’s skill my friend. It’s always a pleasure to watch a pro at work. And a pro you are.
    You are an inspiration to me and thousands of others around the world, many of whom you have not met. They know you and your heart from your books, articles and animated talks and presentations. People like you are consistently helping to make this world a better place for all. Keep living your dream and changing lives! ”
~ Glynn Hodges: Executive Director, John Maxwell Team

“Thank you beyond words for this time we had together. Truly your wisdom – each piece of your education and experience and life have combined – with your teacher’s heart, healer’s spirit – to bring to us the core of working with diversity. You take us to the heart of the matter. You have given us wisdom and knowledge and tools that will only impact our ministry – it will touch, change and grow each of us. Thank You for Religious Diversity at Work!
~ Shari Hofstetter: Pennsylvania Chaplains Association Annual Conference

“The lessons in Teaching Curious Christians about Judaism provide a taste of Jewish life even if no Jews live in our neighborhood. The responsibility to build a relationship of mutual respect remains true today… The key to further growth is the education and formation of children and adults alike.”
~ Sr. Mary Ellen Coombe nds,: Former Director of the Office for Ecumenical & Interreligious Affairs, Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago

“If we are to live with our deepest differences and build a nation out of these differences, then we must learn about one another in our classrooms. The Religious Diversity in our Schools case study is good evidence that, when properly understood and applied, the religious liberty principles of the First Amendment protect the conscience of every parent and student.”
~ Dr. Charles C. Haynes: Director of the Religious Freedom Education Project at the Newseum

CLIENT LIST

CORPORATIONS

Unum Life Insurance of America
Volkswagen
Nissan
International Paper
La-Z-Boy Inc.
First TN Bank
SunTrust Bank
Kimberly Clark
Siemens

AGENCIES & NONPROFITS

US National Parks Service
Erlanger Health System
Hospice of Chattanooga
City of Chattanooga Multicultural Affairs Office
BlueCross BlueShield of TN
Chambers of Commerce (Chattanooga, Rockford, Birmingham)
Birmingham International Center
Allied Arts (ArtsBuild)
SE Assoc. of Social Workers
National Assoc. of Women Business Owners (NAWBO)
TN Office of Diversity & Small Business
International  E-Rotary club: Planet Shakers

RELIGIOUS ASSOCIATIONS

National Workshops on Christian-Jewish Relations
Parliament of the Worlds Religions
Hunstville Unity Conference
Metropolitan Ministries of Chattanooga
Seventh-day Adventist National Conference
United Methodist Midwest Regional Conference,
Pennsylvania Chaplains Association
Jewish Federations (Illinois, Oklahoma, Tennessee)

EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS

Fulbright Scholars of Alabama
New York University: Business program
Auburn University
U. of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Southern Adventist University
Wheaton College
Elmhurst College,
Chattanooga State Community College/Global Leadership program. Chattanooga Teen Global Leadership Class
University of TN at Chattanooga
Colleges of Medicine (Chattanooga, Birmingham)
Public school systems (Tulsa, OK & Hamilton County, TN)
Assoc. of American Veterinary Universities
Medical Colleges (Universities of TN, AL)

AWARDS

Forbes Magazine: Top 10 Diversity & Inclusion Trailblazers
Women’s Federation of World Peace: HerStory Award
International Books for Peace Award
Tennessee Women’s Leadership: Excellence Award
Chattanooga Media Award
Girls Inc. of Chattanooga: UnBought & UnBossed Award
American Planning Association/Chicago: Student of the Year

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