All posts by Dr. Deborah Ashton

Dr. Deborah P. Ashton is the President, Planet Perspective; Founder, Equity Rising; and Advisory Committee board member for Mill Road Progressive Governance Fund. Formerly headed DEI or CDO for Medtronic, Darden Restaurants, Harley-Davidson, Argonne National Laboratory, and Novant Health. Former Chief of Test Development & Validation, Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Former Chief Psychologist & Learning Officer, Diversity MBA. Chaired the peer review board for Diversity Business Review. Has published articles on unconscious bias, inclusion and pay equity, in journals, such as, Harvard Business Review, Psychological Documents, Diversity Business Review, etc. Created inclusion assessment tools.

DEI in the Boardroom – by Dr. Deborah P. Ashton

Equity Impacts Corporate Decisions

Why have diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) expertise in the Boardroom? Look at the controversy swirling around the Georgia’s voting law–the backlash, the boycott, and the backlash to the boycott. Georgia’s most vulnerable citizens lose from both the law and the boycott. I contend that if there had been DEI experts on the boards of the major corporations that traditionally lobbied in Georgia, this may have been averted. Corporations could have predicted how the passage and signing of the bill into law may have impacted their brand. While the bill was being crafted social justice concerns could have been addressed, along with concerns regarding voting integrity. When you are driving you slow down before you come to the hairpin curve rather than trying to correct for it afterward. I have always contended that we should resolve a problem before it begins.

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