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2021 Executive Forum Sessions

Scroll below to view the latest information about 2021 Executive Forum sessions. This page will be updated as more information becomes available. All sessions are listed in Eastern time.

General sessions

The daily general sessions include all-attendee plenary sessions and networking opportunities.


LGBTQ LEAdership track

The three workshops under this track will explore key competencies for LGBTQ leaders: strategic vulnerability, power and influence, and leveraging your experiential knowledge for business strategy. Topics include corporate storytelling, board/community engagement, and leading teams.

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DEI best practices

These workshops will explore cutting-edge topics around diversity, equity and inclusion work. Potential topics include: leading DEI initiatives after COVID/for remote workers; leveraging BRGS for maximum impact; latest work on trans/NB inclusion.

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intersectional advocacy

Intended for both LGBTQ and ally leaders and DEI practitioners, this track emphasizes empathy and connection as key leadership competencies. Workshops in this track underscore the need for intersectional approaches to DEI efforts and offer ways for participants to leverage their voices for inclusion. 

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APRIL 13 10:00-11:00

Opening General Session & Networking Event

Executive Forum kicks off with opening remarks from Out & Equal’s CEO, Erin Uritus, followed by a fun and casual networking event so our attendees can get acquainted. 

APRIL 13 5:00-6:00

The State of Our Community: The 2021 IBV LGBT+ Study and Jam

Learn more about, and take part in, the groundbreaking study now underway by IBM in partnership with Out & Equal. IBM Jam will capture a quantitative view of LGBT+ employee experiences, including discrimination and success metrics. As a collaborative discussion space, it will also collect qualitative data on insights, experiences with authentic leadership, and more. 2021 Executive Forum attendees are invited to participate in this study during the forum.

APRIL 14 10:30-11:00

Lead with Compassion, Fireside chat with Erin Uritus and Shelly McNamara

Out & Equal CEO, Erin Uritus, sits down for a fireside chat with Shelly McNamara, Chief Equality & Inclusion Officer and Executive Vice President of HR at P&G and author of No Blanks, No Pauses: A Path To Loving Self and Others. As an out, lesbian woman in corporate America, Shelly often found herself as the “only one in the room” and as a result, adapted to create her own style of authentic leadership. This discussion will dive into what it means to lead with compassion, the importance of addressing systems of oppression and structural racism, and the practice of bold allyship in the workplace.

APRIL 14 4:30-6:00

Success Groups

Success Groups is a platform to bring together ExFo participants with similar interests and professional backgrounds to hold meaningful conversations, to share authentically, and to build personal connections and support. Participants will be able to network with peers in one of three concurrent sessions: ERG Leaders, Executive Champions/Senior LGBTQ Leaders, and DEI/HR Leaders.

APRIL 15 10:30-11:00

Expanding the LGBTQ Leadership Pipeline

Over 25 years, Out & Equal has focused on helping LGBTQ people thrive at work and on supporting inclusive workplaces that can retain and develop high-potential LGBTQ employees. Join Out & Equal, along with senior leaders from the Korn Ferry Foundation, to learn more about how these opportunities are expanding and becoming more targeted on underrepresented parts of the LGBTQ community.


APRIL 14 1:00-2:30

Owning your LGBTQ+ Leadership Presence
All of us are expected to speak publicly in our “day jobs or gay jobs”. While that prospect may be challenging for all speakers, it’s particularly challenging for leaders in our community. Our experience of overt or subtle marginalization over the years can get in the way of our success when we communicate. In this session JD Schramm shares his 4-point model for LGBTQ+ Leadership presence and helps participants see what’s possible to expand and own their authentic presence. Schramm, author of Communicate with Mastery, has worked for decades with leaders in a wide variety of fields on these exact topics.

APRIL 15 11:00-12:30

The Boardroom Revolution: Why 2021 Might Be a Turning Point For LGBTQ+ Board Representation and How ERGs Can Support This Trend
On September 30, 2020 Gov. Newsom of California signed Assembly Bill 979 mandating publicly listed companies in California to have diverse Boards Members including based on sexual orientation and gender identity. In December 2020, NASDAQ made a proposal to the Securities Exchange Commission on mandating some level of diversity to be listed on the exchange. The NASDAQ proposal and AB979’s signature came on the heel on several other developments which placed LGBTQ Board representation on the map. While progress on LGBTQ equality in the workplace has been tremendous in the past decade, Out Leadership published in January 2021 a research piece which highlights the abysmal representation of LGBTQ people on corporate boards and articulate why it matters. The research also argues that an intersectional approach to Board diversity built on a coalition of organizations advocating for other underrepresented communities is necessary. Can the private sector change expand to its highest decision-making bodies? Are businesses up to it? Can business step up the pace of change? What is the role of ERGs? How does LGBTQ representation fit with other underrepresented minority efforts? Is there a pipeline of LGBTQ talent to fill Board opportunities?


APRIL 13 1:00-2:30

Global Strategies for Nonbinary Inclusion
As more employers invest in LGBTQ inclusion and gender-inclusive workplaces, nonbinary identities have become the focal point of many DEI initiatives. However, businesses are still grappling with how to incorporate the full spectrum of gender diversity – particularly nonbinary identity – into their LGBTQ diversity and inclusion initiatives. Join experts from Out & Equal to explore cutting edge best practices for nonbinary inclusion on the global scale, and build actionable next steps for your company’s nonbinary inclusion initiatives. This session is facilitated by Out & Equal’s own CV Viverito (Associate Director of Global Initiatives), Corina Hendren (Senior Associate of Global Stakeholder Engagement, and Rebecca York (Learning & Development Senior Associate). 

APRIL 15 1:00-2:30

Coping with Stress & Anxiety During Uncertainty and Avoiding Burnout
For the past year, many of us have been working from home all while grappling with increased amounts of uncertainty related to COVID-19, political upheaval, and civil unrest. This has led to an increase in levels of anxiety, stress, and burnout. During uncertainty, we are often flooded with uncomfortable emotions and negative thoughts, which we are not quite sure how to manage. In this session, Zander Keig, LCSW will be discussing strategies and techniques for recognizing signs of stress, challenging negative thoughts, regulating emotions, and setting boundaries. Keig, NASW 2020 National Social Worker of the Year, has been an LGBT advocate since 1987, first as a lesbian and now as a trans man.


APril 13 3:00-4:00

Historic and Current anti-Asian Violence, Making the Connections

Anti-Asian racism and violence are by no means new, unfortunately. In the past year alone many factors have brought about a sharp increase in reports and incidents. Strong anti-racist movement building against white supremacy, in addition to anti-Asian rhetoric from the previous administration, have pushed reactionary entities into violence. YK Hong will talk about the recent patterns of anti-Asian racism as well as a brief timeline of anti-Asian systemic policy and history. They will talk about root causes, cross-movement building and intersectionality, including ways to support, intervene and advocate.

APRIL 14 3:00-4:00

Advancing Disability Inclusion and Equality in the Workplace
CEOs and Institutional Investors from around the globe have come together and have made a commitment to advance disability inclusion and equality in their workplaces and with the companies they invest in. They believe it is essential to drive their companies to align with corporate values and a meaningful purpose. Two of the components of this commitment are for these companies to partner with Disability:IN, the leading nonprofit resource for business disability inclusion worldwide and participate in the Disability Equality Index (DEI). Similar to the structure of the Corporate Equality Index (CEI), the DEI is a comprehensive benchmarking tool that helps companies build a roadmap of measurable, tangible actions that they can take to achieve disability inclusion and equality. Each company receives a score, on a scale of zero (0) to 100, with those earning 80 and above recognized as “Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion.” During this session, you will hear from Out & Equal and Disability:IN partners about how much they have learned from both indices and are taking parallel steps to improve both LGBT and disability inclusion at their companies.

April 15 3:00-4:00

“Not Just a Bad Day:” The Rise of Anti-Asian Hate, and the Need for Workplace Action
On the evening of March 16, 2021, a white gunman in Atlanta targeted three Asian massage parlors, murdering eight, including six women of Asian descent. This attack is just the latest in a steady increase of hate crimes over the last year targeting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders across the United States. But where do Asian American voices and experiences fit in this new era of Black Lives Matter, anti-racism, and renewed commitment to intersectional DEI work? In this panel discussion, you will hear from corporate DEI and movement leaders about the impact of anti-Asian hate and how to address it in your DEI efforts. Our panel includes of Anna Mok (President, Ascend; Partner, Deloitte & Touche LLP), Kenrick Ross (Executive Director, NQAPIA), Bo Young Lee (Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Uber), and is moderated by Michelle Meow (The Commonwealth Club)

All of the General Sessions will be recorded and available to view on-demand. Due to our workshop tracks being highly interactive, only a limited number will be recorded and available to view on-demand. Networking Sessions will not be recorded.


Global workplaces where all people are equal, belong, and thrive.


Out & Equal is the global convener, thought leader and catalyst actively working to achieve workplaces of equality and belonging - supporting LGBTQ+ employees and leaders who thrive in their careers and lives and achieve greater impact on the world.