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LGBT Executives Gather to Advance Workplace Equality


EDGE Media Network Contributor

Tuesday March 24, 2015

The eighth annual Out & Equal Executive Forum will convene 50 high-ranking and emerging lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) corporate leaders from around the world to discuss best practices for advancing LGBT workplace equality.

During the three-day event, held March 24-26 at the Nikko Hotel San Francisco, participants will focus on building their strengths as executives in the world's largest corporations and furthering their skills as LGBT leaders.

"The Executive Forum brings together key people who are working within their companies to build workplace equality for LGBT people," said Selisse Berry, Founder and CEO of Out & Equal Workplace Advocates. "Their work as global business leaders gives them a unique perspective on what is needed to further workplace equality here in the United States and globally."

Improving employee diversity, especially among tech companies, has been in the news. But it is important that LGBT employees are included in the definition of diversity.

"If we aren't being counted, then the message is that we don't count," Berry said.

To solve this issue, Executive Forum participants will focus on ways for corporations to effectively implement a new trend: Self-ID programs to know how many LGBT employees they have in order to provide more inclusive policies.

In addition to Self ID, the forum discussion will include transgender benefits and global policies. There will also be a special emphasis on the importance of allies who can ensure that inclusivity and acceptance permeates throughout the culture of their company.

The forum will also include a "State of the LGBT Union" presentation by Tim Sweeney, former program director of the Evelyn & Walter Haas, Jr. Fund and former CEO of the Gill Foundation. Sweeney's talk will update executives on the status of the current LGBT movement.

Out & Equal hosts the annual Workplace Summit, where employees and experts from around the world gather to share strategies and best practices to create workplace equality, inclusive of all sexual orientations and gender identities. Visit for more information.