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Councils to Focus on Diversity & Inclusion, Not-for-Profits

photo of 2019 NJBIA Women Business Leaders Forum

NJBIA President & CEO Michele Siekerka welcomes the 500 attendees to the 2019 Women Business Leaders Forum, organized by NJBIA and the Women Business Leaders Council. In 2020, NJBIA is organizing two new councils to that will focus on diversity & inclusion and the challenges faced by not-for-profit businesses.

The New Jersey Business & Industry Association has launched two new councils in 2020 — the Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) Council and the Not-for-Profit Council ­— to provide new opportunities for NJBIA members to convene on timely and relevant issues that will help them achieve business success.

The new councils join the NJBIA Women Business Leaders (WBL) Council formed in 2016 to advance the next generation of female executives. The WBL Council provides opportunities for skill building and the exchange of information and ideas at events throughout the year. This includes the annual Women Business Leaders Forum, which in 2019 drew 500 attendees to engage with industry executives on how women can advance in corporate leadership and the board room.

“The format of the Women Business Leaders Council has been such a phenomenal success we decided to expand the concept to new councils of interest to help our members stay informed and engaged on issues that present both challenges and opportunities,” said NJBIA President & CEO Michele N. Siekerka, Esq.

The D&I Council will include business leaders from all backgrounds and industries who will strategize on successful D&I practices at meetings and events, including a Diversity & Inclusion Summit on May 20 at Mercer County Community College, West Windsor. NJBIA, the Capital Region Minority Chamber of Commerce and other partners are sponsoring this event.

“For the past several years, NJBIA has partnered with Taft Communications on the State of Diversity Poll conducted by Fairleigh Dickinson University that has tracked the strides being made in creating more diverse and inclusive workplaces in New Jersey,” Siekerka said.

“In our 2019 roundtable discussions, we learned New Jersey businesses are all across the spectrum on how they are addressing D&I. It became evident that NJBIA can be a resource to them, convening best practice discussions on successful strategies that create more inclusive and respectful workplaces,” Siekerka said.

The Not-for-Profit Council will include leaders in this sector from across the state who will gather at regional quarterly meetings to share best practices and resources for collaboration that support their missions and enhance the opportunities for this critical sector.

“Government could never fill the void that would be left in New Jersey if our not-for-profit sector were to diminish in any way,” Siekerka said. “The economic impact of this sector is significant, as is the role it plays in direct services for our citizens.”

NJBIA members interested in participating on any of the councils can go to