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Interdivisional Grant: Leadership Diversity Summit

Kizzy M. Parks
K. Parks Consulting Inc.
Katina Sawyer
Villanova University

The state of leadership diversity is changing at a fast pace, both nationally and internationally. To get a more in-depth understanding of today’s leaders, SIOP joined fellow APA Divisions (13, 35, 44, 45, and 51) to gain a better understanding of today’s diversity leadership through an interdivisional project, known as the Leadership Diversity Summit (LDS; recently featured in the September 2012 issue of Monitor on Psychology). The LDS was held in conjunction with the 2013 National Multicultural Conference and Summit in Houston on January 16th, 2013. Fifteen leaders from different gender, racial, sexual orientation, and cultural groups across four sectors (corporate, government, community, and higher education leadership in psychology) participated in the summit. During the summit, leaders were asked to describe their experiences as diverse leaders, as well as to highlight the current dimensions of leadership in a dynamic workplace environment.

The goal of the LDS was to:

  1. Advance research and practice by drawing on the expertise of diverse leaders to highlight challenges in a rapidly changing, global leadership landscape.
  2. To discuss how diverse leadership may differ from “traditional” leadership paradigms.

This ground-breaking effort received funding from APA’s Committee on Division/APA Relations (CODAPAR) committee, Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs (OEMA), support from the participating divisions, and sponsorships from two consulting firms. Two SIOP members (Kizzy Parks and Katina Sawyer) serve on the planning committee and assist in every phase of the LDS. Currently, the planning committee is reviewing the audiotape conversations in order to analyze the gathered information. The end result of this project will be a written document providing an overview of themes from the LDS and defining the resulting paradigm of leadership diversity. The results of this analysis will also be presented at the APA Annual Conference in August 2013. More information will be forthcoming and all LDS publications will be published and promoted by all divisions involved. For more information, please contact Kizzy Parks at kparks@kparksconsulting.com