Regina Blair is not only passionate about pushing forward diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives — she’s also passionate about creating safe spaces for people to have real and honest discussions about DE&I where they may not otherwise feel safe or comfortable to do so. “I connect very deeply with the work that I do because I’m all about relationships and connection,” she explains. “Nothing makes me happier than when I can make a connection between people who would not have connected before and they can learn something from one another that they didn’t know before.”
As the vice president of talent, organizational development and diversity and inclusion at Day & Zimmermann, Blair has been serving in diversity leadership roles for over 20 years. Recently, she has partnered with talent acquisition to gain CEO support and funding for external diversity recruiting partnerships to access a broader talent pool. Blair has also been asked to interact with many of Day and Zimmerman’s clients, such as Harvard, Princeton, American Express and others, to be a thought partner on diversity.
In order to create a DE&I strategy that works, Blair states that it can’t just be someone’s part-time job. “I think having dedicated experience building employee resource groups that are business-focused really helps advance the dialogue in the company. And I think putting together strong diversity training around unconscious bias, teaching employees how to be an ally and knowing and explaining the differences between the D, E and I are some of the ways that companies can start implementing a DE&I program.”
And DE&I isn’t just something Blair leaves at the office; it encompasses her whole life. As a school board member in her hometown, she has worked to influence what is being taught to students in school and how to teach them about diversity, equity and inclusion.
Blair also regularly speaks and presents on local and national diversity panels and provides thought leadership across the DE&I community. Her influence was instrumental in the business case for a former employer to recognize Martin Luther King, Jr. Day as a company holiday.
2023 DE&I Influencers List