Take action in the business community around diversity, equity, and inclusion

The Greater Akron Inclusion Challenge


“We are participating in the Inclusion Challenge to improve our organization so all staff, Y members and community members feel welcome and respected. It starts with me and our management team to genuinely evaluate where we are and to determine action steps to pave the way for positive change in diversity, equity and inclusion.” 

We are appreciating the process to learn and grow.

Jill Kolesar, President and CEO, Akron Area YMCA

Tell us how you're taking action?

Summa Health will enroll in the GAC Inclusion Marketplace. DEI efforts will be displayed and highlight on the Summa DEI and Empowerment website. Summa Health Legal Department will do a 21-day DEI information sharing challenge.

Iriel Hopkins, System Director, Community Relations & Diversity, Summa Health

The Importance of Participating in the DEI Challenge.

“The team at Leadership Akron committed to participate in the Inclusion Challenge to create a forum for us to have honest dialogue and learn from each other’s experiences.  Ericka Lessears on our team volunteered to send us articles and videos each day, and we discuss them at our weekly staff meeting.  The Inclusion Challenge has provided us with the opportunity to have candid conversations we might not normally have.”

Barry Dunaway, President of Leadership Akron

The importance of being intentional around DEI

The year 2020 will be remembered as a pivotal one in our country in so many ways - among them is the momentum taking place to embrace and better understand concepts like “diversity,” “equity,” “inclusion,” and “privilege” and what they mean in our workplaces and our lives. Akron Children’s Hospital, which has been guided by three promises since its founding in 1890, has fully embraced this challenge and is reexamining every aspect of our organization as we know being more inclusive and diverse makes us better and stronger, and makes us better able to care for the patient families who put their trust in us.

Grace Wakulchik, President and Chief Executive Officer of Akron Children's Hospital

Why did our organization decide to participate?

Miracle Resources began as only one brand, MR, a Marketing & Public Relations firm. As we worked with clients we saw a brand disconnect, the external brand showed DEI but internally clients needed workplace training.  

We built our second brand, a national training firm Brand+Team=Revenue offering trainers in every state who train on DEI and 30 other programs. As we change workplace culture and help our clients build teams that are inclusive, diverse and give an equal voice and opportunity to each employee; we are honored and blessed to help build cultures that grow success and respect.  

Our action steps in training and interactive learning have led to our third brand, Communication Concierge, that provides one on one coaching on all communication to ensure communication that is respectful and builds workplace culture. Thank you Greater Akron Chamber for including Miracle Resources in the Challenge!  

Click here for a video to help you build your brand, team, and revenue!

Katherine Miracle, MBA 

Brand + Team = Revenue National Training Program - Miracle Resources

21 days to commit to the Inclusion Challenge, starting on October 9th at our GAC Leadership Dialogue Series

"If we don't engage those who are being left out, we are setting the city up for failure."

Judi Hill, President of NAACP Akron Chapter.

The METRO Regional Transit Authority strives to provide innovative and equitable mobility options for the greater Akron area. Ensuring we are providing inclusive and equitable opportunities for our customers and our team members is one of our top priorities.

Participating in the Inclusion challenge has afforded us the opportunity to educate and listen to our team members on the challenges and fears they each have and work with them to alleviate those fears. We are not satisfied to just invite people to the dance, we must ensure the opportunity exists for them to dance!

Dawn Distler, CEO of Akron METRO RTA.

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What is the challenge?

The Greater Akron Inclusion Challenge is designed to leverage the momentum underway in the region to drive action around diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts within companies.

The Greater Akron Chamber launched this challenge immediately following the Leadership Dialogue Series on October 9th focused on driving action by businesses. For the ensuing 21 days, companies will be asked to reflect on their current diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts and commit to doing something tangible to advance them by the end of 2020.

Why are we doing it?

The goal is to ignite action and change within our companies and region through this unified effort.

Who is invited to participate?

This challenge is targeted at companies. While individuals are encouraged and welcome to participate, we believe that real impact begins with leadership’s acknowledgment of the issues and ownership of the solutions and actions. We are asking leaders of companies to step forward, engage their teams, and commit to doing something to advance their diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts before the end of the year.


Where can I go to get more details, help, or to ask questions?

For more detailed information on the Inclusion Challenge, please visit our challenge site. This site will offer resources, sign-up information, and challenge specific details. For other questions, you can contact Robert DeJournett, VP of Opportunity and Inclusion at rdejournett@greaterakronchamber.org.

Play Video


Greater Akron Inclusion Challenge - Interview with Nick Browning

Robert DeJournett,

Greater Akron Chamber Vice President of Opportunity & Inclusion

Interviews Nick Browning,

Akron Region President, Huntington


Learn more about the Greater Akron Inclusion Challenge experience in this interview between Nick Browning(Akron Region President, Huntington) and Robert DeJournett (Vice President, Opportunity & Inclusion) in this discussion detailing the importance of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the marketplace and more.

Those who have made a Pledge to the Inclusion Challenge

See the list below of the companies and organizations that have made a pledge to commit to our Greater Akron Inclusion Challenge. 



Tell us what you are planning to do to further understanding of diversity, equity, inclusion, power, privilege, supremacy, or oppression.