ABA/VBA Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Summit
Co-hosted by the American Bankers Association

Conference/Seminar/School Chandler Owdom

VBA and the American Bankers Association are joining together to launch their first-ever virtual Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Summit for bankers nationwide. This event is an important part of continuing a meaningful dialogue on fostering positive change in the industry. Sponsored by ABA associate member Ncontracts®, the value-packed program will help bankers cultivate a network of peers to share DEI leading practices and explore new opportunities and initiatives for their own institutions. The goal? To equip bankers all over the country with tools to mitigate systemic biases and foster greater inclusion for those disadvantaged by age, race, disability, sexual orientation, gender or other identity factors.

Register Now!


12:30 PM – 12:35 PM – Welcome

12:35 PM – 12:50 PM – Setting the Stage on Equality and Managing Structural Shifts

Naomi Mercer, Senior Vice President, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, American Bankers Association

What are you doing within your system to make sure it’s equitable? How do you look for the systemic changes that have to be made to your organization?

12:50 PM – 12:55 PM - Sponsor Remarks and Panel Introduction

Marnie Keller, SVP Partnerships and Industry Outreach, Ncontracts

12:55 PM – 1:40 PM - Explore. Engage. Elevate: DEI Program Best Practices Panel

Moderated By:

Marnie Keller, SVP Partnerships and Industry Outreach, Ncontracts


  • Explore: Teresa L. Gregory, President, Traditions Mortgage, York Traditions Bank
  • Engage: Maria Tedesco, President, Atlantic Union Bank
  • Elevate: Calandra Jarrell, SVP, Global Diversity & Inclusion, Bank of America

Understand where your bank’s program is on the DEI maturity spectrum, and further your program no matter what stage you are currently in.

1:40 PM – 1:50 PM - Break

1:50 PM – 2:35 PM – Breakout Session 1

TRACK ONE – EXPLORE | You’ve formed a task force…now what?

Moderated By:

Naomi Mercer, Senior Vice President, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, American Bankers Association


John Holdsclaw IV, EVP, Strategic Initiatives, National Cooperative Bank

Teresa L. Gregory, President, Traditions Mortgage, York Traditions Bank

How do you build your bank’s DEI strategy and what specific tactics do you need to get started? 

TRACK TWO – ENGAGE | You have launched a program…now what?

Stephanie Watson, VP, Professional Development, Ohio Bankers League

Keith Borders, VP Community Development, Union & Guardian Savings Bank

Featuring Morning Panelist Maria Tedesco, President, Atlantic Union Bank

How do you measure your program’s effectiveness and where do you go from here? 

TRACK THREE – ELEVATE |  You want to take your long-standing DEI program to the next level…now what?

Clara Green, Head of Diversity and Inclusion, Regions Bank

Kimberly Robichaud, Diversity & Inclusion Program Manager, Regions Bank​

How should you adapt your program based on the events of 2020 and dive deeper into your program’s efforts?

2:35 PM – 2:45 PM – Break

2:45 PM – 3:30 PM – Breakout Session 2

TRACK ONE – EXPLORE | Crafting Your DEI Strategy

Naomi Mercer, President, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, American Bankers Association​

Learn the elements of an effective DEI strategy and specific areas to incorporate when crafting a DEI strategy for your bank.​

TRACK TWO – ENGAGE | How to Use Data and Information to Help Diversify from the Board Level and Down

Moderated By:

Bruce Whitehurst, President & CEO, Virginia Bankers Association


Jennifer A. Docherty, Managing Director & Associate General Counsel, Piper Sandler & Co.

Debra Langford, Head of Business Development, Advancing Black Pathways, JPMorgan Chase

Terrie G. Spiro, President and CEO, Cecil Bank

Get real-world examples of what banks can do to continue to diversify your board and, more broadly, your organization. Top leaders from the Bank on Women, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to uplifting women in banking, will discuss strategies to educate the community banking industry on the importance of adding qualified women to the board C-suite. Then hear more about JPMorgan Chase’s DEI programs, including—Advancing Black Leaders, focused on attracting, hiring, retaining, and advancing black talent at the bank and Advancing Black Pathways, an external initiative directed towards community success in areas of education, career and wealth. JP Morgan executives will breakdown how the two programs build off of one another and strive to form a qualified talent pool for banks to draw upon and diversify their boards.​

TRACK THREE – ELEVATE | Leading Practices with Employee Resource Groups

Deborah Munster, Vice President, Diversity Best Practices

ERGs have been essential players in creating inclusive workplaces.  In today’s complex marketplace, they are increasingly being leveraged for their insights and influence.  In response to both the COVID pandemic and social injustices across the globe, ERGs are engaging in thoughtful and impactful ways to bridge divides.  In this session, participant will hear how ERGs and companies are responding to the disparate impact these pandemics and events are having on diverse communities.

3:30 PM – 3:40 PM – Break

3:40 PM – 4:30 PM - Closing Keynote Session - Follow the ARC: Creating a Path to Success through Inclusion

Bernadette Smith, Founder and CEO, Equality Institute

Diversity and culture are now the number one workplace priorities for Millennials and Generation Z, the largest growing sectors in today’s workforce. To meet this demand, organizations are experiencing a significant shift in how leaders need to approach hiring, training and managing employee behavior. When leaders bring diversity and inclusion into their leadership practices, they strengthen the culture and become much better equipped for the future.

With candor and humor, Bernadette will share the critical must-know practices for leaders to minimize hidden bias, empower under-represented team members, and create a profitable culture of inclusion. Leaders walk away with a greater understanding of diversity and inclusion, as well as simple, practical tools to strengthen their leadership skills.

This talk is best suited for leaders who already believe in the power of diversity, but need some guidance on how to lead inclusively.

4:30 PM - Conference Adjourn

This program is subject to change. Please bookmark this page to check for continuing updates. 

Registration Fees

Date Price
Now-November 6 $195 Per Person

Special Needs 

Please share any specific needs that should be considered as we plan for the conference (i.e. hearing impaired, sight impaired, etc). Please contact Chandler Owdom with any details.

Register Now!

Why You Should Attend

Be an Agent of Change

Master the leading practices to mitigate systemic biases that disadvantage marginalized groups.

Get Content that Fits Your Needs

Pick sessions that will nurture your DEI efforts—whether you’re looking to explore a new program, engage more fully, or elevate an existing initiative.

Cultivate a Network

Share stories with peers and learn deeper insights from experts.

Sponsored by Ncontracts®

Thank you to Ncontracts®, our exclusive event sponsor! Ncontracts is the leading provider of vendor and contract management services for the financial institution industry.

CPE Information

The ABA/VBA Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Summit is eligible for a maximum of 3.5. continuing professional education (CPE) Credits. CPE credits can only be claimed by participating in the live portion of the conference on November 6, 2020.

Attendees will receive instructions via email after the event concludes on how to obtain the CPE certificate of completion.