Launching the Center for Equity, Gender, and Leadership

By Rafael Sanchez

was amazing to see the diverse turnout in Spieker Forum for the launch of the Center for Equity, Gender, and Leadership (EGAL). The room was beyond seating capacity, filling out on the ends with people standing. The buzz around inclusion was electrifying, igniting a powerful atmosphere. The launch of EGAL marked the first pivotal step for the Center in working towards tangible change. At the heart of the best public business program in the world, the Haas School of Business, known for its distinct principles, culture, and community, the Center is the hub for all equity efforts at the School.

Kellie McElhaney | Photos by Jim Block

The event kicked off with Dr. Kellie McElhaney, the Center’s Founding Director, captivating the room with her introduction. One thing was clear, there was an inspiring amount of support for gender equity. What followed was an incredible lineup of Haas alumni, who exemplify what it means to be a Berkeley Leader.

Larissa Roesch | Photos by Jim Block

Larissa Roesch, MBA ’97, Vice President and Portfolio Manager at Dodge & Cox, kicked off the event by sharing a story about how she found out about EGAL and her desire to support its efforts.

Nikita Mitchell | Photos by Jim Block

Nikita Mitchell, MBA ’15, Founder of Above the Bottom Line and Senior Manager of Strategy & Planning at Cisco, walked us through her career trajectory, highlighting her journey at Haas by taking a deep dive into her experiences as a woman of color.

Kate Morris | Photos by Jim Block

Kate Morris, MBA ’14, Lead for People & Inclusion at Adobe, talked about her recent experiences in the workforce, demonstrating the impact an organization can make when investing in change.

Brandon Doll | Photos by Jim Block

Brandon Doll, MBA ’14, Vice President of Strategy and Business Development with the Oakland Raiders, stressed the importance of allyship and encouraged the males in the room with personal stories and his keys to success.

Rich Lyons | Photos by Jim Block

Lastly, Rich Lyons, BS ’82, Dean of the Haas School of Business, added final remarks to the incredible event. He talked about the importance of the Center as a driving force aligned with Haas’ culture and community.

Gender equity was at the forefront of the Center’s launch and it will be exciting to see the mission of the Center evolve, aiming to address inequality related to race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and gender identity.

Photos by Jim Block

At the heart of UC Berkeley's Business School, the Center for Equity, Gender, and Leadership educates equity-fluent leaders to ignite and accelerate change.