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In this Health Evolution Confab Leaderships Series video installment, Mandy Cohen, MD, Secretary, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and Lloyd Dean, CEO of CommonSpirit Health, share strategies on how to create a culture of inclusion – which often includes managing executives who don’t recognize the value of diversity.

Insights from the video

“When I was first running our department, my leadership team was not diverse. It required leadership changes to make room for folks from diverse backgrounds, which means I had to actually ask a couple of senior people to not be part of that leadership team anymore in order to bring on leaders that reflect the communities we serve,” Cohen says.

Dean agrees that it’s important to put actions behind rhetoric because people judge a CEO by what that individual does, not simply by what a CEO says.

“Our workforce and those who serve the community must be of the community and represent the community,” Dean says. “We are holding people accountable as we look at hiring practices to ensure that diversity and inclusion is at the forefront. We are doing everything we can to ensure that the community is focused on diversity and inclusion and that people within the community see and feel that our hospitals and access points are places where they will be treated with equality.”

Watch the full video below.


The in-person Health Evolution Confab 2022 is scheduled for September 15-16 in Nashville at The Joseph Hotel. Learn more or apply to attend.
Related articles from Confab 2021: 
From the frontlines of addressing inequity: ‘Health equity is quality and safety work’
Is the concept of ‘social determinants of health’ inhibiting progress toward equity? 
For health care leaders, a fork-in-the-road moment in addressing health inequity 
How health care leadership is evolving amid the crises of 2020-2021