Diversity & Inclusion Speakers

Ultimate List: 16 Top Diversity and Inclusion Speakers for 2021

With 57% of employees wanting increased diversity in their company, the diversity and inclusion speakers discussed in this post are key to staff retention, workplace culture and team cohesion. From disability awareness campaigners to racial equality activists, these passionate orators are each committed to their cause.

Diversity & Inclusion Speaking Topics:

    • Racial Equality
    • Gender Representation
    • Disability Awareness
    • Neurodiversity
    • LGBTQ+ Rights

Discover the top diversity and inclusion speakers available to book for 2021, in our latest post.

Top 16 Speakers:

Source: https://whattobecome.com/blog/diversity-in-the-workplace-statistics/

Nicola Adams


Nicola Adams was named The Independent’s Most Influential LGBT Person in Britain, in response to her outstanding performance at the Olympics. She is a passionate speaker on gender and LGBTQ+ representation:

“Just imagine if women’s sport was on the TV all the time – how many more female athletes we would have?”

Nicola Adams

Speaking Testimonial:

“Fantastic! Nicola was open, honest and inspiring. It went amazingly well, and we can’t wait to have her back.”Macquarie Group Services

Akala

One of the top speakers on race and diversity, Akala’s presentations discuss the importance of inclusion in the face of discrimination. He is a vocal equality campaigner:

“People get more upset by being called a racist than by racist things happening.”

Akala

Speaking Testimonial:

“As a Citi employee, I’d like to thank Akala for speaking last week. I learned a great deal and am extremely grateful.” Citi Bank

Ayo Sokale

Ayo Sokale is a highly respected innovator in the world of civil engineering. She is also an influential campaigner for diversity and inclusion and uses her roles in politics, sustainability, civil engineering and more to improve female and Black representation in a range of sectors.

“We all impact the world, be it our carbon footprint, how kind we are to our neighbours. But I was always looking for the most effective way to live my life, to have the most positive impact. That has been a driving factor since day one.”

Ayo Sokale

Speaking Testimonial:

“Please forward my thank you to Ayo, on behalf of the Catalent Swindon and CWN team. She did an incredible job this morning and we’ve all left the call with her positive energy ready to #choosetochallenge!”Catalent Pharma Solutions

Inga Beale

As the first female CEO of Lloyd’s of London, despite the company’s 328-year history, and a bisexual visibility advocate, Inga Beale’s speeches explore her personal experience with discrimination:

“When I was the boss of Lloyd’s of London, the Financial Times featured me in its list of influential LGBT+ execs. I was sent hate mail: letters and emails telling me I didn’t deserve to be alive. They were rude, sexist and homophobic.

“I ignored them and threw them all away. With hindsight, I wish I’d kept them – but that was my coping mechanism. Sometimes I feel like the Terminator: I keep going no matter what missiles are aimed at me.”

Inga Beale

Speaking Testimonial:

“Dame Inga Beale was fantastic! She is such an inspirational leader and attendees in the webinar were engaged throughout, and so interested in what she had to say.”One Stream Software

Catherine Mayer

Catherine Mayer has dedicated her career to gender equality, as the co-founder and President of the Women’s Equality Party. Her speeches discuss the importance of inclusion:

“It’s not enough to vent about what you don’t like on social media. I would ask everyone who can, men included, to get involved in an organisation actively working for gender equality.”

Catherine Mayer

JJ Chalmers

JJ Chalmer’s life was changed forever in 2011 when an improvised explosive device left him severely disabled. The British soldier turned public speaker explores this story with audiences, raising awareness for different disabilities:

“There were down days when things were incredibly hard. But I would then look around at the other guys who were in recovery and they were all battling on regardless. That pushed me forward too.”

JJ Chalmers

Speaking Testimonial:

“The conference went very well, and JJ was excellent. The informal feedback we have had is overwhelmingly positive. People have described JJ as inspirational, authentic, kept their attention at all times and had a good balance of humour and excellent content.”Revolution Bars Group

Richard Whitehead

Richard Whitehead is a champion Paralympic runner, who claimed Silver at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympic Games, as well as another Silver and two Gold medals at prior games. The first-ever Patron of Sarcoma UK, Richard is keen to raise awareness of illnesses and disabilities, inspiring other disabled person’s to strive and achieve their goals.

Speaking Testimonial:

“Just wanted to let you know that Richard was a success yesterday. He is so nice and the story worked well with the theme of the event” – PHD Media Worldwide

Charlie Martin

Charlie Martin is widely regarded to be one of the world’s first transgender motorsports driver, having raced in the 24 Hours of Nürburgring in 2020. At events, Charlie reflects on the power of representation:

“When we have ambassadors for the sport who stand up for their values with passion and conviction and spread the message that we all need to be proactive in our own lives, then we can bring about real change in society.”

Charlie Martin

Speaking Testimonial:

“We’ve received some amazing and highly positive feedback. Engagement across the business was 96% for #ASOSFOL, which we wouldn’t have been able to achieve without you being part of it.”ASOS, Festival of Learning

Matt Lindley

Matt Lindley was one of the first openly gay RAF pilots, a staggering achievement that changed history. He discusses this experience as a diversity and inclusion speaker:

Speaking Testimonial:

“I cannot recommend Matt highly enough. He talked to the Close Brothers community about his journey and it resonated incredibly well with all colleagues, not just those from the LGBTQ community. His candour and honesty really connected with people, and the ties with wider mental wellness and resilience were incredibly topical given the current pandemic. His humour shone through and it was one of the best received external speakers we have had to date. A thorough recommendation” – Martyn, Group Chief Operation Officer, Close Brothers Bank

David Blunkett

As the UK’s first-ever blind cabinet minister and the Vice President of the Royal National Institute of Blind People, David Blunkett is a passionate disability awareness campaigner:

“I think that we need to avoid giving the giver moral superiority by engaging the receiver in the process of shaping charitable policy. For the welfare state, for example, we need programs that prevent people from being passive recipients.”

David Blunkett

Frank Bruno

From the heights of boxing fame to the despair of bipolar disorder, Frank Bruno’s mental health crisis received media scrutiny. As a speaker, he discusses this poignant experience:

“Mental illness is a very powerful thing. If it is with you it is probably going to be there until the day you die. I am trying so hard to break mine, but it is not easy. It is my toughest fight ever.”

Frank Bruno

Speaking Testimonial:

“Just want to say a personal thank you to yourself and Frank for his work at the weekend. Without a doubt, one of the nicest people I have ever met, made the night for everyone and I can’t thank you enough. Everybody loved him.”Majestics Personal Training

Asif Sadiq

A compelling voice on diversity in the workplace, Asif Sadiq, the Vice President of Global Diversity & Inclusion at Adidas, is regularly booked for corporate events:

“Diversity is great, we need to realize difference, and we’ve done that over the years. Inclusion is where we are. We’re trying to really make that diversity mix work. But where we really need to get to is belonging. Creating a sense of belonging for all people.”

Asif Sadiq

Speaking Testimonial:

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your involvement with our Staff Conference. We have been receiving really positive feedback from our staff and it’s certainly a great way to start the new academic year. Thank you once again for your support.”Wakefield College

Harnaam Kaur

Harnaam Kaur is the Guinness World Record Holder for the youngest woman to grow a full beard. Having faced bullying, she is now a transformative speaker on beauty expectations:

“I think women need to stop fighting women. But not just fighting each other, fighting ourselves. I honestly think self-love is so powerful that it could stop war.”

Harnaam Kaur

Martine Wright

When Martine Wright survived the 7/7 bombings, her life was changed forever. She is now a successful Paralympian and public speaker, whose powerful story resonates with audiences:

“I was in that mindset until I started physiotherapy – seeing other patients badly injured both physically and mentally shifted my perspective. Until that day I had no idea that 52 people had died. That is when I realised how lucky I was. I was only four feet away from a bomber, but I was alive.”

Martine Wright

Speaking Testimonial:

“It was brilliant, the feedback we have had already is overwhelmingly positive! So please do forward onto Martine with our thanks, and the message that she has made a huge impact on so many of us!”J.P Morgan

Mark Foster

While earning multiple Olympic medals in swimming, Mark Foster battled with his sexuality. He has since come out as gay and is an incredibly popular LGBTQ+ speaker:

“I tiptoed around in the shadows for so long – but now is the time to come out.”

Mark Foster

Speaking Testimonial:

“Thank you kindly for recommending Mark Foster. He was fantastic, very personable and a brilliant speaker. He very openly shared his personal and professional stories, which were very inspiring and thoroughly engaged the audience. We’re received great feedback so far and I really appreciate you suggesting him.”American Express

Tanni Grey-Thompson

Born with Spina Bifida, Tanni Grey-Thompson faced lifelong physical challenges. She now describes her journey to Paralympic success as a disability awareness speaker:

“The biggest barriers I’ve faced have been from people who make assumptions about what I can’t do, who assume that because I’m in a wheelchair I can’t be an athlete, or I won’t be competitive.”

Tanni Grey-Thompson

Speaking Testimonial:

“An excellent keynote presentation at the Towards World Class HR in the North West Conference. Thank you for your valuable contribution.”NHS North West Conference

Book a Diversity & Inclusion Speaker

To hire a speaker on diversity and inclusion, contact The Diversity & Inclusion Speakers Agency either by phone, on 0203 9816 297, or via our online contact form.

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