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Shawn Kroskros-shawn-high-resolution-photo

CEO
The Arc Northern Chesapeake Region

The past year has not only been challenging with COVID-19, but we have also faced race and discrimination challenges and realities as a state and a country. How do you establish a strategy for diversity, equity and inclusion in your organization and how do you use your influential voice to help others understand the importance?

I was concerned about the emotional health of our team during the social unrest. We formed a Social Justice Committee that created diversity training, focus groups and developed cultural events for all employees. It is vital to support team members through both personal and professional issues.

There are so many issues legislators are tackling in the Maryland General Assembly and in various organizations statewide to create change and help people succeed both at work and at home. Can you share some issues you are passionate about and how our network of women leaders and attendees tonight can make a difference and become advocates for change?

The low pay of our frontline workforce impacts the quality of supports that a person with I/DD (intellectual and developmental disabilities) receives. These trained professionals and those they serve are not valued; this is evident in how the state and federal governments reimburse for this work. They are worthy of a living wage. It is an issue for all of us. At some point, either ourselves or someone we love, will need direct support to manage our lives.

This is a winner profile from The Daily Record's 2021 Top 100 Women awards. Information for this profile was sourced from the honoree's application for the award.