25 DEI Conferences CDOs Need to Know About for 2023 - Senior Executive

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DEI Conferences, Awards and Membership Organizations 12 min

25 DEI Conferences CDOs Need to Know About for 2023

Diversity, equity, and inclusion executives at any stage of their careers should consider taking advantage of the learning and networking opportunities offered by these conferences and summits.

by Sophia Wu on March 10, 2023

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  • DEI conferences offer an excellent opportunity to meet and network with fellow chief diversity officers and other DEI professionals across a variety of industries, ranging from health care to higher education.

  • Some of the top conferences in the nation are both virtual and in-person, globally accessible to members of DEI organizations.

  • See our roundup of DEI conferences to keep on your radar for 2023.

If you are an executive working in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), attending a DEI conference is a great way to strengthen and leverage your professional development, no matter what industry you work in or where you are in your career.

There are a range of options out there, from events focused on employee resource groups (ERGs), diversity-related strategies, and broad topics for chief diversity officers (CDOs) to those targeting more niche communities and specific topics and strategies. 

Some of the best DEI conferences emphasize various trainings, webinars, and other resources that can amplify issues confronting the DEI space. They can also offer various workshops, speakers, and panels to help you learn inclusive behaviors to model for their teams. Plus, they provide opportunities for you to network with and learn from other DEI leaders.

With all that in mind, we curated this list of 25 annual DEI conferences happening in 2023, in order by date. Even if this year’s event has passed, you may want to note it for next year.

March

Supplier Diversity and Economic Inclusion for Pharma and Healthcare

  • Dates: March 7-8, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: $1,396

This summit narrows in on industry trends and issues for suppliers in the pharma and healthcare industries. A few crucial topics on the agenda: identifying and overcoming unconscious bias, leveraging programs to overcome certification challenges, and expanding supplier diversity on a global scale.

Chief Diversity Officer 2023 Summit

  • Dates: March 8-9, 2023
  • Location: Orlando, FL
  • Cost: $1,595 (registration includes a 90-day membership trial to Academic Impressions, a higher ed professional development firm)

This summit, focusing on DEI efforts at higher-education institutions, features several roundtable discussions designed to exchange ideas among new and experienced diversity leaders. Topics on the agenda include building coalition strategies, ensuring equity in the promotions and tenures process, and recruitment and retention.

Advancing Women’s Leadership Skills and Opportunities in Pharma and Healthcare

  • Dates: March 15-17, 2023
  • Location: Virtual and Garden Grove, CA
  • Cost: $2,296 (standard in person only), $2,896 (standard in-person plus workshop), $1,846 (standard virtual), $2,496 (standard virtual plus workshop)

This biopharma industry-targeted conference focuses on career advancement opportunities for women in leadership roles.

IDEA Equity & Diversity Conference

  • Date: March 23, 2023
  • Location: Virtual and Denton, TX
  • Cost: $100 general admission ($50 for government, non-profit organizations, and higher education employees and University of North Texas Denton Alumni; free for UNT students; $25 for students from other institutions)

This regional-based DEI conference, presented by Goldman Sachs and aimed at higher education professionals and executives, emphasizes “inclusive excellence on our campus and abroad.” 

National DEI Training Week

  • Dates: March 20-24, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: $799 per course

This training week is filled with DEI bootcamps and certificate-earning opportunities. The themes are cultural competence as well as servant leadership in the DEI space. This is the precursor for the National Diversity & Leadership Conference on April 24-27, where attendees can take what they’ve learned during training week and apply it to some of the sessions the conference will cover (see below). 

The Forum on Workplace Inclusion 2023 Conference

  • Dates: March 27-29, 2023
  • Location: Virtual and Minneapolis, MN
  • Cost: $1,795 (in person), $795 (virtual+), $395 (virtual)

On top of hands-on DEI coaching and immersive leadership workshops, this conference’s agenda focuses on key topics such as “Combining Forces: Fueling Our Collective Capacity for Change” and “Cross-Industry Design for Impact + Sustainability.” With the virtual+ registration, you can attend 15 virtual workshops during the conference and get three months of access to three DEI coaching center programs — in addition to the three general sessions, five spotlight sessions, and 14 trend talks available to virtual registrants. Discounted rates are available for groups of five or more from the same organization, as well as for professionals in the healthcare or higher education industries, in government, and with small businesses or non-profits with an annual budget less than $5 million.

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April

Women of Color Leadership Conference

  • Date: April 14, 2023
  • Location: Kansas City, MO
  • Cost: $100

This conference, dedicated to women of color business leaders, touches on themes of multiculturalism, globalism, diversity, and inclusion. The keynote speaker for 2023 is Tiffany S.W. Hamilton, chief executive officer at YWCA White Plains and Central Westchester in New York, who formerly served as a university chief diversity officer for nearly five years.

Create a Culture of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • Date: April 19, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: $195

This conference offers virtual networking, as well as speaker sessions with chief diversity officers at Fortune 500 companies including Discover Financial Services and Ford Motor Company. In addition, attendees get opportunities to earn a variety of human resources professional development and recertification credits.

National Diversity & Leadership Conference

  • Dates: April 24-27, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: starts at $750

This conference can be helpful for any DEI leader at any stage of their career. It is linked to the National DEI Training Week, which will take place a month prior, and focus on several DEI trainings as a warm-up to this conference (see above). Some themes on the agenda touch on microaggressions, empathy, and inclusive leadership. Speakers include Reginald Miller, global chief diversity, equity, and inclusion officer at McDonalds; Mecca Mitchell, chief diversity, equity, and inclusion officer at Burlington Stores; and Alison Banks-Moore, chief diversity officer at Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey. The summit also provides toolkits and professional advancement opportunities such as a DEI starter kit and DEI training certificates. There are different registration tiers, all of which range from one day to four days registration, with options in between depending on how many days you would like to attend.

Toward One Wisconsin 2023

  • Dates: April 25–26, 2023
  • Location: Appleton, WI (virtual options available)
  • Cost: starts at $75

This conference offers the opportunity for Wisconsin regional leaders, professionals, and advocates from a broad range of sectors, including private business, non-profit, government, health, and education, to discuss and work on a statewide culture of DEI. This year’s keynote speakers are author Wajahat Ali, a TED speaker who discusses building a compassionate and inclusive America, and public theologian Reverend Traci D. Blackmon, who is also the Associate General Minister of Justice and Local Church Ministries for the United Church of Christ. Registration fees start at $75 for students; $100 for community members; $150 for non-profit or government attendees; and $200 for for-profit attendees. After March 29, the cost goes up $50.

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May

Diversity Reboot Series: Celebrating Global Asian & Pacific Islander Identities

  • Dates: May 10-11, 2023 
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: Free

Among a series of conferences including more than 50 speakers and 10,000 participants, this installment aims to bring leaders together for a discussion about the challenges facing members of AAPI, Asian, and Pacific Islancer communities. Among the past speakers at this summit are Congresswoman Judy Chu, NBC/MSNBC News anchor Richard Lui, and comedian Michael Yo. It also offers a virtual job fair.

Diversity Fatigue Summit

  • Date: May 18, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: TBD

This conference is a solution-based summit that will focus on innovative approaches to address diversity fatigue, such as incorporating a daily DEI routine or a virtual coffee session to discuss experiences and issues. Organizations who have attended this event in the past include EY, Moody’s, Amazon, and Citi. 

June

Asian Women in Leadership Summit

  • Date: June 8, 2023
  • Location: Singapore
  • Cost: TBD

The goal of this summit is to help leaders strategize ways companies can use gender parity to better lead and pioneer a healthier corporate environment and channel business growth effectively. 

Conference Board Diversity, Equity And Inclusion Conference

  • Dates: June 8-9, 2023
  • Location: Brooklyn, NY
  • Cost: $1,995 ($1,695 for Conference Board members)

This DEI conference focuses on mental health, including DEI fatigue. Some of the topics to be discussed include neurodiverse workforces and ageism, as well as “Effectively Leveraging DEI as a Competitive Edge” and “Beyond the Binary: Creating True Gender Inclusivity.” Among the speakers are Jessie Spellmen, director of diversity, equity and inclusion at Walmart, and Janet Rizzuto, director of diversity, equity, and inclusion (the Americas) at Warner Music Group. A case study on Walmart will also be presented to learn more about their background, issues, and solutions with DEI. Networking sessions and mini sessions are built into the schedule to allow for attendees to engage in other topics and opportunities for connection building with other professionals. 

July

Disability:IN Conference

  • Dates: July 10-13, 2023
  • Location: Virtual and Orlando, FL 
  • Cost: $1,500 for in-person general attendees; $400 for virtual

This conference for disability/accessibility corporate leaders celebrates accessibility in the workplace. It features awards such as “Best Places to Work for Disability Inclusion” and networking opportunities for new and seasoned diversity professionals. Speakers at last year’s summit included Camille Chang Gilmore, chief DEI officer at Boston Scientific and Loren Hudson, CDO at Comcast NBC Universal. Registration costs vary for corporate partners, affiliates, and exhibitors, and rise for late registration after June 3. For those who cannot attend in person, virtual participation includes live streaming of all the plenary sessions, select breakout sessions, and the engagement with other attendees via a conference app.

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August

National LGBT Chamber of Commerce International Business & Leadership Conference

  • Dates: August 14-18, 2023
  • Location: Denver, CO
  • Cost: TBD

This conference is one of the largest LGBTQ business events. It features B2B Boot Camp for Certified LGBT Business Enterprise suppliers, a local chamber development track for regional businesses, Marketplace Expo, and one-on-one Matchmaker meetings between suppliers and Fortune 500 companies.

September

2023 National ERG Conference

  • Dates: September 5-7, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: $499 

This conference, dedicated to employee resource groups, is primarily focused on scaling ERGs and DEI allyship. They also provide certificates on DEI themes such as implicit bias. There are multiple speakers and moderators across various industries and professions, with recognition for top ERG leaders today and ERG allies. You can do one day training with the ERG Academy  and/or the conference itself. 

HRO Inclusion Summit

  • Dates: September 13-14, 2023
  • Location: Virtual and Washington, DC
  • Cost: $695 for virtual; $995 for in-person

This conference engages HR diversity professionals on inclusion efforts in the industry. They have awards including the HRO Today Inclusion Awards, Executive of the Year, and DEI Program of the Year. Session topics include Diversity and Inclusion data, metrics, and analytics, as well as discussions of how to foster organizational and culture change.

Advancing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in Pharma and Healthcare Summit

  • Dates: September 19-20, 2023 
  • Location: Virtual and Philadelphia, PA
  • Cost: starts at $1,496 for virtual; starts at $1,896 for in-person

This industry-focused summit looks at drug research and development, disease awareness, and clinical trial outcomes through a DEIB lens. Its target audience includes diversity professionals and high-level executives in the pharmaceutical, biotech, medical device, healthcare, and life science industries. 

Registration costs rise as the conference date approaches, starting with super early bird rates, early bird, standard, (virtual) on-demand only, and ending with the walk-in rate of $2,496. Conference partners include FDA NewsWatch and Pharma Marketing Network.

Global Supplier Diversity Conference

  • Date: September 21, 2023
  • Location: TBD
  • Cost: TBD

In the wake of today’s economic and racial inequities, the goal of this conference is to identify and launch new vendor partnerships and increase the engagement of women and underrepresented small business suppliers, while connecting founders and business owners to those opportunities. Past speakers have included diversity professionals and senior executives from Microsoft, IBM, the U.S. Small Business Administration, and UPS. 

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October

HACR Annual Symposium

  • Dates: October 9-11, 2023
  • Location: New York, NY
  • Cost: $1,199 for early bird HACR Corporate Members; $2,199 for early bird non-Corporate Members

The conference offers different sessions regarding Hispanic inclusion, led by Fortune 500 company representatives, as well as HACR Corporate Member diversity professionals and senior executives. Past speakers have included Rosie Rios, former U.S. treasurer, and Jo Ann Jenkins, CEO of AARP. The Symposium also provides opportunities to learn about data-based DEI strategies from thought leaders and HACR’s Corporate Inclusion Index, a corporate accountability survey assessing how businesses make inclusivity efforts and outcomes for Hispanics.

SHRM Inclusion 2023

  • Dates: October 30-November 1, 2023
  • Location: Virtual and Savannah, GA
  • Cost: virtual passes start at $995; in-person passes start at $1,395 for members

This conference provides opportunities to earn professional development credits and expand your education in DEI learning. Attendees can opt to experience the summit in person or virtually. In-person day passes are available for $695 for members or $1,095 for non-members. There are sessions for any level of DEI commitment, from beginner to advanced, with workshops and seminars that attendees can register for pre-conference. The agenda also features an Inclusion Marketplace, where attendees can network with one another and discuss the latest products and services.

Global Inclusion 2023 Diversity Abroad Conference

  • Dates: October 31-November 3, 2023
  • Location: Chicago, IL
  • Cost: TBD

Attendees of this conference for global educators can participate in the Collegial Connections program, a short-term opportunity connecting experienced diversity professionals with students and new professionals to increase engagement. There are four types of sessions which include 30- to 75-minute lectures and presentations, as well as sample interviews, breakout sessions, and action planning events. They also feature different tracks such as emerging trends, education abroad, and global learning at home that touch on inclusive advising, outreach and recruitment, and strategic partnerships. 

November

Nebraska Leadership Diversity & Inclusion Conference

  • Dates: November 9, 2023
  • Location: Omaha, NE
  • Cost: $65

Promoting the interests of minorities and women, the Nebraska Hispanic Chamber Foundation’s conference is focused on leadership development, diversity, and cultural awareness. Its deeper focus on the Latin-Hispanic population across business, industries, government, and nonprofits is designed to promote a more equitable workforce and address the needs of diverse communities. 

Diversity Reboot Series 2023: Supporting Veterans, Active Services Members, & Military Spouses

  • Dates: November 14-16, 2023
  • Location: Virtual
  • Cost: Free

This conference can be a professional development opportunity for veterans and active military service members who are seeking a civilian job transition and want to better understand how to navigate the next phase of their careers. It also aids military spouses in their job searches for ones that can be convenient, practical, and useful given their partners’ base locations. Plus, it includes a virtual job fair. 

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Tell us about other DEI conferences to consider adding to this list.


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