GBH names Yemisi Oloruntola-Coates first Chief Inclusion and Equity Officer

by | Mar 31, 2021

GBH President Jonathan Abbott announced the appointment of Yemisi Oloruntola-Coates as Chief Inclusion and Equity Officer for the Boston-based public media producer. This newly-created position reflects GBH’s ongoing efforts to build a more diverse and inclusive organization.

Oloruntola-Coates has led diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives for large integrated health systems, and for more than a decade has been instrumental in implementing culturally responsive practices and shaping an understanding of the role that diversity plays within organizations and communities. She joins GBH from Baystate Health in Springfield where she served as Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer.

Yemisi Oloruntola-Coates

Yemisi Oloruntola-Coates

“GBH is committed to being a workplace that provides opportunity and inspiration for a diverse staff, and a public media organization that represents the wide diversity of our community,” says Abbott. “Yemisi is a recognized leader in the DEI field and we look forward to the many ways she will strengthen our efforts on behalf of our employees and our audiences.”

In her new role Oloruntola-Coates will report to Abbott and be part of the GBH executive leadership team, responsible for developing strategies, initiatives and practices that support and advance a respectful, equitable and inclusive workplace for GBH and its many external partners.

“I am looking forward to joining GBH in this journey and working together to create sustainable change that will not only have an impact with GBH, but also the community and the nation,” said Oloruntola-Coates.

At Baystate Health for the past two-and-a-half years Oloruntola-Coates led the overall development and implementation of a diversity and inclusion strategic framework. She implemented programs, culturally responsive care strategies, training, recruitment, and related efforts to increase the organization’s ability to support and serve their diverse patients, employees, and community. Prior to that she was System Director of Diversity and Patient Care Civil Rights at Lee Health in Florida for 11 years where she focused on developing what she calls the four Cs — caring employees, corporate social responsibility, community engagement and patient care. Under her leadership Lee Health twice received recognition from Forbes Magazine as best employer for diversity and women.

Oloruntola-Coates has extensive experience in DEI education and training, and has worked and studied internationally as a teacher and cultural ambassador in Japan, and as a Fulbright Fellow in West Africa. She is a member of the Conference Board Executive Diversity Council, a faculty member of Healthcare Management Institute, and has been recognized with numerous awards. Next month she will be honored as one of the 2021 Top 100 Diversity Officers during the National Diversity and Leadership Conference. She holds a BA degree from Hofstra University and MA degree from the University of Florida. She will join GBH in early May.

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