BOARD OF DIRECTOR, CHAIR-ELECT
Stephen A. Leach joined the Representation, Inclusion Strategies and Engagement (RISE) Team at The Walt Disney Studios in September 2020. The Walt Disney Studio creates, distributes, and markets some of the most iconic and memorable films and franchises in movie history. The RISE Team helps cultivate creative talent, supports diverse storytelling, conducts outreach and market research, and creates strategies that drive D&I, multicultural consumer acquisition and engagement for The Walt Disney Studios’ businesses. Stephen is responsible for partnering with leadership across studios, lines of business, and global markets, providing subject matter expertise on relevant inclusion practices and enhancing the Disney brand both inside and outside the company. Stephen acts as a strategic consultant to business leaders and HR partners focused on attracting, retaining, and developing talent that reflects Disney’s audiences and promoting an inclusive environment where all employees at all levels can perform their best.
Before joining Disney, Stephen was a member of the Workforce Engagement and Global Diversity and Inclusion team and served as the Senior Director, Diversity + Inclusion Strategies at Marriott International. In this role, he provided knowledge, skill, and consultative leadership to ensure that Marriott’s D+I efforts and strategies were innovative and provided solutions to drive associate engagement. He was responsible for leading and promoting Marriott’s culture of inclusion through the development and implementation of cultural competence trainings, relationship and partner building, data analysis and reporting, and program management. During his time with the company, Marriott International received the very prestigious honor of being ranked #1 for diversity by DiversityInc., one of the leading diversity and inclusion publications in the industry.
Prior to Marriott International, Stephen spent 8 years in the Diversity/Corporate Social Responsibility space as the Manager for Community Relations and the Manager for Workforce Diversity and Inclusion at Nestle USA where he led the development and implementation of D&I strategies, programs, trainings, strategic alliances, and community relations for the world’s largest food and beverage company. Earlier in his career, he held leadership roles in government affairs and community outreach for several national organizations.
Stephen received his B.A. in psychology from Wake Forest University and certificates from the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, The Executive Leadership Council, and the Leadership Center for Excellence in Arlington, VA. These certifications are in the areas of Executive Leadership for the 21st Century; Critical Factors for Successful Leaders; and the inaugural DMV D&I Institute, respectively.
Stephen and his wife Danielle live in Northern Virginia with their son Steph and twin boys, Jackson and Carter.