History of Organization:


           With initial support from the Oakland County Michigan Human Resources Department under the leadership of former Director Judith Eaton and in collaboration with Andy Pettress and Company, the Oakland County Employment Diversity Council was formed in 2000. The OCEDC has grown from 5 to over 340+ Oakland, Wayne and Macomb County governmental and community service agencies, private businesses, and community based organizations who offer their support and participation on a voluntary basis. We currently have an active board of directors and various dynamic committees. In August 2001 OCEDC completed the process of becoming an official Michigan non-profit Corporation and received (July 2002) 501c (3) tax exempt status with the IRS. OCEDC is a self-funded organization through various fundraising activities and events. OCEDC has assumed a leadership role in creating a forum to advance employment diversity within Oakland County. OCEDC mission, purpose, goals and achievements are detailed below:

            The Mission and Purpose of the Oakland County Employment Diversity Council is to; help increase awareness regarding the benefits of diversity in the workplace and to assist in building an inclusive work environment for all.

            The Oakland County Employment Diversity Council has assumed the leadership role in creating a forum to advance employment diversity for governmental agencies, private businesses, community service agencies and citizens.

           The Goal of the Oakland County Employment Diversity Council is; to develop and implement a comprehensive communication network which provides professional resources, training opportunities and professional support for its membership; to promote higher standards for employer/employee relationships; to educate the general public and business entities about the efficacy of diversity for individuals, families and society in general; to represent the diversity of employees who are committed to advance and protect the interest of their employers; to promote, clarify, describe, and communicate new techniques and strategies related to creating a diverse balance for both individuals and society; to provide a forum and resource for employers to enhance their diversity efforts; and to develop, promote and preserve diversity and inclusion programs, initiatives, efforts and practices.

OCEDC Activities - Oakland County Employment Diversity Council OCEDC
 promotes and supports diversity and inclusion by

_ Providing Monthly Diversity Educational Forums for businesses in the region

Holding annual public events to promote diversity/inclusion in the workplace

Offering annual diversity Job Expo for businesses to recruit diverse talent

Establishing strong collaborations with businesses, agencies and organizations throughout 

   Oakland County and the southeastern Michigan region.

Oakland County Employment Diversity Council (OCEDC)
Programs and Events

o Monthly Diversity Educational Forum Series

o Annual Employment Diversity Conference

o Annual Diversity Job Expo

o Annual Diversity Forum – Women In Leadership Summit

o The OCEDC Speakers Bureau (April 3, 2009 Launch date)

o Disabilities Expo (Launch September 2013)


Major Accomplishments

The Achievements experienced by the Oakland County Employment Diversity Council OVER THE PAST ELEVEN 11 YEARS include the following:


  • Established OCEDC and increased council membership/participants from 5 to over 350 Oakland County and southeast Michigan region governmental and community service agencies, private businesses and citizens.
  • Monthly Diversity Educational Forums with speakers from various agencies and organizations making presentations on a variety of topics related to Diversity, Inclusion, Culture, EEO and AA. Over 4000+ people attended this event over past 11 years! 
  • Monthly Educational Forum provides SHRM credits to HR professionals.
  • Promotion of January 2009 Cultural Excursion and Networking Extravaganza event at Charles H. Wright Museum of African-American History. Approximately 140 attendees.
  • Promotion and coordination of eight (8) annual Diversity Job Expos 2001 - 2008 at various locations within Oakland County. These highly successful events attracted over 420 employers and 8300+ job seekers during the past eight years.
  • Sponsorship of Eight (8) Forums on Workplace Diversity including two at the Glen Oaks Country Club, four at the Northfield Hilton in Troy, one @ The Met Hotel in Troy, and one at the St. George Cultural Center in Bloomfield Hills. This exciting luncheon event has attracted over 2435 attendees and featured former television anchor woman Doris Biscoe as the moderator and Oakland County’s own L. Brooks Patterson as a speaker during this highly acclaimed event. The 2006 Event attracted over 300 participants and featured Chuck Stokes as keynote speaker. KMR Diversity Theatre was our featured attraction for the November 2007 event. Over 250 people attended this well received affair.

·       Coordination and sponsorship of ten (10) Diversity Conferences. The conference segment of this event featured a variety of workshops designed to help area businesses gain the techniques and tools needed to create and maintain a diverse and inclusive workplace environment. In April 2005 and 2006 OCEDC collaborated with NCCJ and The Detroit Regional Chamber in two highly successful Regional Diversity Conferences which attracted over 700 attendees. The 2006 event which included Kelly Services as the presenting sponsor featured former Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer and Luke Visconti of Diversity, Inc. as the keynote speakers. 

·       The April 2007 Conference attracted over 300 attendees and included General Motors as the presenting sponsor and featured Stedman Graham as the keynote speaker.

·       The April 2008 Conference attracted over 275 attendees and included Oakland County Michigan Works as the presenting sponsor and featured Dennis Archer as the keynote speaker. Over 2380 individuals have attended this function over a 9 year period.

  • Sponsorship of Disability Awareness Day 2006 in conjunction with Judson Center.
  • Sponsorship and purchase of gas cards for job seekers distributed by Oakland County Michigan Works Career Centers.
  • Joint Venture with Michigan Roundtable for Diversity & Inclusion and Detroit Regional Chamber - Top 100 Diversity Forum “Why and How CEO Commitment is a Critical Factor in Successful Diversity Programs” Tuesday October 2, 2007 @ Detroit Athletic Club – 7:30am – 10:30am. Over 70 attendees participated in this event!
  • Coordinated Women in Leadership Summits, October 30, 2009, Carmen Harlan keynote speaker and October 29, 2010, keynote speaker Denise Illitch, Events attracted over 650 attendees!
  • Coordinated 8th Annual Diversity Conference on April 22, 2010, Tony Brown keynote speaker along with various workshop presenters. Event attracted over 130 attendees.
  • Coordinated 9th Annual Diversity Conference on June 8, 2011, Tim Wise keynote speaker along with various workshop presenters. Event attracted over 140 attendees
  • Coordinated 10th Annual Women In Leadership Summit, February 10, 2012, Michigan Secretary of State Ruth Johnson keynote speaker, along with moderator Judge Denise Langford-Morris, and panelist Debra Erhmann, Nipa Shaw, Dr. Soraya Orady and Oakland County Commissioner Helaine Zack. Event attracted over 210 attendees.
  • Coordinated 10th Annual Diversity Conference on July 12, 2012, Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson welcomed attendees to the event. Judge Phyllis McMillan and Ann Doyle served as keynote speakers, other guest speakers and panelist included; Kathleen LaTosch, Jay Kaplan, Reginald McCloud, Joy Calloway, Rick David, Art McClellan, Kerri Moran, Kevin McCormick. Music was provided by Tola Lewis along with a dynamic theatre performance by Alice Kennedy and her Diversity Theatre. Event attracted 220 attendees.