Corporate America’s Leadership in Inclusion and Diversity

Cory Valente, Inclusion, Diversity and Employee Experience Leader for DOW, Inc.

This presentation will dive into how inclusion and diversity (I&D) can make organizations more innovative and productive and will highlight the leading role that corporate America is playing to advance equality and equity in our workplaces and in society. Other topics that will be covered include how corporate America views I&D, why allies are critical to progress, what barriers we need to overcome, and an honest look at the current state of affairs. This session is open to individuals at all levels of their I&D journey.

Speaker Bio

Cory currently serves as the North America Regional Leader for Inclusion, Diversity and Employee Experience. In this combined role, Cory is responsible for driving and implementing the I&D + EX strategy and providing expertise, consultation and support to business, functional, and ERG leaders and EX change champions in the region. He collaborates with HR on I&D + EX interventions that lead to measurable results and long-term behavior change and represents Dow externally consistent with the region’s outreach and thought leadership initiatives.

Previously, Cory led the Hybrids, Polymers & Silanes Product Development team in Dow Performance Silicones where he supported the discovery, development, and commercialization of new to the world technologies that combine a range of chemistry sets unique to Dow. Prior, he was the R&D leader for Strategic Recruiting and Research Assignments Program. In this capacity, Cory was a key architect for creating and implementing a sustainable & experiential 3-day R&D Academy for Dow’s scientists & engineers. He started his Dow career in 2011 in Dow Coating Materials, where he spent time in both R&D and scale-up, contributing to the commercialization of emulsion polymers including RHOPLEXTM 585, ROVACETM 9200 and EVOQUETM 3150.

In addition to the roles above, Cory served as the global leader for GLAD from 2015-2019, Dow’s employee resource group for LGBTQ+ and Ally employees. He led the global steering team to develop and implement a strategy aligned to culture change, employee engagement, talent development, and advocacy. In 2019, Cory chaired the All-ERG Leadership Academy and has been a vocal advocate on the intersection of I&D and innovation both internally and externally. In 2018, Cory participated in the Dow Leadership-in-Action program, where he partnered with a team of Dow employees and the Trailblazer Organization in Mumbai to curate a sustainable set of education modules on Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, Environment & Design.

Cory holds a PhD Degree in Organic Chemistry from York University in Toronto (Canada) and completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Northwestern University in Evanston (USA) with Nobel Laureate Sir Fraser Stoddart. Cory was named by Yahoo Finance & OUTstanding to their Top 50 Future LGBT leader’s list in 2019, was named a Champion of Inclusion at Dow in 2018, and received the 2017 American Chemical Society’s Regional Stanley C. Israel Award for advancing diversity in the chemical sciences. A native of Toronto, Cory currently lives in Midland, MI with his husband Matt and two cats.


Contact Jessie Owens for Zoom details.