This is our inaugural list of Top DEI Leaders. This prestigious list recognizes the outstanding individuals who have demonstrated exceptional leadership, vision, and commitment to driving diversity, equity, and inclusion within their respective industries.
Andre Lessears Sr., is the Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer for UAB Health System, where he leads a strategy that fosters Inclusive Leadership to create a health system where patients and caregivers have a sense of belonging, dignity and respect.
Prior to joining UAB, Andre served as the Director for the Office of Diversity & Inclusion for Cleveland Clinic Akron General, where he led strategic initiatives that enables Cleveland Clinic Akron General caregivers to deliver care that is not only world class, but culturally competent. With his leadership Cleveland Clinic Akron General was designated as an Autism Friendly Hospital by the Autism Society.
In his career, Andre has helped design a number practices and programs that have been recognized by the National League of Cities, DiversityInc., the Association of ERGs and Councils and Black Pages Magazine. Andre has led panels and/or keynotes at numerous organizations and conferences including Ohio NAACP Conference, Ohio Diversity and Leadership Conference, Black Male Summit, Urban League Young Professionals and Civic Leadership Institute. Andre was recently named one of the Top 100 Chief Diversity Officers by the National Diversity Council.
A skilled trainer and facilitator, Andre has been recognized for his work facilitating critical conversations on intercultural communication, unconscious bias, building inclusive teams and developing effective Diversity and Inclusion recruitment and retention strategies. For his work Andre has been recognized by the National Black Caucus of Local Elected Officials and recognized as a Rising Star by the Tri-State Business Times. Andre holds a Bachelor’s degree from Walsh University (History) and he received his MBA in Organizational Development from the University of Dubuque. Andre also holds a Certified Diversity and Inclusion Professional designation from the Cornell University School of International Labor Relations (ILR). He is also a Qualified Administer (QA) for the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI).