Get ready to be inspired by Dr. Virnitia Dixon, a powerhouse in the world of diversity, equity, and inclusion. With a background in insurance and strategy, Virnitia has spent her career helping organizations extract potential and build high-performing teams. After realizing her true passion for people and culture, she pursued her doctorate in organizational leadership and later transitioned into her current role as Chief Diversity Officer at Santander. Virnitia's unique approach to DEI emphasizes the power of human connection and community, making her a key voice in the industry.
Dr. Dixon introduces and discusses the SAM model (Sponsorship, Advocacy, and Mentorship), explaining that each element carries its distinct importance in career advancement. Through mentorship programs focused on skill development, career and cultural navigation in advocacy, and social capital investment in sponsorship, individuals can maximize their opportunities for growth and success.
Don't miss the chance to learn from her insights on continuous growth and success in today's world, taking risks and leading with passion and purpose to create human connections and bridge the gaps in our society.
[02:38] Virnitia’s background
[08:10] Weighing risk vs. reward and saying yes
[10:45] Continuing to learn
[14:38] Building a community
[18:31] Finding mentors and sponsors
[23:43] Accepting feedback and listening to others’ truth about you
[28:52] Mindset and tapping into your authentic self
[32:14] Introspection and learning about yourself
[35:33] Lightning round questions
“Building bridges between people is the core of inclusion.” – Dr. Virnitia Dixon
“For me to be authentic and vulnerable, and share with you who I am, it opens the floor for you to do the same, and that’s how we create community.” – Dr. Virnitia Dixon
“The time in contemplation with oneself really helps us connect with others.” – Dr. Virnitia Dixon
What book has greatly influenced you?
“Good is Not Enough: And Other Unwritten Rules for Minority Professionals” by Keith R. Wyche
What is your favorite inspiring quote or saying?
Good better best. Never let it rest. Until your good is better and your better is best.
What is one word or moniker you would use to describe yourself?
Blessed (and privileged to serve)
What is one change you've implemented that made your life better?
Understanding it’s the journey and not the destination. Knowing myself. Having a balance of confidence and humility.
What power song would you want playing as you walk out onto a stage?
"Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield
Dr. Virnitia Dixon is the Chief Diversity Officer and Head of the Diversity, Equity,
and Inclusion Office at Santander US. Prior to joining Santander, Dr. Dixon was an executive coach and consultant working with Fortune 500 senior executives to transform corporate culture through leadership development, organizational effectiveness, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. Her background is primarily in financial services, where she previously held roles as a Corporate VP of Strategy for New York Life and VP of Operations for Travelers Property Casualty. Dr. Dixon is an Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (IPEC) certified professional coach and holds a Doctorate of Management in Organizational Leadership from the University of Phoenix, a Masters of Business Administration in Management, and a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies, both from the University of Hartford.
A world traveler, patent-holder, speaker, and innovator, Dr. Hendricks is most proud of her work in the community where she supports charities focused on ensuring basic human needs. Dr. Dixon's life mission is "to be a blessing to the lives of many, one person at a time."
LinkedIn URL: https://www.linkedin.com/in/dr-virnitia-j-hendricks/