Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Specialist

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Specialist

Northern Illinois Food Bank is seeking a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Specialist who is organized, detail-oriented, service-minded and enjoys being part of a dynamic team. This position will support ongoing work around the intentional integration of cultural competence, diversity, equity and inclusion across every facet of the food bank, with the understanding that it is an active and ongoing process involving structures, processes and people and not an isolated initiative.

The Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Specialist position participates in and supports the development, delivery and communication of programs, policies, practices and training that address matters of racial equity and social justice, as set forth in the organization’s strategic plan. Additionally, the DEI Specialist serves as a resource and consultant to team members and leadership, on the development and implementation of culturally responsive, differentiated, and equitable practices.

End date
Opportunity type
Administration (e.g., Finance, IT, HR)
Job responsibilities

Essential Functions
1. Provide support in strategic leadership in the areas of diversity, inclusion, and equity.
2. Implement, monitor progress, and recommend adjustments in connection with the Strategic Plan as it relates to matters of diversity, equity and inclusion.
3. Support and serve on the organization’s Equity Committee.
4. Serve on any diversity-related committees formed across the Feeding America network as requested.
5. Supporting the Vice President of Human Resources in providing counsel around organizational practices in the areas of diversity, inclusion, ensuring a consistent application of our DEI lens; inspired by the mission, vision and values of Northern Illinois Food Bank.
6. In collaboration with the Vice President of Human Resources and leadership, improve effectiveness and success in recruiting and retaining diverse staff. Specifically, the Specialist will be involved in internal compensation equity discussions and attend relevant community events to promote the employer brand, endorsing the organization as a nonprofit employer of choice in the Chicago suburbs, spotlighting our diverse and inclusive workplace and networking with prospective candidates.
7. Serve as a resource to the HR Manager to develop courses and curricula specific to diversity, equity and inclusion for team members. Specifically, the Specialist will promote, advise upon, and support curriculum development aimed at teaching and learning to think critically about cultural diversity. Such curricula will include topics such as race, gender, ethnicity, nation and nationhood, class, and religion and their intersections.
8. Actively research evolving best practices that address common challenges in educating the workforce about cultural competence, awareness of racial micro-aggressions, identity, social difference, and inequality, and train how to incorporate into their coaching and mentoring practices. The ideal candidate will become a legitimate expert in diversity, equity and inclusion practices, and will have a thirst for learning and exploring strategies and opportunities in this space.
9. Act as liaison to and develop strong relationships with the various diversity and inclusion related community groups and respond to diversity- and equity-related issues across the workforce as they arise.
10. Plan, develop, and market diversity and inclusion-focused educational opportunities and events for team members.
11. Work with the Agency Training and Development Manager in facilitating workshops focused on teaching our agencies how to communicate effectively with our community, ensuring professional growth in understanding the role of social and cultural factors in how we support our neighbors in need.
12. Act as a liaison between the food bank and local communities of color to identify opportunities for collaboration which support key strategies to improve access and equity across our service area.
13. Measure, steward, analyze and understand data and other key information and metrics as it relates to DEI.

Other Duties
Please note this job description is not designed to cover or contain a comprehensive listing of activities, duties or responsibilities that are required of the employee for this job. Other duties will be assigned, depending on department or company needs and priorities. Duties, responsibilities and activities may change at any time with or without notice.

Application qualifications

Required Education, Skills, and Experience
• Bachelor's degree in Human Resources or related field.
• 3+ years of experience working in fast-paced and demanding customer-focused position
• 3+ years of hands-on experience administering state, federal or program compliance
• Excellent interpersonal, presentation and communication skills
• The ability to handle sensitive and confidential information is a must
• Proven success working collaboratively with employees, including leaders as well as our agency network and Feeding America network
• Commitment to diversity and a strong interest in planning multicultural programs
• Exceptional written and oral communication skills
• Excellent organizational skills with the ability to prioritize a multitude of tasks by volume, urgency, etc.
• Detail-oriented and resourceful
• Strong work ethic and high level of integrity
• Tactful and discreet
• References should attest to the applicant’s ability to function in a leadership role
• Capacity to work with others in a high-functioning, collaborative, and innovative environment
• collaborative, resilient, flexible, diplomatic, confident, patient, and possessed of a sense of humor and professional presence
• Technologically savvy
• Demonstrated personal commitment to professional growth and to receiving and acting on constructive feedback
• Passion, energy and enthusiasm for our mission

Preferred Education, Skills, and Experience
• SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) or SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) credential.


The Northern Food Bank offers a team based environment, full benefits package, opportunity for upward mobility as well as employee recognition events & awards.

How to apply

For more information or to apply please visit our careers page.