01.
Our Leadership
The global LGBT+ business network
We help Out Leaders and companies connect with talent, transform organizations and compete on social purpose.

Out Leadership grew out of two industry-specific business initiatives — Out on the Street® and Out in Law — and three cross-industry talent accelerators for LGBT+ leaders: OutNEXT, OutWOMEN, and Quorum. We began in 2011 with 6 founding firms and now count more than 65 of the world’s leading companies across 13 industries as members.

In every global business sector, Out Leadership has been instrumental in making LGBT+ equality a priority in global C-Suites. Through executive events, talent initiatives and periodic communications, we lead the conversations that inspire Out Leaders and multinational companies to grow business through inclusion.

Our Mission

To create Return on Equality, we provide global businesses with the tools for innovation and transformation. Change begins at the top, so we create Summits, Talent Accelerators and Strategic Insights for CEOs who seek to realize the positive business impacts of inclusion.

02.
About Todd Sears
Todd Sears is a globally regarded business leader and equality entrepreneur
He advises leaders and organizations to help them tap the dividends of inclusion
Todd Sears

When Todd first established Out on the Street in 2011, Out Leaders were just mobilizing as a business voice. Through Return on Equality, a concept he introduced in his first summit, he has helped them become a cultural force.

Todd has worked as an investment banker, financial advisor and diversity leader. He created the first team of financial advisors on Wall Street to focus on the LGBT+ community, bringing $1.5 billion in new assets to Merrill Lynch. Todd has also led pioneering equality initiatives for Merrill Lynch and Credit Suisse.

He serves on the non-profit boards of the Williams Institute of UCLA, The Palette Fund, the Global Equality Fund of the United States Department of State and Lambda Legal, and on the National Advisory Council of the Stonewall National Archives & Museum. Todd was founding chair of Jeffrey Fashion Cares, which he ran for 10 years; he is a graduate of Duke University.

Supporting a diverse workplace isn’t just the morally right thing to do, it has the benefit of making companies stronger and more successful. Out Leadership is an enormously important leader in this cause; I'm extremely proud to join its board.
Peter Grauer
Chairman of Bloomberg L.P., Member, Out Leadership Global Advisory Board
Out Leadership’s work is instrumental in creating more LGBT inclusive workplaces and developing the next generation of business leaders.
Beth Brooke-Marciniak
Global Vice Chair, Public Policy, EY; Member, Out Leadership Global Advisory Board
Creating a workplace that is fair and inclusive for every employee sharpens a company’s competitive edge, promotes innovative thinking, and helps deliver unique solutions for clients. Morgan Stanley is proud to support the conversation about and the movement toward full LGBT+ equality.
James Gorman
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Morgan Stanley
03.
Membership
We are led by visionary CEOs

Out Leadership wouldn’t exist without a generation of change-making CEOs. We’ve successfully made the business case for LGBT+ equality a guiding principle for many of the world’s most influential business leaders — and they helped us built the world’s most influential LGBT+ network.

05.
Equality Entrepreneurs
Our Team
We grow business, transform leadership and make the world richer through inclusion.
Todd Sears
Todd Sears
Founder & Principal

Todd Sears is the Founder and Principal of Out Leadership, the global LGBT+ business network trusted by CEOs and multinational companies to drive Return on Equality®.

Out Leadership creates executive events and insights that help businesses realize the economic growth and talent dividend derived from inclusion, and convenes three groundbreaking talent accelerators: OutNEXT, the first global leadership development program for the next generation of LGBT+ talent; Quorum, which seeks to advance the conversation around LGBT+ diversity in corporate governance; and OutWOMEN, which convenes and celebrates LGBT+ women in business.

Todd began his career as an investment banker before moving to Merrill Lynch to become a Financial Advisor, where he created the first team of financial advisors on Wall Street to focus on the LGBT+ community and brought $1.5 billion of new assets to the firm. Todd then moved into diversity leadership, pioneering equality initiatives first at Merrill Lynch and then at Credit Suisse.

Sears serves on the non-profit boards of the Williams Institute of UCLA, The Palette Fund, the Global Equality Fund of the United States Department of State and Lambda Legal, and on the National Advisory Council of the Stonewall National Archives & Museum; he was the founding chair of Jeffrey Fashion Cares, which he ran for 10 years. He is a graduate of Duke University.

 

 

Wes Werbeck
Wes Werbeck
Chief Operating Officer

Wes Werbeck joined Out Leadership in September 2013. As Chief Operating Officer, he works closely with the Founder and Principal on Out Leadership’s corporate growth and strategic plans. Wes leads the team and our client services functions, and also oversees our information technology and business process systems.

In his previous role as Director of Advisory & Client Services, Wes led significant revenue and membership growth, as membership expanded from 19 corporate members to the 65+ members we count today. He has managed key consulting engagements and assisted in the launch of OL-iQ. In 2018, Wes was recognized as one of Business Equality Network’s (BEQ) inaugural Top 40 LGBTQ Leaders Under 40; he also sits on the NYC Young Leaders Council for Lambda Legal. He has over 10 years of experience in professional services; in his prior role as a Tax Senior Accountant at EY, he helped lead the firm’s LGBT ERG in Boston, MA. Wes holds a BS in Business Administration from Northeastern University. In his free time, he enjoys traveling and cooking with his partner, Jasen.

Marco Martinot
Marco Martinot
Chief Financial Officer

Marco Martinot joined Out Leadership in 2017; as Chief Financial Officer he is responsible for the overall financial direction at the company, and works closely with the Founder and Principal on Out Leadership’s corporate growth and strategic plans. Within finance, he leads the financial planning and projections process, as well as controller, treasury, accounting, tax, and internal audit functions. Marco has over 20 years of experience in corporate and investment banking and in his prior roles he was Managing Director at Centerview Partners and Investment Banking Director at Barclays. Marco holds an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. An avid sports and traveling enthusiast, Marco is also passionate about diversity inclusion and equality.

Dave Hughes
Dave Hughes
Managing Director, Head of Communications

Dave Hughes has run our communications efforts since 2014. In this role he works closely with our Founder and Principal to guide messaging strategy, manages our website and social media content, coordinates communications around our global events, and leads insights projects including OutNEWS, #OutLEADER, and the CEO Business Briefs. In previous roles, he learned about the financial services industry at D.E. Shaw and communications strategy at Penn Schoen Berland; he holds a B.A. in English Literature from New York University. Passionate about social justice and human rights, Dave also loves live music, reading, and meditating.

Luigi Lewin
Luigi Lewin
Director of Sales

Luigi Lewin joined Out Leadership in March 2018 as Director of Sales. In this role, Luigi works closely with our Founder and Principal on further expanding Out Leadership’s roster of global member firms, with a particular focus on new countries and industries. He also partners with our Founder and COO on select business development opportunities. Luigi spent 25 years in the financial services industry prior to joining Out Leadership, at Morgan Stanley, Barclays, and Credit Suisse. He holds an M.B.A. in Marketing from Fordham University and a B.A. in Political Science from Oberlin College, and is a member of the National Board of Governors at the Human Rights Campaign. Dedicated to working to further human rights, gender diversity, and social justice, Luigi also loves traveling, cycling, and Latin American history and culture.

French Smith
French Smith
Director of Global Initiatives

French Smith-O’Connor joined Out Leadership in 2015. As Director of Global Initiatives, French is responsible for our programming, content curation and speaker engagement, working closely with our partner organizations. She produces our annual summits in New York, London, Hong Kong and Sydney. A New Yorker at heart, French has over 10 years of experience in international affairs, and has worked or lived in as many countries. With prior experience at the United Nations, in human rights, gender equity and social justice, she leverages an extensive network in service of Out Leadership’s mission. French holds an MA in International Affairs from the New School and a BA in Anthropology and Latin American Studies from Wesleyan University. When she’s not on the road, you’ll probably find her gardening, DIY-ing something or deep in the latest feminist literature.

Paul Wendel
Paul Wendel
Manager, Talent Accelerators

Paul Wendel joined Out Leadership in 2017 as Manager, Talent Accelerators. In this role he is responsible for the planning, coordination, and execution of OL’s programs and talent initiatives – OutNEXT, the world’s only global leadership development program for the next generation of LGBT+ leaders; OutWOMEN, connecting and supporting LGBT+ women in business; and Quorum, focused on increasing LGBT+ representation at the corporate board level. Paul holds a B.A. in International Studies and Theology from Boston College and an Ed.M. in Higher Education Administration from Harvard University. A lifelong soccer player, Paul plays with the New York Ramblers, the first LGBT+ soccer club in the world.

Kenya Simon
Kenya Simon
Manager, Member Relations

Kenya Simon joined Out Leadership in 2018. In her role, Kenya is a primary point of contact for our member companies, overseeing Out Leadership’s customer service processes and facilitating engagement opportunities to maximize member’s ROI. Kenya holds a B.A. in Music Industry and Public Relations from Monmouth University, and has a background in the entertainment and fashion industry. After a decade-long career working for music industry giants such as Sony and Warner Music, Kenya received an opportunity to join PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP), where she was most recently part of the Marketing & Sales team focusing on client entertainment, alumni relations, and client experience reporting. During her time there, she found a passion for diversity & inclusion work, and notably secured the first ever official sponsorship of NYC Pride and WorldPride from a “Big 4” financial services firm. When she isn’t working to further Out Leadership’s global mission, you can usually find her on the way to a concert or obsessing over the looks at a local drag show.

Teela Rumfelt
Teela Rumfelt
Events Coordinator

Teela is the Events Coordinator for Out Leadership. In this role, she works closely with the Director of Global Initiatives on the execution of the Global Summits, and also provides logistical support for the Talent Accelerator and internal events. Previously, she worked in Investment Banking Operations. Teela graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2013 with a B. A. in Communication Studies and loves reading and traveling and is an active volunteer with Cheer New York.

Christine Townsley
Christine Townsley
Associate

Christine joined Out Leadership as an intern in the summer of 2018 and has moved into a full-time role as Associate. She works closely with our Director of Communications to produce insights content and support events communications, and with our Manager, Talent Accelerators to plan and coordinate Out Leadership’s Talent Accelerator projects, including OutNEXT, OutWOMEN, and Quorum. A recent graduate with previous roles in direct-services non-profit work and research; she holds a B.A. in Psychology and Minor in Economics from Duke University. She is passionate about diversity and mental health advocacy, and enjoys cooking, rock-climbing, and puzzles.

Alysha Lalji
Alysha Lalji
Social Media Consultant
Margaret Lu
Margaret Lu
Generalist Intern

Margaret Lu joined Out Leadership in December 2018. She works with our Director of Sales to further expand Out Leadership’s global member firms, as well as multiple members of the team to assist with various strategic project deliverables. She began her career in insurance strategy with C-Suite executives, then shifted to high-net-worth underwriting. Margaret is passionate about LGBT+ equality and involved in organizations such as Out Women in Business, Out for Undergrad, Lesbians Who Tech, Open Finance, Out in Tech, The Women’s Sports Foundation, Athlete Ally, who she is a Pro Ambassador for, and more. She holds a B.A. in Psychology and Business Management from Columbia University, where she was a member of the Varsity Fencing Team. She is a US National Team Member, Fencing World Champion, 6-time National Champion, NCAA Champion, and 4-time Ivy League Champion, representing the New York Athletic Club. In addition to fencing and attending queer events in NYC, Margaret is interested in the intersection of global food security and philanthropic business models. 

Greg Borel
Greg Borel
Senior Advisor
Deborah Freer
Deborah Freer
Senior Advisor
Mike Fuller
Mike Fuller
Senior Advisor
Matt Fust
Matt Fust
Senior Advisor
Nina Link
Nina Link
Senior Advisor
Bob Witeck
Bob Witeck
Senior Advisor
Mike Rogers
Mike Rogers
Director of

Photography

Meghan Shea
Meghan Shea
Producer, Writer,

Director

David Flood
David Flood
Producer, Writer, Director
Fiona Chong
Fiona Chong
Writer, Producer, Director
Wylie
Wylie
Director of Human Relations, #OutPuppy
06.
Our Commitment
We’re dedicated to LGBT+ equality in every aspect of our lives

Beyond our offices, our team is passionately dedicated to furthering the cause of LGBT+ equality. Out team actively volunteers their time and donates to non-profit causes.

Additionally, Out Leadership makes charitable donations at the major donor or greater level to the following organizations each year: Lambda Legal, The Williams Institute, Pride in Diversity, Jeffrey Fashion Cares.

07.
Advisors
Our Global Advisory Board
Out Leadership’s Global Advisory Board provide our team with essential strategic advice on our global initiatives. Our board includes leaders of some of the world’s most influential institutions, and we are grateful for their counsel.
Lloyd Blankfein
Lloyd Blankfein
CEO and Chairman, Goldman Sachs (Emeritus)
Beth Brooke-Marciniak
Beth Brooke-Marciniak
Global Vice Chair, Public Policy, EY
Lord John Browne
Lord John Browne
Executive Chairman,

L1 Energy

Gigi Chao
Gigi Chao
Executive Vice Chairman, Cheuk Nang (Holdings) Limited
Irene Dorner
Irene Dorner
Former President and CEO, HSBC USA (Emeritus)
Brian Duffy
Brian Duffy
CEO, Greenberg Traurig, LLP
Peter Grauer
Peter Grauer
Chairman, Bloomberg LP
Ken Mehlman
Ken Mehlman
Global Head of Public Affairs, KKR
Noel Quinn
Noel Quinn
Chief Executive, Global Commercial Banking, HSBC
Lee Schreter
Lee Schreter
Chairperson of the Board of Directors, Littler
Kathleen Sebelius
Kathleen Sebelius
21st Secretary of Health & Human Services; Former Governor of Kansas
Dr. Ashley Steel
Dr. Ashley Steel
Former Vice Chair, KPMG LLP
Kenji Yoshino
Kenji Yoshino
Chief Justice Earl Warren Professor of Constitutional Law, NYU School of Law
Dr. Allan Zeman
Dr. Allan Zeman
Chairman, Lan Kwai Fong Group
08.
Partners
Out Leadership is a certified B Corp, dedicated to driving LGBT+ equality forward worldwide
Our social mission is at the root of everything we do, and we work in close partnership with other institutions in the LGBT+ community to create change, including the Human Rights Campaign, Stonewall UK, Pride in Diversity, Community Business and the Global Equality Fund, part of the U.S. Department of State.
09.
Our Allies
Organizations we support and who support us
10.
FAQ
FAQ
What makes Out Leadership different from other LGBT-focused groups and organizations?
Out Leadership is a B Corp and the only organization in the LGBT+ space that operates globally with a focus solely on business. Our engagement with our members is deeper than simply buying a table at a gala. We create the space to convene impactful conversations throughout the year, with employees of all levels, globally. Our summits are designed to further the conversation at the intersection of the LGBT+ community and business, and they create tactical take-aways for attendees. Our talent initiatives are the first and only global programs aimed at developing LGBT+ emerging, women, and corporate governance leaders.

What is the easiest way to engage with Out Leadership?
Membership. Out Leadership hosts events and initiatives for LGBT+ and ally leaders, at all career levels, in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Australia. Membership in Out Leadership entitles a company to send attendees to these opportunities free of charge.

How does my company become a member?
After conversations on engagement with the Out Leadership team, companies that wish to become members of Out Leadership can simply notify our team to confirm intent to join and request an invoice to pay the membership fee. If your company is interested in becoming a member of Out Leadership please reach out to membership@outleadership.com.

What is the price of membership?
Membership pricing is available on request.

Are there opportunities for individuals to become members?
Currently, Out Leadership only offers corporate memberships.

How long is each membership term?
The annual membership fee covers the calendar year, January 1 to December 31. Companies that wish to remain members of Out Leadership must renew each year.

Our company’s HR/Diversity and ERG budgets are very tight, how do you suggest we find funding for membership?
Our companies view membership in Out Leadership as a business and talent development opportunity and a way to engage the business side, in addition to HR/Diversity. We often see multiple departments contributing to the membership fee. Since membership in Out Leadership is also global, many companies split the fee between regional budgets. Some companies pay for membership from marketing, business development, or specific business lines; a few pay from executive office budgets.

How many member companies renew their membership each year?
Out Leadership member companies renew at a rate in excess of 90% year-over-year.

What are the opportunities for my company to work with Out Leadership to drive equality?
Out Leadership has 11 official partners in the LGBT+ and diversity and inclusion space, and we work with more than 20 other supporting nonprofits and NGOs. In the past we have convened our member companies to speak out against anti-business and anti-LGBT+ state legislation, sign historic amicus briefs around LGBT+ equality, and support LGBT+ communities abroad.

How can we best engage the C-suite in LGBT+ inclusion?
Todd Sears often speaks at executive committee or partners meetings about the impact of LGBT+ inclusion, providing leaders with specific takeaways and best practices on how they can make a difference and drive business results. He is happy to waive his normal speaking fee for member companies.

Can Out Leadership assist with our internal LGBT+ programming?
Yes, we are always happy to help our member companies. We can schedule a phone call or in-person meeting to brainstorm how current or proposed programming can be more effective.

Are there opportunities to connect with the Out Leadership network outside the normal summits and initiatives?
Yes, Out Leadership holds quarterly in-person meetings in the United States to discuss our programming and solicit feedback from our Leadership and Diversity Leadership Committee Members. We hold spring meetings in Europe and Asia and plan quarterly global LC and DLC calls as well. In addition to helping drive Out Leadership’s direction, these events also provide attendees with an opportunity to interact with each other.

My company wants to go deeper and understand our employee sentiment and business opportunity around LGBT+ inclusion, is that type of project provided through membership?
OL-iQ, our LGBT+ inclusion diagnostic tool is can provide your company with a comprehensive snapshot into its LGBT+ inclusion efforts across seven key dimensions. Should you wish to delve deeper, measure employee sentiment and develop a full strategy for improvement, Out Leadership is happy to provide bespoke advisory services separate from annual membership.

What’s the best way to drive visibility and create impact?
Sponsor one of our events or initiatives. Out Leadership works closely with sponsors to set goals and identify the best way to drive impact. Sponsors receive significantly more visibility by promoting their brand in the market. They also have the opportunity to engage deeper by collaborating with us on content, sending more attendees, inviting clients, and building strategic business development opportunities.

How can my company engage beyond sending attendees to events?
There are a number of ways to engage more deeply with Out Leadership that do not involve any extra monetary commitment beyond the annual membership fee.


Nominate speakers: We regularly share draft agendas and event ideas with our members, if there is a leader at your company who would be a good addition to a panel or other speaking opportunity, please let us know.


Involve clients: Member companies are allowed to use their spots to our events and initiatives as they see fit. A great way to drive ROI is to invite clients to attend along with your employees.


Take OL-iQ: We’ve recently launched an LGBT+ inclusion diagnostic that gives companies a comprehensive, business-focused snapshot into their LGBT+ inclusion efforts. Member companies can take it and receive a custom report free of charge.


Sign up for OutNEWS: Every two weeks we digest the most important news at the intersection of the LGBT+ community and business. Sign up on our website to make sure you and your employee network are receiving OutNEWS.


Check out our CEO Business Briefs: We have developed short, tactical primers for leaders and employees travelling to 16 countries. These briefs provide a great overview of the landscape for LGBT+ people in those countries, as well as talking points for how leaders can tie LGBT+ inclusion to their business. You can find our CEO Business Briefs on our website.


Have us assist with bespoke events: We are happy to work with companies to support any internal events, whether it be by suggesting speakers or inviting attendees. If an opportunity to engage Out Leadership comes up, please email us at info@outleadership.com to let us know how we could help.