Leadership can no longer be a passive privilege. Those who are called to serve today must embrace it as a call to action. ---Michele Lawlis Shelton
As a professional speaker, author, coach and consultant, Michele guides courageous organizational leaders beyond barriers that impede DEI success. She is on a mission to support communities and organizations committed to the promotion and practice of inclusivity and investing in the creation of cultures that acknowledge, affirm and add value to the total experience of every person under their influence. Over the last twenty years, Michele's career in pursuit of justice and equality for others included stages where she has personally seen, suffered, and survived the -isms, poor leadership, and toxic work cultures. To that end, she remains unapologetically committed to empowering others to join her in confronting and conquering the injustices affecting women, people of color, and all at work and beyond...
Michele is former Executive Director of the Office of Diversity & Equality for the Commonwealth of Kentucky Personnel Cabinet where she provided oversight to EEO, affirmative action & diversity strategies for 33,000+ employees. Prior to joining the administration of Kentucky's 61st Governor, Michele served as a civil rights compliance officer with Louisville Metro Government during the administrations of two mayors. Her contributions extend into the nonprofit and private sectors, as she provided visionary leadership and oversight to race relations, community building, supplier diversity, and organizational development initiatives. In recognition of her dedication and service, Michele has been featured in The Louisville Defender, Courier-Journal, Today's Woman Magazine, radio and television news. She is also a commissioned member of the Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels, the highest honor bestowed by the Governor of the Commonwealth.
Michele is an alumna of the University of Louisville and Louisville Seminary. She is currently working on her fourth and solo title, The Simplicity of Diversity, which will be released later this year. Michele is available on an international basis to keynote & consult.
Photo by Jamie Rhodes
In addition to the contributions of her professional career, Michele felt a calling to further support women and single mothers with overcoming adversity to achieve their spiritual, personal, and professional goals through the display of Divine Insight & Vision in Action. Since 2001 she has been a mentor and coach, keynote speaker, and retreat facilitator for community groups, churches, and organizations including, but not limited to, Kentucky Association for Women in Colleges, Kentucky Community and Technical Colleges (Louisville, Lexington, and Owensboro), Salvation Army, YMCA, and many others. Grateful and equipped by her own journey, Michele continues to dedicate her voice to the advancement of women through education, employment, and entrepreneurship.
"I realized that I am worth so much more, and once I can fully do that, I will never question my worth as a woman/mother. Also, I understand that I can not just run from a problem. I have to make changes for the future, even though it is much easier right then to ignore it."
"Michele was able to help me put some things in my life into a bit of a different perspective...or at least get me to see that I need to be more open to others. I came away from this seminar with a different mindset about single parenthood and striving to reach the goals in my life."
Ready to Work / Work & Learn
Spring Break Retreat
Owensboro Community & Technical College (OCTC)
Source: RTW/WTL Newsletter, April 2008