Lori Gold Patterson
Lori co-founded Pixo, a software engineering consulting firm, in 1998. Since then, the staff size has grown from 3 to 33 people. A Mechanical Engineering graduate from the University of Illinois, Lori brings the experience of working in corporate management to the entrepreneurial adventure of being the business mind behind a team of bright software engineers and creatives at Pixo.
She spent the first 10 years of her career in corporate America working for Andersen Consulting (Accenture) in Chicago before she was hired away by Caterpillar to head up a 20 person product development team and then moved on to join Solo Cup for 5 years where she re-engineered processes and products throughout the company.
At each company she found herself in executive management with a vantage point to observe the ineffectiveness of impersonal, discriminatory management styles. She left large corporate America to create a different kind of business environment based on unconditional respect and trust and one that, even in a highly competitive industry, would provide a place where she and a diverse body of employees could achieve greatness without compromising their values and their families.
Being raised enmeshed in the black community and raising three racially and religiously diverse children with her childhood sweetheart of 33 years, Lori has a somewhat unique perspective on cultural inclusion. She brings this perspective into the operations of her company and the consulting she does for hundreds of startups and established organizations.
Lori chaired the local Business Association for many years and is currently the Chair of the county‘s Economic Development Corporation. Lori received the Woman on the Rise award from the Illinois State Treasurer’s Office, the Entrepreneurial Excellence in Management Award, the Athena Award and she’s proud to be a Leadership Illinois graduate and active alumni.
Diversity: Why you Want it and How to Achieve it
February 9, 2016 | 11:00 AM
Studies have shown that companies in the top quartile for gender or racial diversity are more likely to have financial returns above their national industry medians. In a recent survey of millennials, 86% of female and 74% of male millennials consider employers’ policies on diversity, equality and inclusion when deciding which company to work for. And for years studies have shown that diverse views make for better decisions, and thus drive a high-performance culture.
But how do we achieve diversity in our small, technical companies when we often have few opportunities to hire and we’re looking for specialists who are hard to come by? And how do we embrace our underrepresented employees so they stay and become part of the DNA of our companies?
In this session, Lori Gold Patterson presents stories that will illuminate specific actions you can take to achieve your diversity goals.