May 20, 2021

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – A series of summit meetings is connecting various business partners committed to diversity and inclusion with key opportunities found throughout the IU community. The series is co-sponsored by IU’s Office of Business Partnerships (OBP) and Office of Vice President for Research.

Several of IU’s major business partners, including Eli Lily, Bank of America, Cook Medical, Comcast and Chase, are actively seeking ways to support and advance racial equity and have participated in the summits.

“This summit series is intended to promote and highlight racial justice research, resources, programs, and events supporting diversity and inclusion efforts at IU,” said Valerie Gill, associate vice president of business partnerships. “It creates connections between faculty and partners to forge new collaborations committed to supporting communities of color.”

Throughout the first and second summit, held in October 2020 and March 2021, 10 researchers at IU were featured. Topics included:

  • Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on People of Color
  • Diversifying Talent, Talent Pipelines and Organizational Leadership
  • Strategic Community Engagement and Policy for Equitable Communities
  • Supporting Critical Research with Targeted Outcomes for Justice and Restitution

Two additional virtual racial partner summits will be held in fall and winter of 2021. More information about the events and the registration links will be available on the OBP website.

Fred H. Cate, IU vice president for research, emphasized the urgent demand for racial justice in the United States during his opening remarks at the summit in March.

“I am particularly delighted that the summit focuses on IU’s ongoing efforts to address racial injustice and on how we can improve our responses, not just within the university, but more broadly throughout the business community with our partners,” said Cate.

In an effort to showcase IU’s racial justice and social equity programs, the OBP team has added a new racial justice program page to its website. The program page highlights over 150 ongoing and planned resources, programs, events, talent diversification and research projects on issues related to workforce diversity, equity, and inclusion. To learn more, please visit

Contact for more information about these important projects.


About the IU Office of Business Partnerships

The IU Office of Business Partnerships is the front door for industry partners seeking to cultivate strategic relationships with IU faculty, researchers, and students. Collaborating with industry leaders and entrepreneurs around the world, we build meaningful, sustainable, and mutually beneficial partnerships in support of education and research across Indiana and beyond.