We had the pleasure of hosting The Miranda Brawn Diversity Leadership Annual Lecture at our Moorgate campus last month. This is the third year we have been involved with the lecture, and this year’s theme was 'Together we can make a positive change to the world and workplace’. The Miranda Brawn Diversity Leadership Foundation is a non-profit charity, founded by ULaw alumna Miranda Brawn in January 2016. The award-winning programme works to increase diversity across professional sectors in the UK and to close the diversity gap through award-giving, annual lectures and mentorship.
This year’s annual lecture was the largest and most successful to date with over 180 current and future young diversity leaders attending the lecture. To start proceedings off the audience was treated to a performance of Porgy and Bess’ ‘Summertime’ by Nadine Benjamin, winner of a Voice of Black Opera Award. An advocate for increased diversity within the opera industry, Nadine advised that you “cannot let the excuse of your circumstances hold you back”.
Sharing his thoughts on diversity and his involvement with various outreach programmes within the House of Commons was the Rt. Hon John Bercow MP, 157th speaker of the House. He agreed that the House of Commons still has a long way to go with inclusivity and diversity initiatives, stating it needs to acknowledge its collective responsibility to address these issues.
Dr Miranda Brawn said: “To close the gap, we need to include everyone and not just senior, but middle and lower management need to get on board.” She shared the foundation’s ambition to transform the lives of at least 25,000 by 2025.
Social activist, commentator and editor of Black History Magazine Dr Patrick Vernon discussed the Windrush scandal, highlighting the contribution of migrants to the UK for over 50 years. South African DJ and Social Media Coach, Tendai Chagweda gave a vision board workshop focused on goal-setting.
A panel discussion featuring guest speakers John Cooper QC of 25 Bedford Row, Sanjay Bhandari, Partner at EY, and Dr Frank Douglas, CEO of Caerus Executive, gave the audience an opportunity to ask questions based around the current education system, diversity and inclusion initiatives.
The closing keynote was given by Dame Fiona Woolf who said that society “needs to change to a culture of collaboration where every person feels empowered as well as accountable”.
Find out more about Miranda Brawn and her experience studying at The University of Law in her Set for Success profile.