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Raleigh Chamber awards CEO of The Diversity Movement for “championing change and positive impact in diversity, equity, and inclusivity”

RALEIGH, July 26, 2023 – The Raleigh Chamber named Donald Thompson, CEO and Co-founder of The Diversity Movement, winner of The Phil Freelon Diversity, Equity, and Inclusivity Award. The award is given annually to a leader who serves to “champion change and positive impact in diversity, equity, and inclusivity.” 

The award is named for Phil Freelon, one of the great architects in modern history, who was also a humanitarian deeply committed to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion in the Raleigh-Durham region and nationally. Freelon left an indelible mark on the practice of architecture, and his legacy transcends the brick and mortar of the buildings he designed. He personified the traits of great leaders who are committed to the health and welfare of their communities. 

“The Diversity Movement has created an employee experience platform that enables organizations to create workplace excellence through digital learning, cutting-edge content, and scalable programming,” said Donald Thompson, CEO and Co-founder of The Diversity Movement. “Through diversity-led initiatives, these organizations across the Triangle and nationwide are creating a better world for their employees, their families, and the communities they serve. This effort is part of our goal to authentically revolutionize the American workplace.” 

Thompson, recently named EY Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2023 Southeast Award winner, is a globally respected and sought-after business leader. As a CEO, speaker, investor, advisor, entrepreneur, and executive coach, he brings a wealth of experience and expertise to any organization. Thompson is a Certified Diversity Executive (CDE) and passionate about driving cultural transformation and delivering strong returns for employees and shareholders. 

Under his leadership, TDM has earned numerous accolades, including the Inc. 2021 Best in Business List in DE&I Advocacy and Fast Company’s 2022 “world-changing ideas.” In addition, Thompson is a three-time Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Companies winner, named to the Forbes Next 1000 List, the Business North Carolina Power 100 List, and winner of the 2023 Independent Press Distinguished Favorite Book Award in Leadership for Underestimated: A CEO’s Unlikely Path to Success.

“Don is a visionary. We take his big ideas and make content and products that empower thousands worldwide to create more welcoming, inclusive, and productive environments for their employees and communities,” said Jackie Ferguson, Vice President, Content and Programming and Co-founder, The Diversity Movement. “Above all, he is a good human, a wonderful father, and a dedicated husband. I am so proud of all he is and all he has accomplished.”

“I have had the honor of working with Don for the past three years and witnessed his inclusive leadership skills firsthand,” said Jamie Ousterout, Vice President, Client Success, The Diversity Movement. “Don is an amazing leader for our team, our clients, and the Triangle community. For me personally, I know that I am a much stronger, more empathetic leader due to his mentorship and coaching.”

Thompson serves the local and regional community on numerous boards across various industries, including marketing, health, and finance. He is an in-demand speaker and author, as well as host of the podcast “High Octane Leadership in an Empathetic World,” which delivers actionable leadership insights for creating culture-centric organizations and leaders. 

About The Diversity Movement

The Diversity Movement enables organizations to build and strengthen culture by tying real-world business outcomes to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) initiatives via a scalable subscription-based employee experience platform. TDM’s integrated approach creates inclusive culture through the application of data-informed insight, technology, and DEI expertise. The platform offers end-to-end education, from front-line employees to a leadership assessment tool that measures cultural competency in executive team building. 

TDM offers DEI Navigator for organizations who want to scale culture, as well as 400 original, digital learning lessons; 650+ award-winning micro-learning videos delivered in a “Netflix for DEI experience;” and analytics to track culture-building progress. “TDM Library” is a resource hub for organizations to find expert-curated multimedia content that transforms culture. TDM powers scalable and sustainable workplace excellence via a data-driven approach focused on results. For more information and resources, visit

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