Brave. Bold. Pioneers.

Diversity was our business long before it became a buzzword.

On a mission to bring passionate leaders together to transform the world.

For nearly 30 years, our goal has been to create transformative and measurable change in the workplace.


Since then, we’ve worked with countless businesses and diversity champions across the country who share our commitment to building a bright and equitable future for all.


Our fight continues.

“Creating places and spaces of belonging is central to our core values”

Malissa Adams

Our Story

Bound by a shared passion for creating change.

Cecilia Stanton Adams & Malissa Adams met as teenagers at the now well-known Hetrick-Martin Institute in New York. Even then, they were driven by a passion for bringing people together across differences. When they reconnected 20 years later through social media, they founded Stanton Adams Consulting to help organizations across the country identify and address diversity, equity, and inclusion challenges.


(They also got married in 2011!)

After decades of organizational diversity work, they knew they needed to do more to create transformational and sustainable change.

A driving force in the evolution of diversity, equity & inclusion.

​In 2020, Cecilia and Malissa expanded to include The Diversity Institute – a brave space for diversity champions to come together, learn from industry experts, and have an authentic dialogue about the successes and challenges of their industry.

The Diversity Institute at-a-glance:

A mission-driven Public Benefit Corporation


Black, woman, and LGBTQ-owned organization with a diverse and experienced staff


40+ years of collective experience in business, diversity, equity, and inclusion


Experience working with nonprofit, public, private, and educational organizations


Founded Minnesota Diversity Equity and Belonging Community of Practice (MNDEB)

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Meet Our Founders

Cecilia Stanton Adams

Co-founder & Board Chair

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Cecilia is a sociologist and entrepreneur who is committed to creating innovative approaches to strengthening leadership development and diversity efforts. She is most noted for her ability to foster paradigm shifts, change behavior, and empower individuals, teams, and communities. She is an award-winning trainer and was recognized for outstanding research on unconscious bias by the American Psychological Association.

​Stanton Adams is a visionary leader with more than 15 years of experience as a strategic diversity expert. She has worked with educational institutions, non-profits, government agencies, and corporations in developing and executing strategic diversity initiatives.

Malissa Adams

Co-founder & President

  • LinkedIn

Malissa is a racial equity expert with a passion for coaching leaders. She was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY where she was inspired by her parents to pursue a career in the nonprofit industry. Through coaching and training, she has made a positive impact in the Twin Cities community. She is most noted for implementing collaborative, community-designed solutions for housing homeless Minnesotans.

​With over 15 years of experience in operations management and organizational development in the public and private sectors, Adams understands how to motivate others and act as an effective liaison between organizations and members of under-served communities.

Our Partners

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