R. Roosevelt Thomas
May 24, 1944 - May 17, 2013
It is a Relay Race
R. Roosevelt Thomas, Jr. has passed the baton, and we want to thank him. He helped carry that baton through a wonderful and impactful part of the journey of addressing differences, a movement that has changed our civilization.
No one person starts a movement, but like the beginning of the universe and the beginning of life on earth, the pre-conditions and other ingredients are just there and then begin to take shape. Movements are born in the same way. The pre-conditions and catalysts are there - the frustrations, opportunities, pain-points, levers and fulcrums-and people standing on different parts of the earth start getting similar ideas about the need to challenge what is.
This journey to address differences in our neighborhoods, towns, cities, states, nations and world has been long. It is hard to say when it started...probably when there were two people vs. one. It has had many twists and turn and setbacks. In the past century, it took a leap forward. Roosevelt was a major part of that leap. He carried the baton (along with others) at a time when the United States was ready for a leap. He stood tall and guided the journey forward. In 1990, he put the conversation around diversity on center stage on the desk of CEOs around the world of work with his ground-breaking Harvard Business Review article, "From Affirmative Action to Affirming Diversity,” and the world was changed.
The baton has passed through many hands and through many milestones, from ground-breaking legislation to individual and collective actions to make a difference in our society, our organizations and in our individual lives.
We at KJCG are proud to be a part of this journey and to have known Roosevelt as a colleague. He was a gentle, caring soul who lived his values of change and valuing differences.
Roosevelt, thank you for your contributions!!
Judith H. Katz
Frederick A. Miller
The Kaleel Jamison Consulting Group, Inc.
For more of the history of the journey, see The Promise of Diversity: Over 40 Voices Discuss Strategies for Eliminating Discrimination in Organization (Irwin, 1994) - out of print
1953 - 1998
Marjane Jensen was an organizational consultant and Vice President of The Kaleel Jamison Consulting Group, Inc.
While at the Firm, Marjane assisted organizations with issues of inclusion, especially the development and valuing of nonexempt employees, white women, people of color, and gays and lesbians. After graduating magna cum laude with a psychology degree from Indiana University - where she was honored as Woman of the Year - she used her work as a school psychologist to focus on the inclusion of students with disabilities. Marjane earned her master's degree in psychology and her doctorate in industrial/organizational psychology from Purdue University. Before joining Kaleel Jamison in 1990, she served as the EEO and Benefits Manager for DowBrands, Inc. In 1997 she became a diplomat from the Gestalt Institute of Cleveland.
Marjane’s clients benefited from her ability to focus attention on people at each level of the system and on the challenges that change presents in both a personal and professional life. Her compassion and directness created close, caring relationships with her clients and colleagues.
Delorese Ambrose (1949 - 2009)
Founder of Ambrose Consulting & Training, LLC, Delorese Ambrose provided coaching and training for such notable clients as Boeing, Hallmark Cards, KPMG, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the Internal Revenue Service, the Federal Reserve Bank, Shell Oil Co., the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. As a faculty member of the Institute of Management Studies, she lectured throughout the U.S. and in Canada, Amsterdam, Brussels, London, Manchester, and Scotland.
Delorese's academic life stretched across three decades. Besides her engagement with the Institute, she was an assistant professor at Brooklyn College, City University of New York, from 1975 to 1980, and adjunct professor of management from 1980 to 1998 at Carnegie Mellon University, where she also served as assistant dean of the School of Urban and Public Affairs. From CMU she moved to the corporate world, joining the Alcoa Foundation, and during that time she realized that the world could offer a much larger classroom. She began to share her inspiring lessons at conferences and seminars internationally.
Her life’s work is immortalized in numerous publications, including her three books: Healing the Downsized Organization, Leadership: The Journey Inward, andMaking Peace with Your Work: An Invitation to Find Meaning in The Madness. Her contributions have not gone unnoticed: in 1995, Pittsburgh Magazine named her one of Pittsburgh’s 25 Most Powerful Women, and she also received the coveted Emil Limbach Teaching Award.
Delorese passed away at the age of 60 after a two-year bout with breast cancer. To her family she was simply "Della" or "Dew," a nickname gleaned from her maiden initials. To her beloved grandchildren, she was "Nnena," meaning "my father’s mother" in the language of the African Igbo tribe and chosen in homage to the royal roots of her maternal ancestry. Both names are fitting. Delorese was like the dew that comes with the dawn of a new day, refreshing the lives of those who came in contact with her. She was also a woman of regal bearing, comfortable among queens but never losing the common touch. She was a beautiful, positive, and elegant role model for people from all walks of life.
1945 - 2003
Luis Sanchez meant it when he told people to keep in touch. If you were one of his ever-growing number of friends, he would often reach out through phone calls, cards, or emails, which always captured his warmth, humor, and spirit.
"Hi to all my dear friends and colleagues curious to know 'was' up' with that guy sometimes known as Luigi, other times ... Sanchezkowitz, Speedy Gonzalez, the Mofungo Kid, hey you, etc.,'' began one mass e-mail. "I am delighted to inform you that 'T' day is quickly arriving. I'll be making my move to Tampa on March 23. It is exciting, and I'll provide snippets of this as I step off on this new journey. Let's stay in touch!!! Amor y abrazos, Luis.''
Luis sent this email to some of his friends after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. With the help of surgery and chemotherapy, he lived a remarkable 15 months more before his passing in 2003.
"Talk about a spirit that was tough to beat,'' said one of his friends, Jack Cullin, who recalled going to visit an ailing Luis in Florida only to find he was in a meeting with the mayor at city hall.
Luis was also part of the the Human Resource Consortium, a partner in Soul-Based Growth Strategies LLC, and founding partner of Access Florida, a statewide minority business and educational development initiative. He wanted his Latino community to be acknowledged and his fellow Latinos to succeed.
“I really think that is what drove him,” said his wife, Binnie. “He was unwavering in that goal until the very end.”
Edna Negron, a friend and former colleague, recalled their instant connection. “He was just a really good guy,” she said. “He wanted to make sure that the young Latino professionals were supported by their elders.”
1965 - 2011
An accomplished actor, dancer, writer, and trainer, Arthur Brown partnered with The Kaleel Jamison Consulting Group, Inc., as a consultant for 12 years. He firmly believed that change must take place in systems - and be connected to daily operations - in order to transform the way organizations work.
Arthur was perhaps best known for the way he graced the stage. Most notably, he appeared in the award-winning PBS documentary Flight to Freedom, hosted by Cicely Tyson, and narrated Harlem Renaissance: Images of a People, which was nominated for a National Black Journalist Award. His numerous credits include the film Cherry Crush and productions of A Raisin in the Sun, A Soldier's Story, and many other plays.
Arthur's kind heart and boundless exuberance were well known in his community. He played a key role in facilitating a school- and community-based collaborative that provided services for youth and families. A certified Cultural Competency Trainer, Arthur served on the boards of many organizations, including The Center for Youth Services, Partners for Arts Education, the Aesthetic Education Institute, Young Audiences of Rochester, and the local ACLU chapter.
Arthur will always be remembered for his warmth, his kindness, and his smile. "I am blessed!" he often said. So was everyone who had the privilege of knowing him.
Dr. Cheryl A. Lieberman
Dr. Cheryl A. Lieberman, 69, of Chelsea, MA, died Monday, December 7, 2015 in Whidden Memorial Hospital, Everett, MA. Born in Wilkes-Barre, she was the daughter of the late S. Bernard and Ilane Qunit Lieberman and was the owner of Cornerstone Consulting. She was a member of Temple Israel, Boston and served on the Board of the Jewish Big Brother/Big Sisters.
She was preceded in death, in addition to her parents, by sister, Bonnie Lieberman. Dr. Lieberman is survived by sons, Eric Lieberman, Fall River, MA; Christoper Lieberman and his wife, Becky, Marlboro, MA. Graveside Funeral service will be conducted Sunday, December 13, 2015, at 1:00 pm in Bnai Jacob Cemetery, Wilkes-Barre, with Rabbi Dovid Kaplan officiating.
Arrangements by Rosenberg Funeral Chapel, Inc. Wilkes-Barre. Contributions can be made to the Jewish Big Brother/Big Sisters of Boston, Temple Israel of Boston or The Animal Rescue League of Boston.