Human Resources, Lakeshore, and Nonprofits

Chamber honors Champions of Diversity

June 30, 2019
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Al Vanderberg, left, and Priya Gurumurthy
Al Vanderberg, left, and Priya Gurumurthy. Courtesy Michigan West Coast Chamber of Commerce

A chamber in the region has recognized its Champions of Diversity.

The Michigan West Coast Chamber of Commerce this spring recognized Priya Gurumurthy as the Individual Champion of Diversity and Ottawa County as the Corporate Champion of Diversity.

Priya Gurumurthy

Priya Gurumurthy is IT manager for Grand Rapids-based Yanfeng Automotive Interiors. She joined the company in 2012 as a senior business analyst for the engineering IT team.

She is currently leading all the global business facing activities for the Yanfeng Automotive Interiors product launch and engineering IT team, working closely with the global engineering customers.

In 2016, Gurumurthy assumed leadership of the the Yanfeng's diversity team, which has implemented a number of initiatives, such as diversity and inclusion workshops for leadership development and a diversity scholarship.

As a member of the Ready for School board, Gurumurthy helped lead its diversity and inclusion activities. She serves on the board of Tulip Time, working to make the festival more inclusive, and the board of Herrick District Library.

Ottawa County

Ottawa County recently established the diversity and inclusion office, which is responsible for developing templates to discover and eliminate implicit bias, develop plans to promote diversity and develop training programs to be an internal consultant in diversity, equity and inclusion topics and issues.

Under the leadership of administrator Al Vanderberg, Ottawa County has implemented programs to train more than 650 employees on fair hiring practices.

In 2012, the county embarked on an organizational improvement strategy that focuses on customer service, creativity, communication and cultural intelligence.

Ottawa County partners closely with the cultural intelligence committee and has built relationships with many community organizations, including the migrant resource council.

Vanderberg has served in many city and county management roles throughout his career, including posts in Kent County, South Haven and Greenville, before assuming his current position with Ottawa County in 2003.

He is a member of the Michigan Department of Civil Rights Council for Government and Education on Equity and Inclusion.