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How Diversity Shapes Culture and Influences Buying-Power

August 28, 2019 @ 11:30 am - 1:30 pm

How Diversity Shapes Culture
and Influences Buying-Power

Wednesday, Aug. 28, 2019
Ford Showroom at Taco Bell Headquarters, Irvine
11:30-1:30 p.m.

Diversity and inclusion has taken center stage in society, politics, Hollywood, business and even our family conversations.

This topic is not new, however, the increase in efforts around Diversity & Inclusion are shaping culture. Diversity not only includes differences in race, ethnicity, gender, to name a few, but it also includes age.

Generational differences are expanding as certain age groups get older. According to a recent study by Pew Research Center, “These divisions are now as wide as they have been in decades.” Understanding generational preferences, values, habits, motivations is part of the diversity conversation. The generational differences have an impact on people’s decisions and ultimately influencing buying power.

As PR practitioners we need to understand how diversity impacts what we do and how we do it. If diversity is shaping culture, how do we as professionals get ahead of the change and lead with campaigns that will resonate with the changing demographics?

Please join us as we hear from PR practitioners doing strategic work that is influencing the advancement of diversity and inclusion for their organization, including someone from Mattel on how they have shifted their efforts to lead in diversity and inclusion for their employees and their customers. Register today.

Jessica Kimball is an HR Strategy leader who currently leads Engagement, Diversity and Inclusion at Mattel, Inc.  She and her team are evolving Mattel’s approach to employee engagement and doing so during a time of both business and cultural transformation. To do so, Mattel is activating engagement at three levels of what Jessica calls the “Employee Engagement Funnel”: committing to tackle company-wide activations for large scale change, boosting people manager capability to increase engagement for individual teams, and empowering employees to get involved and own their own engagement.  Jessica and her team are using an agile, data-driven approach to measuring employee sentiment while maintaining a fun, human connection in their employee engagement activations.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Jessica has seen firsthand how diverse perspectives can help shape a vibrant community. Jessica and her team are also in the process of reimaging what Diversity and Inclusion looks like at Mattel, focusing on the powerful impact D&I can have on Mattel employees as well as children throughout the world via Mattel’s wide-reaching products.

Jessica holds a BA in psychology from Yale University and an MBA from UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Sandra A. Bernardo, APR
is a 20-year communications professional who has been nationally recognized for her accomplishments in multicultural marketing. As an emerging leader in the field in the early 2000’s, she was featured in PR WEEK Magazine and served as president of the Hispanic Public Relations Association. Among her honors, Sandra was selected as “Woman of the Year in Communications” by the League of United Latin American Citizens and is a graduate of the Hispanas Organized for Political Equality Leadership Institute.

Sandra has led national multicultural campaigns for major brands and organizations such as Lactaid Milk, Splenda, Food & Drug Administration, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Marshalls, Transitions Optical, American Cancer Society and Johnson & Johnson.

She currently works for Experian in corporate communications, where she leads multicultural outreach efforts promoting the company’s brand and services to consumers and serves as a Spanish-language spokesperson. Sandra also has been a part of the company’s movement to elevate its diversity and inclusion efforts internally as a leader for the Hispanic employee resource group.

Sandra is currently pursuing her MBA at Brandman University and has a Bachelor of Arts degree from UCLA.

Laarni Rosca Dacanay is an award-winning corporate publicist with expertise in entertainment and media. Currently, she serves as PR & Communications Consultant for Comcast NBCUniversal – where she previously held the role of External Communications Manager. Prior to Comcast’s acquisition of NBCUniversal, Laarni spent nine years at NBCUniversal, in various divisions as a corporate communicator. She is a founding member of NBCUniversal’s Asian Pacific American employee resource group.

As part of the original team that launched diversity at NBCUniversal, Laarni helped the company to be more inclusive via employee engagement, community relations and industry support. By leveraging multicultural outreach, she increased employee engagement and early awareness of films with the company’s ERGs via movie screenings at Focus Features. At NBC, she was the publicist for NBC’s Talent Diversity Initiative.

She is serving her 11th year with the PRSA National Diversity & Inclusion Committee. As a past co-chair and member of OC/PRSA’s Diversity Committee, she earned PRSA’s “National Award for Diversity” six years consecutively. In June 2011, she received the OC/PRSA “Distinguished Service Award,” the highest honor bestowed to an individual by the chapter – which also marked her as the first Asian-American to receive the honor.

Laarni holds a B.A. in Communications (emphasis in Public Relations) from California State University, Fullerton and she completed UCLA’s Entertainment Public Relations professional certification program, which is endorsed by the Publicists Guild of America.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019
11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Ford Showroom at Taco Bell Headquarters
1 Glen Bell Way, Irvine, CA 92618

All parking is complimentary in the parking structure adjacent to the building.

EARLY-BIRD TICKETS with Reservations and Payment through August 26:
Non-Member: $40
OCPRSA Member: $30
PRSSA: $20
Student: $23

After Aug. 26, we charge an additional $5 per ticket, and no refunds are available.

Note the OCPRSA member rate is offered only to chapter members. Non-member guests of members should pay the non-member rate. Thank you!

We’re no longer accepting advance reservations but will welcome walk-ins at the door.

Email with questions.


August 28, 2019
11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Event Category:


Taco Bell Corporate Headquarters
1 Glen Bell Way
Irvine, CA 92618 United States
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