Date: Wednesday June 9, 2021
Time: 11am-12pm EST / 5-6pm CET
Location: Online event

Join the NAF-Biz on June 9 from 11 AM – 12 noon EST (17 -18 hours CET) on Zoom as we compare Dutch and American DEI definitions, explore the differences in policies and communication strategies, and discover how to harness the potential of an inclusive workplace across the US and the Netherlands.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) are critical elements for companies that want to attract and retain top talent, expand globally and be a leader in their industry.

Yet how can a company with presence in more than one country create global DEI policies and communication strategies, when DEI is defined and experienced differently around the world?

While wearing blackface has been unacceptable in the US since the civil rights movement of the 1960s, it was an acceptable part of Dutch culture until recently. On the other hand, same sex marriage was legalized in the Netherlands in 2001, 14 years before it was legalized in 2015 across the USA.

History and legislation have a huge impact on how diversity is experienced, managed and communicated, making the experience of being Black, gay or part of any minority a unique experience in every country and making DEI policies across global companies a unique challenge.


Panel members

Ivo Futselaar – is personally and professionally incredibly passionate about Diversity & Inclusion. He has held various leadership positions throughout his career in corporate LGBTQ+ Employee Networks in Financial Services both in The Netherlands and US. In addition, in his role as a Sr. Campus Recruitment Manager at various firms he worked with many LGBTQ+ (students) organizations to attract top talent from the community.

Rodney Lam sees his entrepreneurship as a way of making a social difference. Always spreading a message of inclusivity. He has shown that as CEO and co-owner of streetwear brand Daily Paper, a company can be run by young people, with different ethnicities and a management team consisting of 80% women.
After blazing a trail of equal opportunity within the fashion industry, he implements this same vision within the realm of film. As screenwriter, producer and actor Lam uses his storytelling to reflect the full spectrum of modern day society.

Paula Robinson is the Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion – North America for Rabobank, a financial institution focused on the food and agriculture industry based in the Netherlands. Ms. Robinson leads the organization’s diversity continuum, servicing over 1,500 employees on maximizing the fullest potential of an inclusive workplace, serving as a thought partner to embed diversity, equity and inclusion into the business infrastructure, the core of organizational culture, and the impact on the clients and communities in which Rabobank serves.

Jennifer Tosch is a cultural historian and the founder of Black Heritage Tours in Amsterdam, New York State and Brussels. The tours make the cities’ ‘hidden’ histories visible as you explore their early Black presence and colonial history. She is the co-author of 3 guide books on Dutch colonial history: Amsterdam (2014), New York (2017) and The Netherlands (2019). Jennifer is the co-founder of Sites of Memory Foundation (2019) and a member of the Mapping Slavery Project Netherlands (2014). She was born in Brooklyn, New York to Surinamese parents.



Annette van der Feltz of Expatriate Assistance is surrounded by intercultural communication; born and raised in the Netherlands, Annette lives just outside New York with her Swedish husband and their equal parts American, Dutch, Swedish children, while working with expats from all over the world.  This makes for almost daily discussions about cultural diversity. After a progressive career in competence development, taking her to 3 different countries, Annette decided to fully focus on her passion on how different countries perceive the world around them. Annette specializes in coaching Dutch and American expats and companies to leverage cultural differences to thrive in their new host country.

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