Dee C. Marshall, CEO of Diverse & Engaged, is an award-winning business owner, influencer, and thought leader on equity, diversity, and inclusion across industries and sectors. Dee’s unwavering commitment to fostering environments of genuine belonging and opportunity has solidified her as a beacon of inspiration for those striving towards a more inclusive and equitable future.

Each year, WBENC presents 14 women business owners with the prestigious Women’s Business Enterprise (WBE) Star Award, the nation’s premier recognition for excellence among certified women-owned businesses, honoring female owners for their leadership skills, business success, and ability to serve as an inspiration to others.

Get to know Dee C. Marshall from WBEC Metro NY, and get inspired by her dedication to her people and to the WBENC network.

Dee C. Marshall, Founder and CEO of Diverse & Engaged


Diverse & Engaged provides leadership training, staff development and management and organizational effectiveness support. They also produce programs like D&I Honors: Where Congress Meets Culture Inclusion & Belonging, a collaboration with Full Color Future to “unify and recognize diversity leaders, game-changers, and corporate leaders across industries and sectors, and community representatives who have moved the needle and made bold moves to advance marginalized and underrepresented people in workplaces and common spaces.”

“I’ve taken a hit and many hits but they didn’t penetrate. That is resiliency. Resiliency is also the ability to get up, show up, keep going and remember forward and up is the only way.”

In 2020, WBEC Metro NY was tasked by their corporate partners with a crucial mission: to create a program that would lend support to Women Owned businesses amid the George Floyd era and movement. Dee, along with her dedicated team, collaborated closely to bring the AMPLIFY program to fruition in 2021. Since its inception, the program has seen two successful cohorts, with a third set to commence in 2023. This program offers comprehensive business acumen training and establishes a nurturing environment for like-minded women entrepreneurs to connect, share insights, and seek assistance for both professional and personal challenges.

Dee and her team have channeled the gravity of this period in history to create a sanctuary for dialogue, discourse, and healing for business owners and Women of Color at large. Her presentations resonate with authenticity and candor yet are firmly centered on propelling progress and refusing to settle for the prevailing norms. Dee has forged vital partnerships with corporate entities and other organizations, ensuring the dissemination of valuable information and creating opportunities for these enterprising women to not only weather the storm but to thrive and expand their enterprises in these trying times.

Read on for even more inspiration from Dee!

Wisdom from WBE Star, Dee C. Marshall
When and how was your business started?

I started my company almost ten years ago providing leadership development to high-level, high-ranking, and high-profile professionals. Over the years Diverse & Engaged evolved to address the issues impacting women and people of color in the workplace. Today Diverse & Engaged provides leadership development and diversity consulting when a company has the challenge to attract, engage, and retain diverse cultures.

What is a challenge or opportunity your business faced because of the COVID-19 Pandemic, and how did you face it?

The biggest challenge during the pandemic was finding the business who needed our diversity, equity and inclusion services when businesses were downsizing their commitment to people and culture.

Provide an example of how innovation helped you overcome a challenge, pivot, or adapt to a crisis.

Innovation helped Diverse & Engaged solve a big problem where business were increasing efforts and honoring commitment to diversity and inclusion but unsure about how to ensure their suppliers were also committed. We created our DEIMC which is our proprietary tool that allows corporations to measure suppliers against a similar standard and now ESG reporting.

What have you learned about yourself as a leader from mentoring or coaching others?

I’ve learned I’m a better leader than a manager. I learned that the 12-year-old cheerleader lives and loves to see everyone win. I learned I am skillful coach using all of my experience to call the plays on how to win in life.

What do you view as benefits of being part of the WBENC network? How has your company grown and changed since its inception and since becoming certified?

The biggest benefit of being part of WBENC is the access to markets, the learning opportunities, and the network within the network that is supper supportive. My business has grown significantly securing top Fortune 500 corporations, securing WBENC and some of the RPOs as clients additionally we’ve won several awards, recognition and increased our visibiity throughout the supplier diversity ecosystem.

What guiding words would you like to share with a newly certified WBE who is looking to get involved in the WBENC community?

Show up live and in person to regional and national. Volunteer for your local steering committee. Read every newsletter so you don’t miss anything.

What areas of innovation do you foresee for women entrepreneurs over the next few years?

If you think about this from an ESG perspective, I see innovation in the “S” in the social space solving big problems that impact the health and well-being of people from all walks of life with business solutions. So any solution, service, or product that addresses safety, well-being, fair treatment, and equitable sharing is where I see innovation.

About InfoMart

Diverse & Engaged help businesses that lack adequate talent and skills, have a problem attracting and retaining diverse talent, diverse suppliers and diverse consumers.
Diverse & Engaged solve your problem by developing diversity programs and initiatives to engage, support or train diverse populations. Their core competency is training and development but are hired through (1) multicultural marketing (2) diversity & inclusion (3) supplier diversity (4) corporate social responsibility (5) consumer engagement (6) training/coaching as well as (7) rewards & retention.

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