Friday, October 19, 2012

Executive Leadership Council Presents 2012 Annual Recognition Gala “Blue Carpet & Cocktail Reception”

Actors Boris Kodjoe and Gabrielle Union, hosts for the 2012 Executive Leadership Gala with gala Achievement Award honoree Christopher J. Williams, Chairman & CEO, The Williams Capital Group, L.P.

With Washington, DC’s historic monuments and the Potomac River as backdrops, The Executive Leadership Council (ELC) hosted its’ annual Recognition Gala on Thursday, October 18th at the Gaylord National Hotel in National Harbor, MD.

African American corporate executives joined leaders from the non-profit and philanthropy sectors, politics, finance and media, among others as they mingled during the pre-gala cocktail reception. Many attendees walked the “Blue Carpet,” hosted by Actor Boris Kodjoe, including Laysha Ward, Board Chair, The Executive Leadership Council Foundation and President of Community Relations, Target; Bernard J. Tyson, ELC Board Chair and President and Chief Operating Officer, Kaiser Permanente; Gabrielle Union, Actress and Emcee of the evening’s event; and gala honorees Christopher J. Williams; Williams Capital Group L.P. and Edward Lewis, Founder, Essence Communications, Inc. and Senior Advisor, Solera Capital.

The Executive Leadership Council, comprised of current and former Fortune 500 African-American CEOs and other business executives, leads the call for diversity and inclusion by strategically supporting its membership who work at the highest echelons of corporate America, as well as building a pipeline of future leaders through its various development programs.

Mayor Kevin Johnson of Sacramento, CA and Stacey D. Stewart, President of United Way USA

Johnnetta Cole (right), director of the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art with guests.

Debra L. Lee (right), Chairman and CEO of BET Networks with guest.

Laysha Ward(center), Board Chair, The Executive Leadership Council Foundation and President of Community Relations, Target, and Julia Brown (right), chief procurement officer and senior vice president for global procurement, Kraft Foods.


For more information on ELC and its’ initiatives to increase the presence of African Americans in corporate leadership positions, visit its website at   For more photos from the event, visit

Photo credit: Stacey Trammel/Buzzology

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