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Award to be presented at the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance Virtual Conference on November 3

Washington, DC (October 26, 2021) – The Diversity and Flexibility Alliance will present Judge Tonya Parker of Dallas County Texas with its 2021 Luminary Award. This award recognizes a global thought leader who is consistently and uniquely devoted to the advancement of diversity and whose vision is leaving a lasting legacy of inclusivity for future leaders. The Alliance will present the award to Judge Parker on Wednesday, November 3, during its virtual annual conference Reflect. Reimagine. Recalibrate. Paving the Way to Inclusive Flexibility. Registration is open to the public and is available here.

Dedicated public servant, recognized thought leader and former award-winning law firm partner, the Honorable Tonya Parker has held the position of Judge of the 116th Judicial District Court in Dallas County Texas since 2011.  Throughout her distinguished career, she has consistently been recognized by local, state and national organizations for her exceptional legal skills as well as her commitment to diversity and inclusion.  She has been a tireless advocate for women and members of the LGBTQ community, breaking barriers and committing countless hours to fighting bias and discrimination in the judicial system and beyond.

Among many other honors, in 2021 Judge Parker received the Women’s Commercial and Business Advocate Committee of the American Bar Association Business Law Section’s award for service and commitment to women in the profession, as well as the Dallas Bar Association’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Justice Award in recognition of the barriers she has broken in the legal community.  In 2019, the State Bar of Texas African American Lawyers’ Section awarded her its Distinguished Jurist Award in acknowledgment of the leadership role she played in spearheading the Implicit Bias Project in the Dallas Civil District Courts.  In 2018, the Dallas NAACP awarded her the President’s Award for Legal Excellence and in 2017 she received the Stonewall Award from the American Bar Association’s Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Commission.

A 2021 graduate of Stagen’s Social Change Leadership Program, she has devoted countless hours to volunteering at civic organizations and has focused much of her efforts on inspiring women to run for public office.  Over the last decade she has been a regular volunteer with IGNITE, a non-partisan organization aimed at building political ambition in and training young women to run for public office.  She has also been tackling the impact of implicit bias in the judicial system by spearheading the Implicit Bias Project and is focused on examining oppression and privilege, particularly how they play out in the daily lives of individuals and society as a whole. Judge Parker has become well known for her moving keynote speeches and TED Talks that impart brilliant and impassioned messages.

“With her trailblazing actions and powerful words, Judge Parker truly embodies the essence of our Luminary Award,” said Manar Morales, President & CEO of the Diversity & Flexibility Alliance. “Not only is she a devoted mentor and champion for women and members of the LGBTQ community in the legal profession, but her wisdom and guidance will clearly have a lasting impact on the leaders of today and tomorrow,” she added.

“Promoting diversity AND flexibility is how we will achieve equity in the workplace for historically marginalized groups and work/life balance for everyone,” said Judge Parker.  “DFA has long understood and advocated for both which is why I am so honored to receive the Luminary Award from the organization.  It is humbling to be recognized as a thought leader who shines a light on the issues of our day through my talks and presentations on labels, oppression, privilege, and allyship,” she added.

The Diversity and Flexibility Alliance is a think tank that collaborates with organizations to develop non-stigmatized flexible work policies that promote inclusive work cultures and help to advance more women into leadership positions. The Alliance provides practical research-based solutions, training workshops, and strategic advisory services that increase organizational effectiveness through diversity and flexibility.

 

Registration for the conference is available here.

Contact: Manar Morales

manar@dfalliance.com

202-957-9650

We are thrilled to have an impressive line-up of prominent leaders, influencers and change-makers speaking at our 2021 Virtual Annual Conference on November 3.  We will be introducing these dynamic and engaging speakers here on our blog. We asked our speakers to answer a few questions about themselves and hope you find the answers as fascinating as we do!

This week’s “Getting To Know Our Conference Speakers” post highlights an amazing Judge from Dallas County Texas, the Honorable Tonya Parker.  We really appreciate Judge Parker taking time out of her busy schedule to share some intriguing thoughts about her approach to her career and life.  Read on to learn more about this inspirational thought leader’s advice, personal mantra and vision for the future. 

 

Diversity & Flexibility Alliance: What advice do you have for future leaders?  

Judge Tonya Parker: Lead with empathy and by example. Be a trauma-informed leader who appreciates the impact and toll of world events, social issues, isms, and phobias on your team and yourself.

 

DFA: What gives you hope for the future?  

JTP: That people finally seem to understand the importance of their vote and voice in our Democracy, and fewer people are taking either for granted.

 

DFA: What have you learned in the last year that has changed your perspective? 

JTP: Living for months in fear of acquiring or transmitting a potentially deadly or debilitating virus to the people I love the most brought into focus that faith, family, and good health reign supreme.  While I try each day to be a great judge and a great mom, when circumstances outside of my control (like the pandemic) force me to choose between being a great judge and a great mom, I am resolved to be a good judge and a great mom.

 

DFA: Have there been silver linings to the  pandemic?

JTP: The periods of isolation afforded deep reflection that helped me prioritize my faith, health, and family.  I will never go back to the way it was before the pandemic where I worked to the point of exhaustion and then gave God, myself, and my family what was left of me. I no longer subscribe to a belief system that equates sacrifice to devotion or hard-work.

 

DFA: What’s your vision for the workplace of the future?

JTP: I think “flexibility” will be the focal point.  We all appreciate the need for in-person work environments but also know now what is possible with remote work options.  The companies who will be the most competitive in the marketplace will be the ones that offer flexibility and show empathy for their employees life/health circumstances.  Employees will show unrivaled loyalty to companies who don’t make them choose between being a great employee and a great person, parent, spouse, dog-mom, etc.

 

DFA: What activities, movies or TV shows got you through the lock down?

JTP: My niece got me hooked on All-American.  I am a sucker for any sports-themed show or movie.

 

DFA: What’s your personal mantra?

JTP: Pursue justice and embody truth.

 

Don’t miss Judge Parker and our other 2021 Speakers on

Wednesday, November 3.

Register now!

We are so excited to have an amazing line-up of prominent leaders and trailblazers speaking at our 2019 Annual Conference Inspire. Innovate. Ignite! on Thursday, November 7 in Washington, DC.  We will be introducing these dynamic and engaging speakers during the next couple of months here on our blog. We asked our speakers to answer a few questions about themselves, their approach to their career, and their lives.

This week’s “Getting To Know Our Conference Speakers” post highlights The Honorable Tonya Parker, a trailblazing Judge from the 116th District Court in Dallas County. Judge Parker’s incredibly insightful presentation about Labels is part of our brand new “Meet The Influencers” program at the conference. You don’t want to miss it!

 

Diversity & Flexibility Alliance: What was the most meaningful piece of leadership advice you have received?

Judge Tonya Parker: Leadership is about responsibility, not power.  Power is only about ego.

DFA: Who has had the most influence on your career?

JTP: Ron White, the managing partner of White & Wiggins, LLP n/k/a White, Wiggins, & Barnes, LLP.  Ron taught me that hard work can atone for what one lacks in skill and even intellect. 

DFA: How do you recharge? 

JTP: Exercise and creative writing.

DFA: Where and when are you most content?

JTP: Saturday mornings eating cereal with my son.

DFA: What do you know now that you wish you knew then?

JTP: While it is true that no one is lesser than I am; it is also true that no one is greater.

DFA: How do you pay it forward?

JTP: By using the influence I have within my family/friend circle to advance righteous causes, noble ideas, and people who are kind and hard-working.   

DFA: What can we be doing to create more inclusive organizations?

JTP: Commit ourselves to taking an act each day that reflects the values of being anti-racist, anti-sexist, and anti-phobic.  

DFA: What book is on your nightstand?

JTP: “I Am Not Here To Give a Speech” by Gabriel García Márquez

 

Don’t miss hearing insights from Judge Parker and our other inspirational Influencers! 

Register for our conference TODAY. 

Early bird registration will continue until September 13.