With an increasing number of organizations reaping the benefits derived from different perspectives, cultural backgrounds, and personal experiences represented by their workforces, many companies are stepping up efforts to seek out more diverse leaders to enhance their Boards of Directors.

With that objective in mind, Slone Partners is supporting an initiative by our client Johnson & Johnson Innovation (JJI) to recruit highly qualified diverse business leaders for its visionary Board Fellows, a select community of diverse potential future Board members.

Slone Partners’ premier search teams leverage their extensive networks and long-standing relationships with accomplished executives and leading companies in the life sciences, healthcare, and beyond to help JJI identify future Fellowship candidates.

“We are thrilled to contribute to this very exciting and worthy project,” said Leslie Loveless, Chief Executive Officer at Slone Partners. “Through this work, we are demonstrating our commitment to enhance diverse Board leadership in the life sciences and healthcare industries and beyond, and to break down the systemic barriers that have long stood in the way of these efforts.”

With candidate recruitment support from Slone Partners, JJI has already built two Classes of North American Board Fellows, with the construction of a third Class now underway. The Board Fellows participate in educational programs, executive coaching, media coaching, personal brand building, expert-led diversity round tables, and networking opportunities with Johnson & Johnson leadership teams and JJI portfolio companies in the early-stage innovation ecosystem.

In its role, Slone Partners sources, screens, interviews, and presents candidates and works with JJI program leaders to select and onboard the final group of Fellows who will populate each Class. Class 1 candidates were selected in February 2022, followed by Class 2 candidates in February 2023. Class 3 candidates are expected to be selected in 2024.

The Board Fellows program is approximately one year. Once the Fellows are selected, they begin participating in the various readiness activities that are intended to hone their skills and capacities for Board service.

“It is important to us to do all we can to develop more and better pathways for diverse leaders to rise to the top of their organizations where they can have maximum impact,” said Candace Nortey, Managing Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) at Slone Partners. “By helping identify candidates for the JJI program, we can elevate the prospects of many women, people of color, and other underrepresented candidates who previously may not have been considered for Board positions. And, in the process, we can make our industries more fair, equitable, and inclusive in the years to come.”