Southern Bancorp recently made a new addition to its leadership team as LaTricia Hill-Chandler has been named the new Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Officer, according an official press release from the Arkadelphia-based CDFI.
“We are thrilled to welcome LaTricia to our leadership team,” said Darrin Williams, CEO of Southern Bancorp. “When searching for a candidate to fill this position, we knew we needed someone with both a wealth of experience in the field along with values that align with our mission-focused work. LaTricia’s expertise, principles and guidance will be invaluable as we prepare for growth that is reflective of our inclusive founding principles, which have from the beginning included a strong focus on increasing economic mobility in minority communities.”
According to Southern Bancorp, Hill-Chandler has a wealth of the experience from her three-decade career in the DEI field, including serving as Arvest Bank’s first DEI officer and overseeing efforts all across four states in which the bank is present, and helping to build and implement a worldwide inclusive leadership initiative while working in Walmart’s Global Culture Diversity and Inclusion Office.
“I am excited to be leading DEI efforts for Southern Bancorp and its entities,” said Hill-Chandler in an official statement. “Their commitment to advancing financial interests within underserved communities aligns well with the overall intent of DEI. And with this focus, we hope to engage in more representation (D), fairness (E) and belonging (I) to our employees, suppliers, customers and communities. Our responsibility is to promote DEI wherein everyone feels welcomed, supported, and respected as we continue to build wealth. By nurturing this type of inclusive environment, all of us will be successful.”
A Magnolia, Arkansas native and first-generation college graduate, Hill-Chandler earned her bachelor’s in business administration from LeMoyne-Owen College – an HBCU in Memphis – and her master’s degree in management from Indiana Wesleyan University. She is also a credentialed Certified Diversity Executive and a graduate of the Stanley K. Lacy Executive Leadership Series.
Outside of her business career, Hill-Chandler is on the board of directors for several organizations meant to foster diversity, equity and inclusion: TASC (Teen Action Support Center); the Walton College of Business, Dr. Barbara Lofton Office of Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board, University of Arkansas; The Conference Board; Diversity and Inclusion Executive Council US, New York; Bentonville Together Advisory Board; and A Little Bit of Hope.