Join Us for Innovation Through DEI Principles and Disability Inclusion at The Chicago Lighthouse

Chris Stoeberl, Media Coordinator


Title:     “Innovation Through DEI Principles and Disability Inclusion” 
(in person event at The Chicago Lighthouse – 1850 W Roosevelt Rd, Chicago 60608)

Date:     Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Time:     5:00 – 7:30 PM CST 

Location: 1850 W Roosevelt Rd., Chicago 60608
*Please note that our front entrance is closed for construction.  Enter building at 1143 South Wolcott. (Corner of W Roosevelt & S Wolcott)

Parking: ICRE Roosevelt Parking Lot (Corner of Wolcott and Grenshaw – across the street from entrance)

Description: It’s no secret that building a more diverse and equitable workforce leads to certain competitive advantages, yet many businesses are still discovering how prioritizing inclusion can positively impact culture, productivity, and dependability. Keeping DEI principles in the forefront within the workplace has shown to enhance workplace safety, loyalty, and turnover. More importantly, creating a diverse, equitable, and inclusive culture can help promote general support and improve employee satisfaction.

Join the Chicago Lighthouse’s panel of inclusion experts as they detail the benefits of prioritizing DEI principles, including disability inclusion strategies, and ways that your business can make progress today.

Audience: Chicagoland Chamber members, Chicago Lighthouse supporters, open to the public  
Registration: Link for registration 

-    Carmen Vergara, Chief Operating Officer, Esperanza Health Centers 
-    Jeffery Beckham, Jr., Chief Executive Officer, Chicago Scholars


5:00 pm – 5:30 pm:     Guest arrived at the venue, checking-in and registration for the raffle    
5:30 pm – 5:40 pm: Introduction to The Chicago Lighthouse’s programs and services 
 (Janet Szlyk, Ph.D. – President & CEO)

5:40 pm – 6:00 pm:  Carmen Vergara - Chief Operating Officer, Esperanza Health Center 
                                  Talk and Q&A session

6:00 pm – 6:20 pm:  Jeffery Beckham Jr. - Chief Executive Officer, Chicago Scholars
                                  Talk and Q&A session

6:20 pm – 6:35 pm:    Kathy Stoeberl- Executive Vice President/Chief Social Business Enterprises
            Call Centers and Social Business Enterprise overview 

6:35 pm – 6:40 pm:   Raffle prize draws and announcement 

6:40 pm - 7:30 pm:     Socialize, Networking, Closing
Speaker Biography:

Picture of Carmen Vergara

Carmen Vergara
Chief Operating Officer | Esperanza Health Centers

Carmen Vergara is currently Esperanza Health Centers Chief Operating Officer where she is responsible for numerous departments, including the nationally recognized quality program.  Carmen began her career in healthcare as a medical assistant and later earned a Bachelor’s in Nursing and a Master’s in Public Health from the University of Illinois at Chicago.  She grew up in Chicago's Little Village neighborhood, the daughter of diligent and hard-working parents who encouraged her to aim high and give back to her community.  She has spent her entire career working for underserved communities and is a staunch advocate for economic and social justice. Recognizing the importance of Latinx representation within the healthcare profession and leadership landscape, Carmen ensures time to coach and mentor young professionals, particularly Latinas.  She is dedicated to building and fostering a work environment that is employee-centric and is a model for inclusivity and diversity.  She is currently a board member for the Chicago Department of Public Health as well as Firebird Community Arts and Open Center for the Arts.




Picture of Jeffery Beckham
Jeffery Beckham Jr. 
Chief Executive Officer | Chicago Scholars

Jeffery Beckham Jr. is Chief Executive Officer at Chicago Scholar and an award-winning acrylic painter. In his role as CEO, Jeffery is responsible for leading the organization that serves more than 5,000 first-generation and low-income students to reach their dreams to pursue a college education. 

Jeffery is a community leader, artist, and serial entrepreneur who uses his national platform to fight for equity in education for urban communities. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for The 100 Black Men of Chicago, The Congo Square Theater, the Better Boys Foundation. He is also a sought-after speaker with appearances at McKinsey & Co., Facebook, Groupon, among others and has been featured as an expert source on Fox-32, ABC, CBS, WBEZ’s Chicago Tonight, WCIU’s The Jam and Chicago.Now, among others.

Jeffery’s thoughtful and dedicated leadership has received numerous awards. WVON and Ariel Investments named Jeffery one of Chicago’s Top 40 Game Changers Under 40 years old in 2015, he was a finalist for the Chicago Inno 50 on Fire Award in 2016, and The RAY Awards named him their 2018-2019 Man of the Year, in 2021 he was named a Chicago Defender Man of Excellence, and in 2021 he was Awarded the Callahan Celebration of Giving Service award for his work in the community. In 2022 he was selected as a Black Creativity Innovator by the Museum of Science and Industry.

Chamber Points of Contact:
-    Emily Cooper, VP of Programs,, 847-347-5079 
-    Demi Palecek, Events Manager,, 312-978-8733 

Chicago Lighthouse Points of Contact:
-    Yesenia Guevara, Vice President | Strategic Sales Development,, Tel. 312-447-3259

-    Kathy Stoeberl, Executive Vice President/Chief Social Business Enterprises,,  Tel. 312-997-3665