2020 Keynote Speakers
Michael DeVaul is a 31-year veteran of the YMCA. Prior to joining the YMCA of Greater Charlotte in 1999, Michael served the McGaw YMCA in Evanston, Illinois for 15 years. As Chief Social Responsibility Officer, he provides oversight of the Y’s outreach programming and volunteerism as well as its diversity, inclusion and global initiatives. He also has oversight for the area of public policy, strategic alliances including partnerships, community engagement initiatives with corporations, government agencies and other nonprofits. Michael was recognized by The White House in 2014 as a Champion of Change in community building and diversity work and continues to serve on numerous community boards. Michael holds a degree from Columbia College and is a lifetime member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. He is married to Laura and has two sons, Cole and Beau.
Candace has extensive first-hand experience with courage from leading marketing teammates at global brands to stand up for an idea amid opposition, to give and receive feedback in support of growth, and to unapologetically be themselves — especially when being themselves was unpopular. In addition, she’s come to understand courage personally, through challenging racial assumptions and expectations then redefining herself for her. As a speaker, she combines personal storytelling with research-driven takeaways to help young people understand their fears and conjure their courage in school, work, and play. She is a former speaker for Monster’s Making It Count Program and has spoken to over 10,000 youth and caring adults across the country.
Niambi is an Author, Inspirational Speaker, Cultural Agility Strategist, Spiritual Activist and has spent the past 30 years working as a Transformation Advocate. She is the Principal and Lead Consultant for Cross-Cultural Agility, LLC where she trains, coaches and consults individuals and corporations on issues supporting cultural intelligence and new pathways to inclusion. Niambi's passion is helping others to transform their mindsets and personal stuck points so that they can deepen their connections to all of humanity. She has been featured in Essence and Ebony Magazines, MSN.com and Oprah's Angel Network for her work with teen girls. She is a faculty member of Expert Online Training, is a member of the National Diversity Council and has served as a Professional Advisor to graduate students at DePaul University's School for New Learning. She is also a Program Faculty member of Art of Living Retreat Center in Boone, NC.