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A Diversity Message from Neil Meltzer, President and CEO, and Dr. Sybil Pentsil, Chief Diversity Officer - June 2023


June is an eventful month for the Office of J.E.D.I. (Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion) as well as team members and patients all across the LifeBridge Health system. Major observances such as Pride and Juneteenth are occasions both for celebration and education, and it is our hope that this message, like all our monthly messages, will inspire you to learn about, support and share in the joy of the many cultures and communities that make our network so special.

Pride Month
June is Pride Month, dedicated to the LGBTQIA+ community. Pride Month finds its origins in the Stonewall Riots of 1969, during which members of the LGBTQIA+ community rose up in protest against police raids at the Stonewall Inn, a New York City gay bar. Pride Month is a time for members of the LGBTQIA+ community to celebrate themselves and each other, relishing the joy and fulfillment that comes with living in truth. Pride is celebrated with vibrant parades throughout cities across the United States and the world. Despite its celebratory spirit, Pride Month also serves as an opportunity to reflect on the oppression still faced by LGBTQIA+ individuals
543 bills have been proposed across the nation targeting transgender people in 2023 alone. This Pride Month, we wish a safe and joyous Pride Month to all celebrating and re-affirm our commitment to improving health equity for the LGBTQIA+ community. 

In honor of Pride month, cultural competency trainings are being offered on June 8, 12, 20 and 22 to help team members learn to better support the LGBTQIA+ community. Sign up here! 

·       LifeBridge Health will once again participate in Baltimore Pride, this year on June 24, and Westminster Pride on July 8. All LGBTQIA+ and allied team members are invited to participate. If interested, please email

Caribbean American Heritage Month
Caribbean American Heritage Month honors the rich history of Caribbean people in the United States. Caribbean Americans are immigrants or the ancestors of immigrants from Caribbean nations such as Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Haiti. The influence of Caribbean people on American life is incalculably vast, due in part to the cultural contributions of seminal figures such as W.E.B. DuBois, Sidney Poitier, Shirley Chisholm and Kwame Ture, and many others. We offer in gratitude and celebration our warmest regards to all Caribbean American patients and team members at LifeBridge Health.

American Indian Citizenship Day
On June 2, 1924, the Indigenous people of the United States were granted full U.S. citizenship with the passing of the Indian Citizenship Act. Indigenous people were not given the right to vote, however, until 1958 and remain subject to a host of social and political inequities here on their own ancestral land. June 2 serves as an opportunity to honor the proud history and culture of native people while acknowledging the injustices to which they have been subjected.

Observed on June 19, Juneteenth commemorates
the emancipation of enslaved African people in the United States. On June 19, 1865, 250,000 slaves in Galveston, Texas were informed of their freedom, over two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth became a federal holiday in 2021, amidst a fever pitch of public consciousness surrounding racism against African American people. Juneteenth is an occasion for both celebrating freedom and reflecting on the racial inequities and discrimination still perpetrated against Black people in the United States. Juneteenth festivities include gatherings with family and friends, parades, musical performances and more. We wish all African American team members and employees a happy and fulfilling Juneteenth and encourage all allies to use the holiday as an opportunity for learning.

Helen Keller Day
Helen Keller Day, observed on June 27, commemorates the life and achievements of its namesake. Born in 1880, Keller lost both her hearing and sight due to illness as a child. Keller would eventually learn how to both read and write, becoming in adulthood a prolific author and disability rights activist. She was the first deafblind person in American history to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. In addition to celebrating Keller’s legacy, Helen Keller Day draws attention to advocacy efforts for blind and deaf people.

Conversations About Racism and Discrimination (CARD)

Please join the Office of Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (JEDI) & JEDI Council for Conversations about Racism and Discrimination, a new series to promote awareness and aid discussion of various JEDI topics. The topic for the next virtual session will be “Housing and Healthy Living – What's Law Got To Do With It?” Panelists will include law professor and litigator Yvette Pappoe Dream BIG Foundation partner Stephanie Amponsah. Click here on Tuesday June 27, 2023 from 12 noon to 1:30 p.m. to join the session


REFLECT: Consider the difficult journey enslaved African people endured to gain their independence this Juneteenth and also consider the challenges African Americans face today.

RECOGNIZE: Check-in with your LGBTQIA+ colleagues, family and friends and show your support.

RESPOND: Consider volunteering and supporting Juneteenth and Pride celebrations.

J.E.D.I. Champion Nominations
The Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (J.E.D.I.) Champion award is given to individuals at LBH who embrace differences between team members, promote justice, equity, diversity and inclusion and go above and beyond to create a culture of belonging at LifeBridge Health. J.E.D.I. Champions are  team members who:

  •        Participate in J.E.D.I. education.
  •        Develop/engage in opportunities for J.E.D.I. engagement across the institution.
  •        Promote a sense of belonging for all team members.
  •        Demonstrate commitment to SPIRIT values.
  •        Support institutional efforts to be just, equitable, diverse and inclusive.

To nominate a team member for the J.E.D.I. Champion Award please send an email to with the following information: 

  • Your name and email address
  • Name, email address and title of the person you would like to nominate
  • A short paragraph outlining how the nominee fits the criteria listed