Normella Walker | Cleveland State University Professional Development Center in Cleveland


Normella Walker


Normella is a graduate of the Diversity Management Program at Cleveland State University, has completed diversity course work at the Cornell University School of International Labor Relations and is a seasoned professional with 25 years of business experience. She has actively managed, facilitated and advised diverse groups for over 20 years, and specializes in business operations, organizational performance, leadership development, team building, collaborative conflict resolution, change management, and cross cultural relationship cultivation.

She has specific and comprehensive training in diversity competencies and coursework, not just generalized skills applied to diversity issues, and has counseled individuals’ at all organizational levels. She is a dynamic and authentic person who understands the obstacles, anxieties, apprehensions and frustrations that people often encounter as they try to navigate difference and change. She is able to provide clarity and a sense of safety and support as she engages individuals and groups in learning how to break down barriers, challenge perceptions, examine cognitive dissonance and disrupt entrenched patterns of thinking in order to fully reap the benefits of diversity and inclusion.

She began her professional career working for a small but progressive firm (Capitol American) located in downtown Cleveland, eventually moving her department to Chicago following the firm’s acquisition by Conseco Services. While in Chicago she managed a large group of international employees, and served as a member of their international business operations group.

She relocated back to Cleveland to join Cleveland Clinic’s management team where she initially focused on administrative operations and then transitioned into the Office of Diversity as Manager of Diversity Programs and Education. During her tenure there she facilitated 21 diversity business councils, served as the liaison for several employee affinity groups, coached a wide range of employees from professional and frontline staff to police officers and emergency department personnel, created an array of educational resources and supported a number of departments with strategic planning around cultural competency initiatives across the enterprise.

Normella is a skilled presenter, communicator, and trainer with success targeting large and small groups, and an expert in the identification, analysis, and resolution of diverse operational as well as behavioral issues. She currently serves as an independent coach and consultant delivering individually tailored programs to a variety of business entities, government agencies, community groups, students, schools, and other nonprofit organizations. Her operational expertise, coupled with her strategic managerial sensibilities provide her with insight into how to leverage and pragmatically integrate the principles associated with diversity and inclusion.