Champion for Community
Danyelle Granger, Evansville Region
Serving with a passion for racial and social justice
Old National Bank Foundation Program Officer Danyelle Granger believes it’s important to volunteer in areas you’re passionate about. That’s why she focuses most of her community involvement on racial and social justice and diversity and inclusion initiatives.
“When you have a passion about something, it allows you to be a more effective voice for change and advocacy on issues important to you,” says Danyelle. “I have a deep interest in activities that assist under-represented and/or marginalized groups. I am passionate about developing programs that address education achievement gaps for minority and low-income children, as well as the advancement and empowerment of minorities and women.”
For the past five years, Danyelle has served on the board of directors of the YWCA of Evansville. She is 1st Vice President of the board, and she chairs the Hallmark Committee, which carries out the mission of the YWCA, eliminating racism and empowering women. She also serves as a mayoral appointee to the Evansville Chapter of the Indiana Commission on the Social Status of African American Males. The Commission is a statewide initiative that focuses on health, education, employment and social factors affecting black males.
In addition, Danyelle serves on the Evansville-Area Human Resources Association Board of Directors and chairs its Diversity Committee. In this position, she leads the promotion of diversity education and programs in the workplace among human resources professionals. In 2011, she chaired the 11th annual diversity conference, and she is planning the 2012 event.
She is also a co-founder of the Multicultural Professionals Network, a group dedicated to the professional development of a new generation of transformative leaders that reflect the diversity of the community. She says this initiative is one she is especially excited about, because it has the potential to reach a huge demographic of talented professionals in the Tri-State and provide opportunities for them to gain recognition and visibility in the community. She explains, “We have participation from a myriad of people representing a multitude of races, ethnicities and ages, which is what makes it so powerful!”
During the past two years, Danyelle has also served on the planning committee for the Sowing Seeds of Empowerment Women of Color Conference, the only conference in Evansville focused on the needs of women of color. She is a board member of SOUL Empowerment, a community health organization with the mission of addressing health disparities among inner city residents. Her volunteer efforts have also included working with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Evansville to help recruit black males as mentors, as the organization has cited this as a critical need.
With the time and talent that Danyelle commits to the community, it’s no wonder that she received the 2011 Phenomenal Woman award from the University of Southern Indiana and the American Association of University Women.
In explaining her deep commitment to volunteerism, Danyelle says, “I believe it is important to volunteer because of the impact it has on the lives of others. I believe in the “pay it forward” concept and want to demonstrate the value of service to my children, family and friends. I benefit from volunteering, because it allows me to build my skill set, network, and grow both personally and professionally. I don’t look at a program I’m involved in as something for ‘them’ or ‘those people,’ I am ‘them.’”