Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Council

The mission of the NJBankers Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council is to cultivate a more inclusive banking community by providing our members with resources and programming on issues with respect to race, gender, gender identities, sexual orientation and disabilities. We are committed to promoting values that achieve more equitable outcomes. 

To learn more about NJBankers DEI initiatives, please contact Jessica Jakobson at jjakobson@njbankers.com

NJBankers Diversity Calendar

DEI Council Members
Alycia Banks, Training & Development Officer, Columbia Bank
Alethea Batts, SVP Learning and Organization Development, Chief Diversity Officer, Lakeland Bank
Ryan Blake
, MBA, EVP/COO, BCB Community Bank
Lavette Bobbitt, AVP, HR Business Partner, Talent Development Team Lead, Northfield Bank
Erica A. Connor, AVP, Human Resources Manager, Manasquan Bank
Dana M. DePace, Somerset Savings Bank
Brydget Falk-Driga
n, EVP, Chief Human Resources Officer, Peapack-Gladstone Bank
Michelle Foster, Human Resources Director, Magyar Bank
Brent Gardner, 
VP/Consumer Loan Officer, First Bank
Damien Ghee, Regional Vice President, SVP, TD Bank
Darleen R. Gillespie, First Bank

Karen Hackes, VP, HR Assistant Director, Blue Foundry Bank
Robbi Jones, AVP & Chief of Staff, Union County Savings Bank  
Raymond Kim, J.D.
, Senior Managing Director, President, Life Insurance Premium Financing, Peapack-Gladstone Bank
Steven Klein, President & CEO, Northfield Bank
Mary Kay Malec, Senior Vice President, Human Resource Officer, First Commerce Bank
Tammy G Mata, SVP, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer, Valley Bank
Silvia Merino-Topley, VP Senior Lending Compliance 
Analyst, Kearny Bank
Anna Marie Miller, SVP, Chief Human Resources ManagerThe Bank of Princeton
Xavia Mitchell
, First Vice President, Sr. HR and Diversity Business Partner, Provident Bank
Terrance M. Phillips, MBA, CRM, SVP,Chief Risk Officer, First Commerce Bank
Donna Redmond, 1st VP, Employee Relations Executive Senior, New York Community Bancorp, Inc.
Veronica Ross,
SVP/Director of Diversity Equity & Inclusion, Kearny Bank 

Tonia Thompson
, CAMS, CRCM, CAFP, Senior Vice President, Compliance and BSA Officer, First Commerce Bank
Chevonese Wilson, VP, M&T Bank

Ex-Officio Members
Michael P. Affuso, Esq., President and CEO, New Jersey Bankers Association
Matthew Cooney, President and CEO, Bankers Cooperative Group
Jessica Jakobson, Vice President of Professional Development, New Jersey Bankers Association


Inclusive Leadership with Carla Harris: 

Diversity Programs that Get Results, Harvard Business Review:  

Six DEI Resolutions Your Company Should Commit To, Forbes:  

How to Strengthen Inclusive Leadership in Times of Crisis, EY: