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2022 D&I Symposium: Meet Cynthia Bass, Panelist

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May 25, 2022

The BNP is pleased to welcome Cynthia Bass, CDO, ECMC as a panelist at our 2022 D&I Symposium: DEI at Work.

We will be helping you get to know each presenter, panelist, and moderator in the weeks ahead, leading up to the 5th Annual D&I Symposium on June 16th – get your tickets here.

Cynthia Bass

Cynthia is the Chief Diversity Officer at Erie County Medical Center (ECMC.) She oversees the work and implementation of the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion work that is done at ECMC.  This includes cultural awareness, the training department, community relations, and the employee resource group.  Her office oversees anything that pertains to DEI work.

What would you tell someone just getting into D&I?

It’s important to set goals.  Talking to the employees is a key initiative to undertake when starting.  Get their feedback.

It is also important to connect with other DEI practioners around the region. Networking is very important. It gives you a chance to see what other people are doing.  Also, you realize that you are not alone out there in this work.  That can be very important.  When I began this work, I was part of the Buffalo Niagara Partnership’s D&I Council.  It really gave me an opportunity to network with other practioners, some were in the same boat so it gave me good support.  So important.

Leadership buy-in is very important.  You need the support of your leadership to carry on this work.

2022 D&I Symposium Best Practice Panel

This panel will provide insight into efforts organizations that leading organizations in our region have taken taking to produce the greatest steps forward in creating an environment of diversity, equity and inclusion. This discussion will share insights from D&I leaders who are leading the charge in our geographical area, and steps to take to make a “real” difference.



Listen as Cynthia talks about what to expect from the Best Practices Panel.

Biography: Cynthia R. Bass, Chief Diversity Officer, Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Cynthia R. Bass joined Erie County Medical Center in 2011 as a Benefits Analyst in the Human Resources Department, where she served as the central liaison and administrator of benefits programs for the more than 3,000 employees of the hospital. In 2015, Cynthia expanded her role by accepting a promotion to the position of Human Resources Business Partner. During her tenure she developed relationship management strategies to resolve complex employee relations issues in the Nursing and Behavioral Health departments. While serving in this role, Cynthia came to understand the need for Diversity, Equity & Inclusion initiatives to be embedded into the culture of ECMC, while also becoming more involved in the strategic initiatives that would lead to her second promotion. To further her knowledge in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Cynthia attended the American Hospital Association Fellowship Program and received a certificate in Diversity Management in Healthcare (CDM).

In May 2017, Cynthia accepted the position of Director of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, reporting directly to ECMC’s President and CEO. Her primary duties include developing and implementing a strategic plan that prioritizes and communicates the importance of diversity in a community-based, safety net hospital setting; serving as a resource on how to incorporate diversity, equity and inclusion into ECMC programs, policies and procedures; collaborating with all levels of management and Executive Leadership to develop diversity and inclusion competencies; and to represent the institution at community events.

As a result of Cynthia’s successes in her various responsibilities and endeavors, she was recently appointed Chief Diversity Officer for ECMC Corporation. The internal organizational knowledge and development of key relationships serve her well as she seeks to strengthen Diversity, Equity and Inclusion as part of ECMC’s unique culture. Cynthia’s positioning will ensure that as changes that shape the healthcare delivery systems continue to evolve, so too will ECMC dynamically evolve in response to the needs of patients and staff.

Before serving at several other area corporations in a Benefits Analyst capacity, Cynthia received her Bachelor of Science degree in Human Resources in 2002 from Medaille College, where she went on to earn a Master of Business Administration. Cynthia is also profoundly rooted in her community’s Servant Leadership. Her work includes multiple leadership positions at Gospel Temple Life Changing Ministries, including serving as Assistant Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Church Administrator, and President of the Women’s Ministry. Additionally, Cynthia holds membership with the Buffalo Niagara Partnership Diversity Council and represents ECMC on several Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Councils across New York State.

Among other honors, Cynthia was recognized by the Buffalo Niagara Human Resources Association for her service to the field of Human Resources as the “2012 HR Professional of the Year” and honored as a 2021 Black Achievers Awardee.

ABOUT ERIE COUNTY MEDICAL CENTER (ECMC) CORPORATION:  The ECMC Corporation was established as a  New York State Public Benefit Corporation and since 2004 has  included an advanced academic medical center with 573 inpatient beds, on- and off-campus health centers, more than 30 outpatient specialty care services and Terrace View, a 390-bed long-term care facility.  ECMC is Western New York’s only Level 1 Adult Trauma Center, as well as a regional center for burn care, behavioral health services, transplantation, medical oncology and head & neck cancer care, rehabilitation and a major teaching facility for the University at Buffalo.  Most ECMC physicians, dentists and pharmacists are dedicated faculty members of the university and/or members of a private practice plan.  More Western New York residents are choosing ECMC for exceptional patient care and patient experiences—the difference between healthcare and true care™.

Attend the 2022 D&I Symposium

Our 5th Annual Diversity & Inclusion Symposium will feature national experts on D&I sharing their knowledge on subjects such as building an inclusive culture, and the best practices, cultural assessments, and dimensions of diversity.

KEYNOTE: Melissa Donaldson, Chief Diversity Officer, Wintrust.

This event will feature workshops and break-out sessions with actionable next steps for attendees to take away.

Thursday, June 16, 2022
9.30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. EDT
Register to Attend Here

See Full Event Details & Agenda Here

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