Dr. Rachel-Yvonne Talton – Hidden
Since George Floyd’s death, Dr. Rachel-Yvonne Talton “Dr. Rachel” has made championing diversity, equity and inclusion her “GodJob,” described as “The work that is inspired by the spirit.”
For years Dr. Rachel focused on advancing economic development across the Cleveland/Akron region, helping to fund education, healthcare, workforce, criminal justice and access to capital and housing challenges faced by marginalized individuals and communities.
A strong advocate for women, Dr. Rachel founded the Flourish Conference for Women in Leadership, spanning five cities nationally and impacting over 7,000 women. The conference answers the question, “What does it mean to flourish?” Dr. Rachel thought many women appeared to flourish on paper but did not feel fulfilled. Appealing to young women, emerging leaders and established leaders, Flourish’s goal is to give women the safe space to fully integrate their personal and professional lives.
She and husband James Talton established the Synergy Talton Fund at the Akron Community Foundation to distribute grants to non-profit organizations focused on serving marginalized communities – particularly Black families – in education, health care, housing, and criminal justice.
Emphasizing that philanthropy is “love in action,” Dr. Rachel educates and encourages individuals and organizations to make positive changes toward a healthier, more inclusive world. The goal is to inspire more inclusive leaders and create a more inclusive culture where “Every individual’s constitution is valued.”