Diversity, Equity, Belonging and Inclusion Committee (DEBI)

DEBI logo_2022

Gaylord recognizes that it must be a diverse, equitable, and inclusive organization to succeed as a healthcare provider and employer of choice.

The Diversity, Equity, Belonging and Inclusion Committee, also known as the DEBI Committee was created to provide education, insight, counsel, and assistance. Its diverse employee membership assures a wide variety of perspectives, backgrounds, and experiences are shared with the organization. This collaboration helps Gaylord achieve its goal of providing compassionate, cross-cultural care while creating a work environment where all community members feel secure, welcomed, and heard.

The DEBI committee, was formed in January 2021. Since then, DEBI has made our committee and our mission not just be known to our Gaylord family, but available to them as well. We have been able to create platforms for conversations and education that otherwise may have been taboo. As we look forward to the future, we hope to ensure that our views on diversity, equity, belonging and inclusion are very clear to the outside world, whether future patients, staff or donors.


Encourage acceptance of cultural diversity and inclusion throughout our health system by providing education and modeling desired behaviors.
Advise and support the recruitment, retention, and advancement of staff from diverse backgrounds.
Provide resources and training to all staff, volunteers, and contractors on diversity, equity, belonging, and inclusion.
Create, foster, and ensure that Gaylord provides a culturally sensitive work environment for staff and a welcoming environment for patients and visitors.
Explore how Gaylord can improve access to quality healthcare for underserved populations in our community.

What We Do

The DEBI Committee is proud to bring attention to diversity of all kinds here at Gaylord. For patients and staff alike, everyone who steps foot through the doors of Gaylord deserves the opportunity to feel included and accepted. Find out more about what the committee is up to below. Interested in joining the committee? Or have a question or concern you would like to share? Fill out the form below and a member will get back to you as soon as possible. 

DEBI in Action

DEBI works closely with other departments to inform and educate about other cultures. We often work with the Food and Nutrition department at Gaylord to celebrate different cultural holidays in a way that everyone can enjoy... food! We also broadcast information throughout the organization through internal communication methods such as bi-weekly newsletters. Watch below to see our promotional video for recent events and activities from DEBI.

HubSpot Video

DEBI Initiatives

The DEBI Committee works hard to ensure all Gaylord staff have an understanding of diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Watch our "Message in a Minute" below to see how we push for a more inclusive environment for patients and staff. Our "Message in a Minute" series aims to educate, inform and remind staff of important tools that they use across the organization to ensure the quality of patient care.

Talk to Us!

Meet the Committee

Cheryl Joyner-1

Cheryl Joyner, Chair

Manager/Rev. Cycle Experience

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Certified Liasion, Cornell University

Andy Huang

Andy Huang 
Vice Chair

IT Manager

Committee Members

Lisa Kalafus

Lisa Kalafus
Committee Secretary

Vice President & Chief Nursing Officer
Joy Christi

Joy Christi Przestwor


Lisetta Thomas

Lisetta Thomas

Benefit Verification Rep

Allison Betlej-1

Allison Betlej

Marketing Coordinator

Jacob Hunter-1

Jacob Hunter

Senior Director of Outpatient Clinical Services

Priti Kapoor-1

Priti Kapoor

Annual Giving Officer

Mitch Podab-1

Mitch Podob

VP Human Resources

Astou Seye

Astou Seye

NEMG Hospitalist

Samuel Osei

Samuel Osei

RN/Nurse Supervisor

Vivian Griswold

Vivian Griswold

PFS Specialist

Ronell Donovan

Ronell Donovan

Admissions Authorization Specialist