Wake Forest Baptist Names Top HR Leader Cheryl Locke to Newly-Created Position: Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer

August 10, 2016

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center has announced Cheryl E. H. Locke as the Medical Center’s first Vice President and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer. Locke remains on the executive leadership team, reporting to the Chief Executive Officer.

As Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer, Locke is responsible for development and advancement of the overall strategy for diversity, inclusion and equity across the Medical Center through internal and community partnerships. In addition, Locke will partner with leaders across the Medical Center to develop a diversity and inclusion strategic plan with specific annual goals. This includes the design and launch of comprehensive, culturally competent and responsive education for students, staff and faculty, and implementation of best practices to recruit and retain a diverse workforce with emphasis on faculty and leadership.

“Creating a diverse, equitable and culturally attuned workplace is a strategic initiative for the Medical Center that enhances our work environment, the care and education we provide and reinforces connections to our community,” said John D. McConnell, M.D., CEO, Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center.

“Cheryl has been a tireless advocate for diversity and inclusion throughout her career. She brings passion, knowledge and experience that will help us build the culture of diversity, inclusion and equity in our community. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank her for her leadership of this important and transformational initiative. Our goal is to create a welcoming, positive, diverse, values-based environment that attracts, retains, engages and develops the best talent in clinical, education and research, equity of care and opportunities as well as  patient, student and consumer experience, all of which Cheryl will be leading.”

Locke joined Wake Forest Baptist in October 2008 as Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer. She was a key member of the executive team charged with the integration of the clinical, education and research components of the Medical Center.

Prior to joining the Medical Center, Locke was the Chief Human Resources Officer at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, a 900-bed academic medical center and comprehensive research university, where she had responsibility for all university and hospital HR services and programs.

Locke has served in multiple HR positions with national corporations and multiple academic medical centers. Locke is the current chair of the Foundation Board of Winston-Salem State University, the past president and member of Forsyth Futures and had served on the Board of Habitat for Humanity of Forsyth County. 

Media Relations

Paula Faria: pfaria@wakehealth.edu, 336-716-1279

Mac Ingraham: mingraha@wakehealth.edu, 336-716-3487