Katherine founded C5 Consulting, LLC, in May 2011 after 21 years at SunTrust Bank, Inc. as its Chief Disability Officer, where her primary responsibility was developing and leading corporate disability initiatives and creation of fifteen disability ERGs within the bank’s Diversity Councils. Her work at SunTrust began (following a successful fifteen-year career in the staffing industry) with the creation of a community outreach initiative, “Accessing Community Talent” which supported the bank’s desire to support underserved populations through employment opportunities. Recognizing the often under-tapped talent of individuals with disabilities, she initiated a pilot program, “Put Ability to Work” that resulted in receipt of the SHRM HR Magazine 2000 Innovative Practice Award, the first of many awards for the bank and which brought disability to the forefront for senior leadership.
Katherine served as the founding chair of the US Business Leadership Network (USBLN®) and the Virginia BLN, and has been instrumental in assisting other business-led affiliates around the country in start up and sustainability. Her contributions continued to result in national recognition for SunTrust´s disability efforts and included the 2002 APSE National Employer of the Year Award, the 2002 US Business Leadership Network (USBLN®) Exceptional Leadership Award and the US Department of Labor Secretary’s prestigious 2004 New Freedom Initiative Award. As a former New Freedom Initiative winner, Katherine is a member of the Office of Disability Employment Policy’s Circle of Champions. In 2009, she received a USBLN® Lifetime Achievement Award.
Katherine received appointments by two Virginia governors to serve on both the VA Disability Commission and the VA Board for People with Disabilities. As a recognized leader in disability inclusion, she was asked by the Assistant Secretary of the newly formed DOL Office on Disability Employment Policy to participate in a US delegation to the UK and the EU. This work resulted in her nomination and subsequent appointment by President Bush (confirmed by the US Senate) in 2008 to serve on the National Council on Disability.
Katherine is a nationally recognized speaker and has shared her expertise with international, national, state, and regional conference audiences for the past 13 years. She serves on the HSC Foundation National Youth Transition Center Leadership Council and the Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind Advisory Board and as the CEO and Executive Director of the DC Metro BLN. She is a SHRM certified Diversity Trainer and an ADA Leadership Network Trainer.