Kevin Chan Bradley: Navigating Diversity Horizons with Dynamic Leadership in DEI and Legacy Building

Top 10 Most Impactful DEI Leaders to Follow in 2024

Kevin Chan Bradley is a dynamic leader serving as Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Community at HUB International Limited. His distinctive approach to fostering an inclusive workplace and contributing to community well-being is reflected in his commitment to creating a harmonious blend between personal and professional life.

With a rich tapestry of experiences, Kevin shares his insights on work-life harmony, motivation strategies, and the profound impact of small acts of kindness on employee morale.

Evolution From Recruiter to DEI Practitioner

“Every leader has a unique definition of success,” shares Kevin, reflecting on his personal views about achievement. With a career spanning over 25 years in the HR domain, Kevin has crafted his own understanding of success: “I define success as changing lives, even if it’s one life at a time.”

Recalling his early days as a recruiter for United Airlines, Kevin initially perceived success as meeting hiring targets and satisfying managers. He traces his career trajectory to HR roles in the airline industry. “I started early in my career in HR, moving from a recruiter of hourly employees to sales recruitment,” he recalls.

However, his perspective underwent a transformative shift. Kevin notes, “Walking through airports or making reservations, having individuals express gratitude for a job they loved, even if I couldn’t recall them, reshaped my definition of success.” Building connections with community-based organizations further enriched his understanding.

Discussing the challenges of leading a company to success, Kevin reflects on his journey into Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) leadership. “To be honest, I fell into DEI somewhat naturally but also a bit accidentally,” he shares. Transitioning within the HR domain, Kevin found himself in the Compliance/Affirmative Action department, where a forward-thinking manager recognized the intersection between required “Good Faith Efforts” and the emerging concept of Diversity.

Progressing through diverse sectors, including food service (McDonald’s Corporation), aerospace (Boeing), finance (Discover Financial), and technology (Zebra Technologies), Kevin’s journey encompassed roles in both DEI and Affirmative Action. Leading both Diversity and Affirmative Action roles at subsequent companies, he acknowledges the critical role played by the Affirmative Action Foundation.

Kevin’s experience ranged from specific DEI roles to managing Affirmative Action functions, demonstrating a versatile and expansive professional background. This foundation provided him with instant credibility and the ability to utilize data effectively in making his case in the realm of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI).

As a DEI practitioner, Kevin acknowledges the broader scale of issues. Despite the magnitude, his concept of success remains constant: “It’s akin to being like Sisyphus, pushing that rock up the hill and positively changing one life at a time.”

Shadow of The Leader: Fostering a Culture of Integrity

In response to queries about HUB International Limited, Kevin sheds light on the organization’s strategy for tackling industry competition. “Our leadership, from our CEO Marc Cohen down, has been open to listening and leveraging my over 25 years in the DEI space,” he notes. While focusing on traditional DEI initiatives such as representation, HUB also explores internal development and external opportunities to be the preferred broker for diverse communities and companies.

Kevin emphasizes the importance of personal example in fostering integrity within his team. “You build and ensure a culture of integrity with a simple concept: shadow of the leader,” he asserts. Kevin believes in exhibiting the behaviors he expects from his team, acknowledging the direct correlation between leadership conduct and team integrity.

Guiding the Next Generation with Resilience and Business Acumen

Reflecting on the challenges of thriving in the DEI industry, Kevin shares, “In the early days, many of us in the DEI space would talk about how our goal was to work ourselves out of a job.” He expresses the initial hope that DEI principles would become second nature but acknowledges the persisting challenges, including movements to abolish and eliminate DEI.

Kevin emphasizes the resilience required for this role, stating, “This is not a job for the faint of heart or someone who wants to be universally popular.” He offers advice to the next generation of DEI practitioners, emphasizing the importance of resilience and adaptability. “They have to be resilient and never give up hope,” he advises.

Embracing the wisdom of the Japanese proverb, “Nana korobi yaoki,” loosely translating to “Fall down seven times, get up eight,” Kevin’s dynamic approach not only shapes the present but also safeguards the future. Recognizing the significance of understanding the organizational landscape, he suggests that practitioners should consider leaving if they find themselves at odds with a company’s culture.

Being a “student of the business” and demonstrating value addition are crucial aspects, according to Kevin, acknowledging the constant challenges and juggling act involved. Reflecting on roadblocks in his professional journey, Kevin notes, “Doing this work, there will always be roadblocks, just as there will always be allies.”

Drawing from the guidance of mentors, Kevin highlights the three critical aspects of addressing a leadership audience in DEI initiatives: “the head, the heart, and the wallet,” as taught by Mr. Gerry Fernandez and Dr. Ron Brown.

The Three-Legged Stool Approach: Talent, Culture, and Community

In discussing his role as the Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Community at HUB International Limited, Kevin provides insights into the diverse nature of his daily responsibilities. “I wish I knew what a normal day was,” he shares, highlighting the dynamic and exciting nature of his work. While acknowledging that diving into data and crunching numbers may not be his favorite activity, Kevin emphasizes the variability that keeps his role engaging and he realizes that there are many internal stakeholders that want data to help them make decisions.

Kevin outlines his fundamental responsibility as an internal consultant, driving the organization’s “three-legged stool” approach to DEI. The three legs—Talent, Culture, and Community—form the foundation for HUB’s efforts. “We want to attract, hire, retain, and develop the best, diverse teams and talent,” Kevin notes under Talent. Regarding Culture, he emphasizes creating an inclusive environment where every employee feels seen, heard, respected, and valued. Under Community, HUB aims to contribute to localities through philanthropy and volunteerism with a diverse lens.

To execute their DEI strategy, Kevin and the team adopt a “glocal” approach, recognizing the universal nature of the three pillars while emphasizing impactful local execution. “One size does not fit all, and that is what makes the job exciting,” Kevin remarks. Understanding the demographics and culture of each region becomes an ongoing exercise in tailoring their approach.

Reflecting on his diverse cultural background, Kevin expresses pride in the recognition received from his community. “Being recognized by the Organization of Chinese Americans, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, and the Asian McDonald’s Operators Association have been some highlights,” he acknowledges. Additionally, Kevin highlights being named the Employment Subcommittee Vice then Chair for the President’s Committee on Employment with Disabilities and serving as Board Chair for Access Living, a Chicago-based disability advocacy organization, as significant moments of recognition in his leadership journey.

A Dual Destination Strategy

In outlining the future plans for HUB International Limited, the emphasis is on becoming a destination—both for prospective employees and clients. “We want to be a destination. A destination for candidates where we are an employer of choice,” states the vision. This underscores the commitment to creating an appealing workplace, positioning HUB as the preferred choice for talented individuals seeking employment opportunities.

Simultaneously, the vision extends to clients, aiming to be their “broker of choice” and actively assisting in safeguarding what holds significance to them. This dual destination strategy reflects HUB’s aspiration to be a sought-after entity, characterized by excellence in employment practices and client-centric services.

“If we stand still and never invite in diverse thinking and new ideas, we run the risk of getting into an innovation and creativity rut, and the only difference between a rut and a grave is depth.” Dr. Anthony Ipsaro (mentor)

Striving for Work-Life Harmony and Employee Motivation

In discussing the balance between personal and professional life, Kevin advocates for “work-life harmony” over traditional balance, acknowledging that priorities may shift based on project demands or personal commitments. He emphasizes the fluidity between the two realms, noting, “There may be times when my personal life may suffer a little if I am working on a critical project with time constraints. And conversely, I work for a leadership team that recognizes I am a human being with a personal life that will take precedent over work at times. ”

Regarding motivation, Kevin points out the unique aspect of positively changing lives in his role. He highlights the significance of small gestures, such as the introduction of HUB challenge coins by the Military Veterans, Families, and  Spouses employee group. “That small act of recognition, kindness and inclusion, in my mind, was huge and motivating,” he asserts.  “For some of our employees in the military community, it was the first time they were recognized for their service and some military parents got very emotional when presented with the coin,” he continues,  underscoring the impact of such initiatives on employee morale.

Delving into personal goals, Kevin aligns them with the concept of legacy, drawing parallels between his Aikido teachings and professional life. “My goal is to develop my successors because I will not be around forever,” he states. Kevin emphasizes the importance of leaving a legacy that others can build upon, mirroring this sentiment in his approach to parenting. He wishes for his children to define and achieve their version of success while providing them with the necessary opportunities and tools.


In Kevin Chan Bradley’s journey as the Vice President of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Community at HUB International Limited, his commitment to work-life harmony and legacy-building is truly remarkable. As he guides the organization towards becoming a destination for both talent and clients, Kevin’s leadership philosophy is underpinned by the profound belief that remaining stagnant without embracing diverse thinking and new ideas puts us in danger of falling into an innovation and creativity rut.

Kevin’s dynamic approach not only shapes the present but also safeguards the future, ensuring that the legacy he envisions is one of continual growth, inclusion, and the ceaseless pursuit of innovation. Through his leadership, Kevin Bradley embodies the transformative power of diversity, reminding us all that progress is not merely a destination but a journey marked by openness, adaptability, and a commitment to positive change.

“Nana korobi yaoki (Fall down seven times, get up eight)” – Japanese Proverb