Elisabeth “Biz” Lindsay-Ryan is a diversity and inclusion professor, trainer, and consultant living in the Chicagoland area.
She holds an MA from DePaul University in Human Services and Counseling and a BA from DePauw University. She also teaches classes on Civic Engagement, Diversity, Gender and Agents of Change at DePaul University’s School for New Learning.
Background on Biz
Biz served as the Director of Programs at the Women’s Center at Northwestern University for nearly a decade. Her her responsibilities included chairing several university-wide committees, including serving as the Co-Chair for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Support Network. During her time with the LGBT Support Network she spearheaded efforts to secure support and funding for the LGBT Center. She guided change in university policies on gender identity and inclusion, providing Safe Space training for over 1000 constituents. She continues to work with schools to build their capacity to support students that are LGBTQ. Her efforts help schools understand sexual identity, gender identity and expression, while ensuring their policies and practices include all student experiences.
Throughout her life, Biz has been involved as a volunteer, an activist, Board Member, Trainer, Adviser and Consultant with over 200 organizations addressing a range of issues from racial justice to cancer awareness.
School Culture and Equity
Specifically, Biz is passionate about school climate and culture, and engages in extensive work with schools and school districts. She strives to ensure schools create a positive and sustained environment where all constituents feel safe, welcomed, respected, and valued to reach their fullest potential. Using developed models for establishing a school climate team structure, Biz provides training, assessment, and implementation strategies to address equity in schools. These strategies focus on systemic issues like culturally responsive curriculum, disproportionality of discipline, and achievement. She also facilitates age-appropriate discussions with students on a wide variety of topics including, but not limited to: identity, racial justice, power and privilege, LGBTQ, consent, sexual decision making, relationship violence, and sexual assault.
As a diversity consultant, Biz has facilitated equity, diversity and inclusion work in a multitude of organizations. They range from government entities, corporations, and non-profits to educational institutions at every level from preschool to university.
Due to her vast experience, her services build capacity for equity, diversity and inclusion by providing the following:
- curriculum development
- policy evaluation and assessment
- hiring practice review
- strategic planning with administrators, board members, managers, employees, teachers, students and parents.
In other words, Biz helps organizations transform their culture to foster belongingness and improve productivity and morale.