Sue Townsen

Sue Townsen
Chief Diversity Officer

Headquarters: New York, NY
Business: Professional services
CEO: Lynne Doughtie

CDO SUE TOWNSEN Shares Her D&I Views

I&D’s Importance

“Inclusion and diversity is both a critical talent and business issue. To be an employer of choice, and to have fully engaged employees, you need a genuinely inclusive culture. One of the biggest challenges we face is access to a diverse pool of qualified talent, especially in a highly competitive profession like ours. That’s why, consistent with our focus on lifelong learning, KPMG invests in programs aimed at preparing young people for the workforce.”

The CDO Role

“We apply a diversity lens to everything we do, starting with expecting our leaders and professionals to demonstrate inclusive behaviors, and holding them accountable for doing so. We use the same lens for HR processes, including talent acquisition, development, and performance management, with the understanding that it’s important to mitigate any potential bias in these processes.

“…we know people stay when they feel they belong, so our diversity networks focus on professional development, networking, and mentorship, creating a forum and safe place for our diverse professionals to come together, support each other, and connect with leaders and others who can sponsor and support their careers.”

Measuring Success

“We measure success against clearly defined goals focused on diversity in partnership, talent acquisition, retention and advancement, and leadership. In 2017, KPMG achieved an all-time high of 32.6 percent diversity in partnership and 31.7 percent in leadership….

“Our successes are driven by the actions of our leaders, the nearly 500 professionals leading our I&D initiatives and networks, and the nearly 20,000 diversity network and council members across the country.

“… the fact that nearly 45 percent of our people are engaged in a diversity network is also a tangible measure of success.”


“We’ve partnered with the NeuroLeadership Institute to develop ‘KPMG Include: The Science of Succeeding Together,’ which focuses on building skills that help leaders manage unconscious bias in critical talent decisions, and shifting behaviors to create a stronger, more inclusive culture.”