La Toya McClellan’s Impact Story

What does impact mean to you?

Impact means how you are affecting something else. In this case, women have such a positive effect on the biopharma industry.


Can you tell us what your current role is?

In my current role, I give leadership to Astellas’ Global Engagement and Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion work. In essence, I look at the employee experience through the lens of diversity and work to ensure that all employees feel included and are engaged so that they can give their best talent to Astellas and Astellas can deliver for the patient. Furthermore, I work to ensure Astellas’ people, leaders and suppliers reflect the diversity of our patients.


Thinking about impact, can you describe 2-3 projects or initiatives you were involved in that mark a major achievement for you in your role?

One major initiative was enhancing the ability of our employees to self-disclose their sexual orientation and gender identities in our annual global engagement survey. We had previously used biological sex categories and not true gender identity categories and we had never provided an opportunity to for employees to self-disclose their sexual orientation. My partnership with our Legal and Ethics & Compliance Teams were phenomenal to make this possible in a safe and ethical way. By doing so, we can now assess employee engagement on the basis of these two identities and assess equity in the engagement metric.

Another major initiative was launching our Global Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Council which is co-executive sponsored by our CEO and Chief People Officer/Chief Ethics & Compliance Officer and chaired by me. This body allows us to align our global leaders around where we have been, currently are, and want to go with respect to DEI.


How has your membership in WIB helped you in your professional growth?

WIB has been an inspirational place to see women making the positive impact on the biopharma industry.


How do you plan to further your impact in the future?

I plan to further maximize my WIB membership through the network I can create so that I can both support other women and be supported by other women in a virtuous cycle.

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