Gem McCreary and Doug Nagy, classmates from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, reconnected in 2016 when they began working in Colombia. Both were at leading multinational companies, Citi and McKinsey & Company, respectively, and noticed one key similarity within their respective industries: the lack of diversity, specifically Afro-descendant and Indigenous (ADI) employees. In discussions with their coworkers and peers, they realized the ADI community had limited access to higher education (especially abroad) and job opportunities in competitive industries (i.e. finance, consulting, tech). Gem also witnessed similar circumstances during his time working in banking/finance in Brazil, where there was minimal ADI representation.
Influenced by their experiences growing up in Afro-American and Latino communities, these Booth alumni understood the value of support networks and Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) programs. Gem was supported by one of the most successful D&I development programs in the United States (US), Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT). MLT provided the path for his successful entry into several top tier MBA programs and a career in global banking/finance. While at Chicago Booth, Gem also noticed that there were virtually no International Afro-Latino or Indigenous MBA students across the multitude of US graduate school programs.
Knowing that MBA Programs are a major source of talent for multinationals and leading national companies, Gem and Doug believed that developing an MBA talent pipeline for ADI MBA candidates could change the diversity and leadership landscape in Brazil and Colombia. In 2017, they came up with the concept for TalentoTotal and set out to raise the number of international ADI MBA candidates and accelerate the careers of high-achieving women and men from underrepresented communities. TalentoTotal, with a cadre of exceptional coaches and mentors, professionally develops and trains ADI candidates to increase the number of diverse leaders in businesses and organizations across Latin America.