Toni L. Coleman Carter – 12th Annual Elite Business Leaders Conference Speaker


Toni L. Coleman Carter is the energetic Inclusion and Diversity (I/D) Strategy Director for the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) in Idaho Falls, Idaho. She’s a change champion who collaborates with Laboratory leaders to create an environment that empowers and engages others to achieve a competitive advantage. Further leveraging INL’s talent platforms to enhance employee capabilities, build next generation leaders, and drive bottom-line results. She also partners as a consultant to create, develop, and oversee ID initiatives, while increasing inclusion awareness and providing governance for the inclusion leadership councils (ERGs).

Carter has 5 years of combined governmental experience, which includes her time as the deputy mayor for the Village of Hanover Park. Prior to joining INL – she spent 23 years in corporate America working for Motorola Solutions in Chicago, IL, a $6 billion dollar technology organization. Carter also spent time in the pharmaceutical and food service industries. She worked for K&B (Katz and Besthoff, now Rite-Aid) and Phar-Mor Pharmacies as a pharmacy technician and as a manager for McDonald’s and Taco Bell Corporations.

In April of 2007, Carter was elected as Hanover Park’s first black council member. Carter’s position at the Village allowed her to assist with the recruitment, selection, and appointment of department heads and to help create policy operation strategies. During this time, Carter founded the Village’s Cultural Inclusion and Diversity committee, the largest volunteer committee in the Village. After two years of confronting challenging opportunities, she became the Village’s first black deputy mayor.

In her position, Carter created a homeless prevention task force that focused on providing solutions to reduce the impact of the 2008-2010 economic crisis, preventing home foreclosures and providing transitional housing for residents. In 2008, she was appointed to Hanover Park’s Crime Prevention Task Force, a team that helped design crime prevention strategies and methodologies for the Village. The same year, Hanover Park named her Inclusion and Diversity Champion, and she received an Outstanding Leadership Award from Motorola’s Women’s Business Council.

In 2015, the National Diversity Council honored Toni with the Leadership Excellence Award for corporate inclusion, and she was named Inclusion and Diversity Champion of the Year by Diversity MBA. In 2013, the Illinois Commission on Diversity and Human Relations honored Carter with the Dr. King Workforce Inclusiveness and Community Activism award. The 2010 issue of Who’s Who in Black Chicago named her one of the most influential blacks in government. She is a member of the National Society for Human Resource Management, the Illinois Fox Valley SHRM Chapter, and the Delta Mu Delta International Honor Society in Business. She is a certified diversity practitioner and is pursuing certification as a senior professional in HR. She earned a bachelor’s and a master’s of science degree from Roosevelt University in Chicago.

Carter dedicates part of her life to helping people who have been abused. Her memoir, When Trouble Finds You, is being used as a tool of hope, inspiration, and education for others who may have suffered the way she did as a child. When Carter is not spending time with her family, she loves building community relationships and leveraging strategic partnerships. Her husband, Gary, spends his time training community leaders, and they have three wonderful children, Candes, John, and Taylor.