Advocate for LGBTQ+ Leaders in C-suites
Hannah Yankelevich Class of 2020 BEQ Pride LGBTQ+ Leader Under 40
(She, Her) is 34
In 2030, LBTQ+ women in the workplace will not feel the need to debate with themselves on ‘coming out’ in the workplace when they are asked “do you have a boyfriend/husband” because ‘partner’ will be the widely adopted term in use. #inclusivity
Hannah Yankelevich’s leadership impact so far has one central theme: increasing the number and representation of out LGBTQ+ leaders in business and the MBA community. Hannah’s goal is to help increase the representation of LGBTQ+ leaders among the C-suites of the Fortune 500 and ideally as CEO. Hannah believes her struggle with being “comfortable” in revealing her full-self in the workplace was due in part to a lack of out leaders as role models. Representation matters—and to young and aspiring MBAs it matters even more.
Hannah’s realization that she was part of the problem— “if I wasn’t out and driving advocacy than I shouldn’t be surprised that others weren’t out either”— fuels her drive to change the future. Her apparent belief being there is significant value in the LGBTQ+ leader being seen, felt and understood by others in the community. The lesson in her wisdom —simply put— don’t look for something in the world that your not willing to put in place yourself.
Within the workplace and the broader business community, out in the open and behind the scenes, Hannah serves her community to that end. Since its humble beginnings in 1998 as a student-run conference of 100 students and 6 business schools, Reaching Out MBA (ROMBA) focuses on educating, inspiring and connecting the next generation of LGBTQ leaders. As its first female chair of the board of directors, serving from 2015-18, Hannah had two objectives: 1) grow programming and sponsorship for women business school students in order to increase the female population to ~30% of the LGBTQ business school community and 2) increase the number of women represented on the ROMBA board of directors.
As an Associate Partner at McKinsey, Hannah leads LGBTQ+ recruiting for North America. Given the breadth of McKinsey’s client work and commitment to its LGBTQ+ employees, she feels strongly that there is an added benefit to companies that hire McKinsey as it exposes their organization to an inclusive culture that helps improve and encourage their own LGBTQ+ inclusive culture.
She has worked hard over the past three years to cultivate a culture of inclusion and to encourage future generations (undergrads and business school students) to be out during their recruiting process. She also stresses the need to be out in the workplace and to actively contribute to a stronger LGBTQ+ community in the business world. She is extremely proud of the impact she has had on both Reaching Out and within McKinsey as she does her part to cultivate the next generation of LGBTQ+ business leaders. And she is most proud of all the students she’s been able to help and engage while paving the way to leadership in the business community.
Outside of work, Hannah enjoys spending time playing outside with her partner, Allie – the two were recently engaged and are excited to start planning the next chapter of their life together.