Lakeland Bank’s Batts earns inaugural Excellence in Diversity award from NJBankers

Alethea Batts, the chief diversity officer at Lakeland Bank, has been awarded the inaugural Excellence in Diversity award by the New Jersey Bankers Association.

Batts, who also serves as a senior vice president of learning and development, was nominated by her peers for her leadership qualities, ability to impact the culture of her bank and community, and influence others to be more diversity conscious.

In her roles, she manages learning strategy and organizational development, including talent management, diversity, equity and inclusion strategy and initiatives, leadership development, succession planning and mentorship programs.

NJBankers CEO John McWeeney said Batts’ selection was well-deserved. She was chosen from among a large group of qualified nominations.

“Alethea’s commitment to diversity and inclusion goes beyond her work at Lakeland Bank,” he said. “As one of the founding members of NJBankers’ DEI Council, Alethea has become an asset to the New Jersey banking industry’s DEI initiatives.”

Batts said she was humbled and honored to accept the award.

“Thank you NJBankers, Lakeland Bank, our executive team and board of directors for believing in me and supporting my vision to drive the success of our organization and the communities we serve,” she said. “It is my life mission to make a positive difference every single day, and I am immensely proud to share this important platform with the NJBankers DEI Council.”

Batts will be recognized, and receive her award, during NJBankers’ virtual Economic Leadership Forum on Feb. 10.