A Drive for Diversity
By Kathryn Walsh | Photography by Mary Grace Johnson
Twiggy Eure is used to people asking about her name.
“That’s usually a point of conversation,” she laughed. For the record, her mom was a model in the late ’60s and early ’70s and liked the name of fellow model, Twiggy.
Lucky for anyone who wants to talk, Twiggy is readily available. Since starting her job as diversity, equity and inclusion recruitment/ retention coordinator for Crouse Health in September, Twiggy has established an open-door policy for her office.
“I don’t think you can serve as a great influential diversity and inclusion leader in your organization if you’re not seen,” she explained.
That’s why the walk to her office is the highlight of her day. Seeing patients and their families in the hallways reminds Twiggy of Crouse’s mission to give every patient the best care possible. Meeting that goal has everything to do with diversity, she believes.
“Our culture, our employees, our people have got to be the best — not just from an educational and certification background, but from a cultural sensitivity perspective,” she said. “So no matter what you look like, when you hit that front door, you know you’re going to receive great care.”
The HR staff is planning a full slate of events for 2017 designed to represent all populations in Crouse’s system, including veterans and the LGBTQ community, Twiggy said.
In her role — a new position at Crouse — she does a lot of staff recruiting and works with both the human resources team and the organization’s diversity committee.
“I’m ensuring we’re hiring the best and the brightest talent that’s out there,” she said.
Coordinator is a natural follow-up to her last job, recruiting teachers for the Syracuse City School District. Twiggy wasn’t looking to change jobs; but when a member of Crouse’s diversity committee called to talk about a new possibility, she decided to interview. She’s glad she did.
“I immediately fell in love with the vision here,” she said. “[CEO] Kimberly Boynton is absolutely incredible. First of all, she’s a woman. She is young. To hear her talk about her passion for diversity and inclusion really does something to me every time. I feel like we can put capes on and just fly through the building. She brings that out of me.”
While Twiggy’s still getting her footing, she’s already started to feel at home. For that, she credits Kimberly’s vision and values, which line up with her own. Twiggy has always been drawn to strong leaders, she said.
“Each position I’ve ever had, it’s been because of the visionary,” she said, “the person at the top who communicated their vision to me and said, ‘I need you to join my team.’”
She cites working on the DestinyUSA project as a community liaison as a career highlight. She was so motivated by the entrepreneurial energy of Bob Congel’s executive team that in 2006, she started her own firm, Virtuous Consulting, which she still runs.
There’s not a lot of time for her side business, though, with four children between the ages of 13 and 27, and a grandchild on the way. Together with her husband Erik, she pastors at the church they own in East Syracuse, The Promise Land.
Twiggy’s faith drives her and gives her strength to accomplish her goals.
“I sincerely believe that when we are walking in our purpose — the purpose that was designed for our lives — God graces us to do what we do,” she said. “There’s no magic formula. I think I’ve just been graced with the wherewithal to get it all done.”
She thinks back to struggles, like working her way through school as a young single mother, or hearing from her husband that he felt God calling him out of his lucrative HR job and into full-time ministry.
“I was like, ‘You better ask him again! ’Cause right now, we’re doing OK here, buddy!’” Twiggy remembered with a smile.
But all in all, she believes it’s all been part of a powerful masterplan. She’s inspired by the thought that her life is designed to be a blessing to somebody else.
“I’m inspired every time I know I help somebody. When another woman I’m talking to about self-empowerment says ‘I got it!’ — that does something for me,” Twiggy said. “That means I am fulfilling my purpose. I can be one-on-one or preaching in front of 500 women. I get the same feeling.” SWM
To learn more about Crouse Health, visit crouse.org.