robert-mccormes-ballou_web.jpgBOCA RATON — Office Depot announced that two of its executives were recently honored at an event hosted at Florida Memorial University.


Robert McCormes-Ballou, director of Supply Chain Diversity, and Shari Francis, HUB merchandising manager for the company, received recognition during the ICABA Honors Networking and Recognition Reception at the university. Francis was also recognized as a Rising Star of South Florida.

Francis and McCormes-Ballou were also featured in the ICABA Honors Profile Directory which includes South Florida’s most accomplished black executives, professionals and academicians.

At this premiere recognition event for black professionals, more than 450 attendees, including elected officials, business and community leaders, colleagues, family members, and friends joined ICABA (Identifying, Connecting and Activating the Black Accomplished) to celebrate black accomplishments and to network with corporate and academic leaders.

“We’re very pleased for Robert and Shari to receive this tremendous honor and achievement,” Zoë Maloney, vice president of Human Resources for Office Depot, said in a statement announcing the award. “As creative and dedicated executives, they exemplify qualities that all Office Depot associates aspire to attain and are true industry leaders.”

Other featured honorees included Dr. Niara Sudarkasa, the first African-American woman president of Lincoln University; Dr. Dennis P. Gallon, president of Palm Beach State College; and Marcia Barry-Smith, senior vice president of BankAtlantic and executive director of the BankAtlantic Foundation.

In his position, McCormes-Ballou developed and implements the HUB proprietary and Tier One engagement strategy. Through his leadership, Office Depot has received several awards, including One of America’s Top 50 Corporations for Multicultural Business Opportunities by Diversitybusiness.com and a Top Corporation by Women’s Business Enterprise National Council.

He has also served on the board of directors of leading supplier development organizations, including the Regional-Florida Minority Business Opportunity Center and the Florida Minority Supplier Development Council.

Francis’ responsibilities include being in charge of historically underutilized businesses in Office Depot’s product assortment, while implementing the Supply Chain Diversity communication strategy. She also spearheaded the industry’s first catalog dedicated to certified diverse business products.

Francis has previously been honored as a Champion of Diversity by Diversity Plus and as one of Women’s Enterprise’s Top 100 Women Impacting Supplier Diversity. She serves on the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council’s Board of Directors and as their Finance Committee Vice Chair.

Photo: Robert McCormes-Ballou