Chad Simmons

CEO & President


Phone: 319.363.3707 ext 105

Chad Simmons is the CEO & President for Diversity Focus. Prior to his appointment, he held the position of Interim Executive Director, after stepping down from the Diversity Focus Board of Directors. His 22 year professional experience includes management posts with the Quaker Oats Company in Cedar Rapids, IA, Amoco Corporation in Chicago, IL and Whiting, IN, the Ameritech Corporation in Chicago, IL, Citicorp Diners Club in Chicago, IL and Denver, CO, Nabisco Brands in East Hanover, NJ, Kraft Foods in Northfield, IL, University of Iowa Health Care in Iowa City, and consulting firm, The PenDennis Group. Chad graduated from Morehouse College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Business and holds a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Iowa. Chad has also received his SPHR and GPHR certifications from the Human Resource Certification Institute.

Brenda Markwardt

Office Manager


Phone: 319.363.3707 ext 101

Brenda Markwardt is the Office Manager/Executive Assistant for Diversity Focus. She works closely with the CEO & President regarding office communications, staff, events and meetings. Brenda is the go to person for all event venues and food. Prior to joining Diversity Focus, Brenda operated her own travel agency. She also has a background as a sales executive for the Clarion Hotel & Convention Center, as well as a Human Resources Recruiter Coordinator and a Human Resource Information Systems Coordinator. Brenda earned an Associate of Arts degree in business administration from Kirkwood Community College and has completed coursework in business management at Mount Mercy University.