Michael Paonessa

Michael PaonessaA USAA employee for 28 years, Michael is a founding member of BOLD, USAA’s national LGBTQIA Diversity Business Group, where he is serving his second and final year as President of the Tampa BOLD Chapter.

In his role, Michael is responsible for success in the following key areas: executive support and influence, leadership development, volunteerism, employee engagement, community visibility and local brand presence.

Michael’s team regularly collaborates with USAA’s other Diversity Business Groups to advance the organization’s local and enterprise wide Diversity & Inclusion business strategy. Under his leadership, Tampa BOLD membership has exceeded its 2017 membership goals far ahead of schedule. Currently, more than 10% of USAA’s 3,300 Tampa Bay employees are BOLD members.

Michael also oversees USAA’s sponsorship of high-profile LBGT community events and organizations, such as Tampa Pride where his influence has helped cement USAA’s dominance as the largest corporate participant every year for the past three years. His team also supports the annual Florida Diversity Council LGBT-Allies Summit, and all of these initiatives have a strategic focus on making USAA an LGBTQIA employer of choice.

Michael has fulfilled his D&I responsibilities while also managing a team of 13 insurance representatives. For his ability to balance corporate and diversity responsibilities, Michael was named the winner of USAA’s Management Leadership award for 2016!

Outside of BOLD and USAA, Michael supports and engages with numerous organizations impacting the LGBTQIA population at local, state and national levels, including the Human Rights Campaign, Equality Florida, Community Tampa Bay, The Plus Projec+, Pride & Passion and the Tampa Museum of Art, Big Brothers & Big Sisters of Tampa Bay.

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