Essen Otu is a DEI and community affairs leader with a career spanning government, healthcare, non-profit and utility industries. His work guides organizations in building more inclusive, equitable and sustainable cultures and brands through strategic stakeholder engagement.
Essen is the Manager of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) at Salt River Project (SRP) where he is responsible for providing corporate leadership and direction for DEI and belonging strategies in support of business objectives and corporate goals. In this role, Essen leads SRP’s DEI Department charged with applying the power of diversity, inclusion and belonging to build a more equitable and sustainable future for SRP’s customers, employees, and community.
Prior to Joining SRP, Essen spent over ten years in the healthcare industry with progressive roles overseeing D&I and finally as Senior Director of Diversity & Community Affairs, where he led the organization’s D&I and community affairs strategy through three-fold expansion.
He received his undergraduate degree from Arizona State University and graduate degree from Baruch College in New York through the National Urban Fellows Program.
Essen is a Class 26 graduate of the Valley Leadership program, Phoenix Business Journal 40 Under 40 award recipient, Virginia G. Piper Fellow and currently serves on the board of the Arizona Community Foundation. He is a former Board Chair and current Emeritus Trustee for the Vitalyst Health Foundation.
He takes the most joy in being the proud husband of Allison Otu and father of three beautiful daughters, Sahara, Amel and Aya.