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Ellie Krug

2019 Diversity & Inclusion: Ellie Krug

Ellie Krug believes people are hardwired to see those who are different as “other.” That’s often the case for Krug, a transgender woman.

Krug also has observed that people often are eager to learn how to be welcoming to “others.” She helps organizations work toward that goal as founder and president of Human Inspiration Works LLC, her Minneapolis-based diversity and inclusion training and consulting company.

Krug was a civil trial attorney for nearly three decades before her gender transition in 2009, when she committed to live authentically as a woman and a “hopeless idealist.”

“Trial work is really selling an idea,” Krug said. “I’m back in the idea-selling business in the work I do now, diversity and inclusion and human inclusivity — the extent to which a human feels that they matter.”

Krug has delivered her human inclusivity training more than 500 times across the country since founding Human Inspiration Works in September 2016. Clients include Fortune 100 companies, governmental entities, court systems, law firms, nonprofits and colleges and universities. She recently consulted with a greater Minnesota law firm that provided “Cadillac treatment” to a team member who was transitioning genders.

“No one is alone in surviving the human condition,” Krug said. “If we allow ourselves to be vulnerable we will get past that grouping and labeling and underline the power of human familiarity. What gets us past fear of ‘other’ is being willing to become familiar, to listen to somebody, give them time, learn their story and then share yours.”

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