Meet Lee Wills, ASML’s Chief Diversity Officer
Championing diversity and inclusion in the semiconductor industry
3-minute read - By Kate Brunton, October 25, 2023
Lee Wills has a personal mission that drives her personally and professionally: equal access and opportunities for everyone. For her, promoting diversity and inclusion is a lifelong journey and passion, and she feels privileged to help drive the Global Diversity & Inclusion program at ASML.
Can you tell us a little about yourself?
My career has included numerous senior-level positions in human resources and diversity and inclusion strategy roles at companies, including Intel, Sony and Qualcomm. I joined ASML in 2021.
I’m from San Diego, California, and I studied business management at the University of Redlands. After graduation, I went on to study executive education in Los Angeles and human resources management at Chapman University.
In my spare time, I enjoy volunteering in my community. For example, I’ve served as an advisory board member for the Elementary Institute of Science, a trustee for National University and a Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Board member for the European Round Table for Industry.
Why is diversity and inclusion important to you?
As I’ve progressed in my career, I’ve learned that ‘diversity and inclusion’ is about more than company programs for talent acquisition and retention – it’s about being intentionally inclusive.
Intentional inclusion means taking personal responsibility for creating a safe and trusting environment where everyone feels empowered to speak up and make a difference. It needs to be a deliberate and systematic part of how we operate. The key is making sure that everyone feels accepted for who they are and what they bring to the table.
As a first-generation college graduate with a son who recently completed his PhD, I’ve seen how opportunities can change lives, as well as the trajectory of generations that follow. My father was raised in the South in the United States and joined the Navy seeking equal opportunities, yet still experienced discrimination. My mother returned to college later in life. Both taught me perseverance in the face of adversity, as well as an openness to diversity. This motivated me to become a part of creating a level playing field where everyone can be successful.
Can you tell us about ASML’s diversity and inclusion goals?
Diversity and inclusion are important for empowering our people to contribute to the collective good, ensuring they’re proud to work for us and are engaging them with our company ambitions. Our goals include broadening our candidate pool to better reflect the talent available and promoting a workplace where all feel welcome to be themselves – including, but not limited to, neurodiverse individuals, members of the LGBTIQ+ community, and people of historically marginalized international and racial backgrounds
To help achieve our objectives, we created the Global Diversity & Inclusion Council, which is a special company-wide program designed to help create and drive our diversity and inclusion strategy. ASML also has many employee groups that form supportive networks and enhance a sense of belonging. They’re working together with the Global Diversity & Inclusion Council to bring about lasting organizational change.
For example, we aim to increase our people's sense of inclusion, which we measure through ASML’s annual employee engagement survey. It’s about identifying and reducing barriers, like adapting job profiles to entice highly qualified applicants. We’re only as effective as the systems we put in place to recruit, advance and retain our employees.
We also want to support inclusion in the communities in which we do business. One of our main focus areas is education because it increases opportunities and prepares people of all ages for an increasingly digital future. Our ASML employee networks actively volunteer in our local communities to positively impact our shared spaces.
What unique perspective will you bring to ASML? Search our open job listings to find the career that’s right for you.
About the author
- Kate Brunton
- Freelance writer & editor
- Kate has a passion for storytelling and languages and enjoys writing about the human side of technology. After working in communications for three years at ASML in the Netherlands, she now freelances from the desert of Arizona.