Israel Ibidapo

Operations Lead

“As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”

Nelson Mandela

Israel Ibidapo is the Operations Lead at Cook Ross. Driven by results, Israel leads with a curiosity that serves as a catalyst for systemic innovation across our organization. He works as a partner to our CEO and in concert with each department to design solutions that improve the way they function to scale to meet our future needs. With Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility (IDEA) at the heart of what we do, Israel is an essential part of our nervous system, enabling us to operate efficiently and with vigor.

This 2-time graduate from the 1st HBCU in Maryland, Bowie State, has a natural conviction to champion the voiceless. He identifies his faith in Jesus Christ to be the root of his commitment to IDEA work. He believes that the work we do, caring for others, is paramount to the human experience. He remarks, “Caring for everyone is important, not just the people who fit your preferences.”

The philosophy of work for this Nigerian- American, Enneagram 3, is straightforward. He holds that anything worth doing is worth doing well and that life is supposed to be enjoyed with people you love. It was this way of thinking that grounded him in work during his time in higher education as he oversaw student support to ensure that, in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, college attendees were thriving in a virtual-only setting.

When he is not catching up on the latest release from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this Nebraska native – Maryland-raised rescue dog owner is researching the next great brunch experience. But if you expect to find him enjoying jerk chicken and waffles on a Sunday morning, you will be disappointed. Instead, you will find him singing on the worship team and volunteering at his local church. Other than that, Israel is taking steps to attain his Ph.D in Business Psychology, and we’re here for it! Too many ancestors died for you not to be educated, Black man!

“As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.”

Nelson Mandela