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ICAN Advisory Board Spotlight: Coils to Locs

Dianne Austin, B.S. is the CEO and co-founder of the startup, Coils to Locs, a direct-to-hospital distributor of high-quality coily, curly hair prosthesis (wigs) for Black women or any woman with highly textured hair. Coils to Locs is at the forefront of addressing an unrecognized health care disparity that impacts Black women experiencing chemotherapy-related hair loss: The lack of coily, curly wigs that are available at cancer centers in the U.S. that can be purchased with health insurance reimbursement.

Dianne has a bachelors in Communications from Emerson College and completed one year of a two-year Master’s program in Human Resources Management at Boston University before being diagnosed with cancer in 2015. She holds an administrative fellow certificate from Harvard University as well as a certificate in entrepreneurship from Babson College’s, Black Women Entrepreneurial Leadership program, (BWEL).

A six-year breast cancer survivor and thriver, Dianne is passionate about healthcare equity issues given her personal experiences and that of family and friends within the healthcare system. She is always seeking opportunities to be involved in community engagement activities that provide a patient care perspective through the lens of a Black woman navigating the healthcare system.

Comprised of successful small business owners who have participated in one of our Urban Business Initiatives, the ICAN Advisory Board offers innovative advice and dynamic perspectives in the strategy and implementation of the Inner City Alumni Network (ICAN).


ICIC drives inclusive economic prosperity in under-resourced communities through innovative research and programs to create jobs, income, and wealth for local residents.


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