Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer, Norfolk Southern Corporation
2011 Fellow


Vanessa Allen Sutherland joined Norfolk Southern Corporation in 2018 as vice president law. Prior to joining Norfolk Southern, she served in a presidentially nominated and Senate-confirmed position as chief executive officer and chairperson of the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board in Washington, D.C. In 2017, she received the Standing on the Shoulders of Giants Award from the University of Richmond for embodying the tenants of “leadership, professional excellence, and scholarly achievement.” Vanessa was also a member of LCLD's first class of Fellows. 

As part of LCLD's Leaders at the Front initiative, Vanessa created a Leader's Pledge detailing her personal and organizational commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Read Vanessa's pledge here

Norfolk Southern is the first Class I railroad to join CEO Action for Diversity and Inclusion. Recently, Norfolk Southern was selected as one of America’s best employers for women by Forbes magazine. The company has also been recognized as a best place to work for LQBTQ+ equality by the Human Rights Campaign and a best place to work for disability inclusion by the Disability Equality Index.

Joined LCLD 2021 

Highlights of LCLD Participation 

Leadership Summit (2021)

Member: Vanessa Allen Sutherland

Communications: John Hartfield