Aimee O'Leary
Written by
Aimee O'Leary

As media attention begins to move away from the black lives matter movement, we need leaders that will stay consistent in the fight against racism and remain allies.

Jason Wingard, is a dean and professor of the School of Professional Studies at Columbia University, with an academic focus in the areas of leadership development, professional learning and human capital management. He has put together a list of 10 CEO’s who have consistently used their voices and platforms to affect systemic change and have promoted diversity for decades and continue to do so today.

From the Article: 

1. Jide Zeitlin, Tapestry (Coach, Kate Spade)

As one of only four Black CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, it is no surprise that Jide Zeitlin is committed to diversity. Tapestry’s board is 40% women and 45% non-white — and, earlier this year, Zeitlin launched an inclusivity training program. He told Yahoo! it helps Tapestry’s employees understand that their colleagues have different perspectives, which he called “a real strength.”

Following George Floyd’s death, Zeitlin posted an emotional letter on LinkedIn, in which he said his organization was working on a plan that would convene social justice, legal, and corporate entities to address systemic inequality across sectors such as health, economic opportunity, and public safety.  In Zeitlin’s words“[D]iversity by itself doesn’t mean a lot until you change the culture of your organization. Until every employee can come and really feel as though they can bring their true selves to their job, you’re not unlocking the potential of your workforce.”

2. Matthew McCarthy, Ben & Jerry’s

Ben & Jerry’s, the famous ice cream brand, has been committed to social justice since its founding in 1978. It has spoken out on issues from climate justice to refugee rights, often donating a portion of its proceeds to various causes. In 2016, it publicly announced its support for Black Lives Matter — long before other companies were brave enough to do so. When Matthew McCarthy took the helm in 2018, he vowed to “double” the company’s social impact. Within a few months, he had launched a new flavor that promoted several organizations, including one focused on Black equality. And soon after Floyd’s death, Ben & Jerry’s released a powerful statement that went beyond the vague platitudes of other companies, wherein it suggested four actions to “dismantle white supremacy” in the U.S.

In McCarthy’s words“Business should be held accountable to setting very specific targets, specifically around dismantling white supremacy in and through our organizations… You treasure what you measure. You measure what you treasure. If you don’t put goals around these things, they simply don’t happen.”

Read more tips and get the full article online: 10 CEOs Who Are Maximizing ROI AND Standing Up For Black Lives

Make sure to explore Inspiring Workplace’s other content and insights about Diversity and Inclusion

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