PRWeek 40 Under 40, Board Diversity, Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, Beth Ford, LeBron James & More

Every industry has “power” or “leadership” lists, conferences and events that are important validators, provide access and awareness and can be important both for companies and for individuals. Yes these are competitive. Yes they are time consuming. Yes many require an investment in time and many times funding.  Why are they important? You see those that are being recognized are getting access and potentially more opportunities. Representation matters. That is why every time we see a list, a panel or industry awards that lacks diversity we speak up. I’ve seen several lists recently that make me wonder what the barriers for having more diversity are – i.e. Adweek Power List. The most recent one PRWeek 40 Under 40. Now if you look at this year’s list, it is diverse, and according to editorial director Steve Barrett, it is the most diverse. However, I do wonder why there seems to be only one Hispanic and one Asian American on the list, especially if you look at the demographics. Steve says he sees this as an anomaly if you look at previous years. I believe him as I’ve seen first-hand PRWeek’s commitment to diversity, in fact they produced one of the best videos on the topic for the PR industry, so my questions in this instance are more to those that nominate professionals in our industry. Also, don’t get me wrong – yes every individual on that list deserves to be there. I am also not advocating for quotas, that would be a mistake, but I go back to the numbers and demographics. If this generation is more diverse, and if as I’ve been told, we are seeing more entry level diverse individuals in PR, why is this not reflected in this list? Are there barriers we are not thinking of? Could this impact the pipeline of Hispanic or Asian American talent in leadership roles in PR? Food for thought.

Board diversity continues to be another issue, and something getting coverage today because of CBS, this from the New York Times: “Mr. Moonves, 68, has been the chairman of the CBS board since 2016, and the majority of its 14 members started their tenures after he was appointed chief executive in 2006. Three of the 14 are women, and the board’s average age is 73.” Here is this 2017 report from Deloitte on board diversity, a recommended read. Also some good organizations to follow and work with on board diversity include Women Corporate Directors, The Executive Leadership Council, The Latino Corporate Directors Association and Ascend.

Other stories I am following this week, this Annenberg study that highlights the ongoing diversity issues in Hollywood, Latino leaders asking for Paramount boycott, “Venture Capitals Diversity Disaster,”and this from Forbes, “‘I Want To Hire Someone Who Is Nothing Like Me’: An Entrepreneur’s Approach To Diversity.”

Congratulations to Beth Ford, named Land O’Lakes president and CEO and breaking new barriers. I love this, “Two Kenyan Entrepreneurs Create and Afrocentric Stock Photo Marketplace,”  and of course the new LeBron James school. Watch his CNN interview here. Also congratulations to Jorge Plasencia and Ilia Calderon being honored by HPRA this year!

ICYMI “Your Career, Your Terms” is a resource for women. Created by Perry Yeatman she has great interviews that, as the site describes “provides insights and inspiration to help ambitious women have the careers and lives of their dreams.” Don’t miss the second season of “Your Career, Your Terms: Pivot Points.”

Photo by Andre Hunter on Unsplash

NAHJ, NPR report, ClassPass, Blavity, LULAC, N.B.A., “Vida”, Adweek, Walmart, Goldman Sachs, Humanæ & more

Last week the National Association of Hispanic Journalists hosted its conference in Miami and I loved having the opportunity to visit with some amazing journalists – the featured photo is one group – thank you Olivia Tallet! While visiting with attendees I had numerous conversations about the lack of Latinos as sources and how many Latino journalists continue to work to change this. On that note, thank you Lulu Garcia-Navarro for sharing this and this from @NPR that validates my earlier posts of lack of representation of Latinos in media. Of course this is not just a problem at NPR, look at this from the Columbia Journalism Review. The list we started of Latino sources now has close to 100 entries, so if you need Latinos as sources, save this link! Plus thanks to the NPR piece I found this – which I love – #womenalsoknowstuff. You can register as a source here but note “To be listed on this site, you must have: (i) a Ph.D. in political science or be working towards a Ph.D. in political science or (ii) be employed in an academic political science department.” CJR is also compiling a list, here is a link to that list (save this link too) and the form to submit other names.

This week there are many reasons to celebrate including ClassPass raising $85 million in Series D, Blavity securing $6.5 million in funding, Mindy Marqués Gonzalez, executive editor of the Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald, was inducted into the NAHJ Hall of Fame, I posted about two Latina entrepreneurs being profiled in key media publications this past weekend, LULAC selected Sindy Benavides as its first woman CEO and a first generation immigrant and Domingo Garcia was elected president. I had missed this article on five women mobilizing the Latino community for the midterms which includes Sindy. Also loved this story from the New York Times: “N.B.A. Power Brokers Gather, With No Men Allowed.”

Of course there is still so much work to do, which as Cindy Gallop points out is evidenced in Adweek’s Power list which only features 12 women and no African Americans. 

Stories I am following this week include “This VR Founder Wants to Gamify Empathy to Reduce Racial Bias,” “How Latinos Are Shaping America’s Future,” “Possible key to black boys’ academic success: Hire black men as elementary school teachers,” Walmart investing $2 million in “diversity internships,” and Goldman Sachs has named Erika Irish Brown as its new chief diversity officer. 

Other stories include this from NBC News about Diane Guerrero’s new book titled “My Family Divided,” this from FastCompany about sunscreen startups catering to “long-ignored minorities,” and this New York Times apology for its Los Angeles travel story – another example of the importance of having diverse talent in newsrooms.  Actually after you read the New York Times piece that led to the apology, read this about the show “Vida,” written by two Latina writers.  For more stories on Latinos, here is this week’s Latinx Collective.

ICYMI, watch this great TED Talk: “The beauty of human skin every color.” Not new but something that I read about this week.

How one startup is working to break the barriers that separate talent from opportunity for women

Usually I don’t dedicate a blog post to only one topic but I’ve decided to do more than one post this week and what better way to start than talking about women empowerment. Yesterday I had the privilege of joining Silvina Moschini as she unveiled the collaboration of her social impact startup SheWorks! with EY. It was a very proud moment as I’ve had a first row seat watching someone who understands and believes in the work she is doing to use technology to make an impact – as she says “breaking the barriers that separate talent from opportunity.”  Her vision, passion and commitment, coupled with the technology, are why she has been able to attract top tech companies and brands, as well as small enterprises who are being powered by SheWorks! talent. I am fortunate to be a part of the team helping to ensure that more women can pursue their professional aspirations on their own terms.

Some stats to keep in mind:

  • Every year, millions of highly qualified women opt-out of the job market due to inflexible work environments. Approximately 50% of American women with children quit their jobs due to lack of options to maintain a satisfactory work/life balance.
  • Closing the employment participation gap has the potential to create $4 trillion dollars impact in the U.S. economy alone and a global value of $17 trillion,
  • It will take until 2095 to achieve global gender parity in the workplace.

EY as founding sponsor of SheWorks! is walking the talk – in fact the announcement yesterday included a commitment to use SheWorks! to create opportunities for 100,000 women by 2020. Learn more about the announcement here. Julie Teigland, EY Regional Managing Partner—Germany, Switzerland and Austria and EY Global Leader-elect, Women. Fast forward said, “Every year, millions of professional women leave the workforce because they cannot find the flexibility they need to balance work and life. We’re excited to start this collaboration as we believe that SheWorks! is doing something exceptional in working to ensure that women and girls can increasingly benefit from the use of innovative technologies to join the workforce and they can play a role into the economic development.”

Visit www.wheresheworks.com, follow on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn and follow the conversation using #whereareyouworking #whereareyouworkingtoday #womenfastforward.

Congratulations to the amazing teams at EY and at SheWorks!.

Juneteenth, diversity in the AI sector, pregnancy discrimination, women founders, Carnival, P&G & more

Today is Juneteenth, read more about a holiday called “our country’s second independence day.”

The top recommended reads for me this week were this one from the New York Times regarding pregnancy discrimination and this piece written by Rachel Noerdlinger and titled  “Let’s bury the word ‘diversity’ and listen to communities of color before a crisis hits.”

“There’s no point having the Internet of everything if you don’t have the Internet of everyone.” Watch this great interview with Mastercard vice chairman Ann Cairns on the importance of diversity in the artificial intelligence sector.

Additional stories I am following this week include this on how to promote D&I in your office, this from Carnival Corporation’s CEO where he speaks about how diversity drives innovation, this piece from AdAge, “We are the 0.1%: why the ad world needs more female founders.” Also Inc.’s story on a new report showing gains made by black women in raising venture capital, but mainly about how much work needs to be done and this post by Isaac Mizrahi titled “Forget Relationship Breakup; Young Multiculturals Lead The Digital Breakup.” There was also this list of the best CEOs for women from CNBC. Alex Konrad points out that it is missing women CEOs, a point addressed in the story and this from CNN about P&G “The world’s biggest advertiser wants women to produce half of its ads.”

ICYMI this titled “Food Truck Serves Up Tacos to Unite Latinos And Muslims.”

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

Heineken USA, Starbucks, Google, diversity in tech, Variety and more

Feels like a great morning when you wake up to a Google Doodle honoring Dr. Virginia Apgar for her contributions to neonatology and to read that Heineken USA named Maggie Timoney as its CEO – which as AdAge mentions, shatters the industry’s glass ceiling. This follows the announcement earlier this week that Mellody Hobson, which as Black Enterprise points out, “is one of the most respected and knowledgeable black business leaders” will become  vice chair at Starbucks when Howard Schultz steps down at the end of the month. This is all welcomed news because there is so much work to be done.  

As you may have read, Google employees spoke up about their concerns regarding diversity. Here is this from CNN:  “Google employee confronts execs over diversity: Many of us feel ‘unsafe.” This is an important story to follow, not only about Google but about the tech industry in general. Oh and Google voted the proposal down. Read Fortune’s CEO Daily for more on this. Here is a great read on what needs to happen to drive change, as this LA Times story says, as “diversity fatigue has set in.” There are a number of programs and initiatives trying to address this issue. Thank you Silvina Moschini for sharing this titled “How this coding bootcamp is helping women land tech jobs at Reddit, Facebook and Amazon.”

On the entertainment side, you may have read that Variety’s “A Night in the Writer’s Room” event because of its lack of representation of women. Read more on his this unfolded on Twitter.  You also may have read about The MACRO Episodic Lab Powered by The Black List.

One of my favorite Twitter accounts to follow is @writersofcolor – where opportunities and diverse talent connect because as the twitter bio says “we don’t want to hear *I can’t find any* ever again, okay?”

ICYMI “12 Quotes To Motivate CMOs To Make Diversity A Priority.”

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash