Companies Celebrate Black History Month and More

Featured this week: AmeriHealth Caritas, Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, Deloitte, Discovery Education, Enbridge, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Fifth Third Bank, FLEX LTD., FM Global, Honda, MassMutual, Minnesota Power, Modivcare, Nielsen, Nike, Plexus Worldwide, Point32 Health, PRA Group, Rockland Trust Company, Sanofi, Target, TELUS, USCellular

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FLEX LTD. welcomed Candace Renfrow as its new vice president of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Shari Slate, formerly of Cisco, was named a new senior vice president and chief diversity, equity and inclusion officer at CVS Health. In the role, Slate will be responsible for CVS Health's diversity, equity and inclusion strategy, innovation, and implementation. The idea is to ensure the company's workforce of more than 300,000 employees "reflects the communities it serves," said CVS.

Jessica Lozano Williams joined MassMutual as head of supplier diversity. Lozano Williams will oversee the company's five-year commitment to spend $150 million with diverse, underrepresented suppliers. So far, this commitment has seen 18% year-over-year growth.

Rachael Williams of Blue Cross Blue Shield Association was recently promoted to consultant, strategic partnerships and development.

Sanofi reminded its stakeholders that Black History Month is not limited to the past. The company shared, "it's about celebrating the Black men and women who are leading change in their fields today, like our operations leader, Dr. Yves Fomekong Nanfack."

Companies Celebrating Black History Month: Stories and Examples

Target is building on a culture that invests in Black business and entrepreneurs year-round. "We're keeping the momentum going through Black History Month and beyond," the retailer shared, "[by] celebrating our partnerships with Black designers and creators, historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and more, building on our commitment to spend more than $2 billion with Black-owned businesses by the end of 2025."

The Duluth Art Institute (DAI) recently featured award-winning Minnesota-based artist Christopher E. Harrison and his work “Exodus,” which commemorates the migration of African Americans from the south to the north, and speaks to the immigration crisis facing displaced people today. The Institute is a nonprofit organization that supports BIPOC artists as they develop their craft and provides a platform to illuminate the experiences of those who have been underrepresented or excluded from history. During the pandemic, DAI experienced an increase in operating expenses and a loss in fundraising and grant revenue. Enbridge stepped in to celebrate the DAI’s important work and awarded the institute a $10,000 Fueling Futures grant to help with operational costs, including program delivery to BIPOC artists.

In celebration of Black History Month, Nike is honoring Black achievement by sharing visibility to the people and organizations combatting systemic racism and creating change in their communities and beyond. “We believe that our year-round commitment to championing, amplifying and investing in the well-being of Black communities—nationally and locally—has the power to drive transformative change,” said Karol Collymore, senior director of inclusive community for social & community impact. The company recently announced its 2023 Black Community grantees

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina partnered with the Charlotte Hornets for a fifth consecutive year to host a variety of activations throughout Black History month. The partners worked to promote collective learning, honor Black culture, and recognize the contributions of Black Americans – past, present and future – in alignment with the theme, “Honor. Amplify. Celebrate.” 

Deloitte published a series of perspectives titled, Uncensored: Stories of Black Professionals at Deloitte. "As our organization works to foster transparency, facilitate deeper conversations, and drive action toward creating a more equitable community, we’ve launched the Uncensored series as an important component of that mission," the company shared.

Modivcare hosted a panel discussion featuring company leaders who shared their views of Black History Month, highlighting people who've influenced them and their career paths. The discussion, titled "Celebrating Our Voices," was hosted by Modivcare's Black and African Affinity Employee Resource Group. The group raises awareness of social issues faced by the Black community and provides professional development opportunities for Black employees.

PRA Group, in partnership with the Sandler Center Foundation Virtual Academy, sponsored free productions about the American Civil Rights movement, African Folktales, and more on Black history. The virtual education programs are available at no cost to Coastal Virginia schools.

Honda released its Driving the Legacy video series, highlighting how Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) play a unique and critical role in providing higher education, opportunities for advancement, and networking to Black students. For over 30 years, Honda has supported the success and dreams of HBCU students through initiatives including the Honda Campus All-Star Challenge and Honda Battle of the Bands.

USCellular is hosting a Black History Month art contest, featuring art entered by local Boys & Girls Club members from around the country. Students were asked to create art based on their favorite Black STEM icons. Entries include works like the depiction of Mae Jemison, American engineer, physician, and former NASA astronaut, pictured above.

More Member Companies in the News

As part of its Empowering Black Futures Neighborhood Program, Fifth Third Bank is partnering with the Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO) to promote economic mobility in 10 predominantly Black neighborhoods that have historically experienced disinvestment. The Bank is making a $180 million commitment to deliver comprehensive support in lending, investments and philanthropy in neighborhoods across its retail banking footprint. AEO will select two entrepreneurs from each of the 10 neighborhoods and spend the next several months supporting the stability and growth of their businesses. The entrepreneurs will also receive $5,300 in small business grant funding from Fifth Third’s Empowering Black Futures Initiative.

TELUS announced a $125M contribution to support youth and build stronger communities. “Our TELUS team is deeply committed to driving positive social change in the global communities where we operate and making the future friendly for people around the world,” said Darren Entwistle, President and CEO, TELUS. “Increasingly, citizens are choosing to do business with organizations that share their values, exemplifying the symbiotic relationship between doing good in our communities and doing well in business. Now, more than ever, communities need the support of organizations to enable their critical philanthropic efforts. In this regard, by generously devoting 1.44 million volunteer hours and $125 million to support youth and build stronger communities, our incredible team is demonstrating that we are not just a company, but a movement of human beings with a passion for social purpose. These outstanding efforts build on the $1.5 billion, including two million days of volunteerism, that our amazing TELUS family has invested since 2000 in the global communities where we live, work and serve as citizens.”

AmeriHealth Caritas Florida donated $20,000 to the Florida Youth Foundation as part of a newly-announced partnership between the two entities. The donation will be used to help provide scholarships to disadvantaged youth across the state. The Florida Youth Foundation, which is the direct support organization of the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), will use the funding to subsidize the Scholarship Tuition for At-Risk Students program (STARS), which provides DJJ youth with a Florida Prepaid Plan, allowing them to attend a two-year college or technical school, tuition-free.

The FM Global Foundation is donating to the Red Cross and double-matching employee contributions to support disaster relief efforts after heavy rains and flooding in California.

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Members on the Move

Join us in welcoming new member: Minnesota Power and Rockland Trust Company!

Members from Discovery Education, Enbridge, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, Nielsen, Plexus Worldwide, and Point32 Health have recently registered for the 2023 International Corporate Citizenship Conference, happening this spring in Minneapolis, hometown of our convening sponsor, TargetReserve your spot today!