CELEBRATING BLACK HISTORY MONTH: AN EXPRESSION OF PAST AND PRESENT
March 1, 2023
This month, we reflect upon the steps that we are taking to drive and celebrate racial equity across our Company, as well as the work that has yet to be done. Associates this month celebrated Black history and achievements through organized events centered around education, building community, and appreciation of Black arts and culture.
The below initiatives were organized and executed in partnership with the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee and Centric Cares:
- The DEI Committee launched a Black Employee Resource Group (ERG), RISE to support Black associates at Centric Brands. RISE will focus on three main pillars: Community & Culture, Career Development and Advocacy, Activism & Education.
- Creators for a Cause, the Centric Cares internal product series, highlighted Jmar Williams, Project Manager, Supply Chain Operations. Jmar created four beautiful prints, available for purchase by associates, to honor the storytelling, expression and creativity of his elders who paved the way, sacrificed, and changed the course of history to fight for equality. 100% of the proceeds from the prints will be donated to the African American Atelier, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and presenting the work of artists of color.
- We announced our continued partnership with The Black Talent in Design & Fashion Fund, a nonprofit dedicated to providing scholarships, internships, and early career development opportunities for Black students. Centric Brands will welcome new students through the initiative to our 2023 Summer Internship Program.
- Through Centric Cares, associates across our North American offices volunteered over 77 hours with nonprofit partners in our local communities. Programs included participating in the IRIS: Integrated Refugee & Immigrant Services 5K Run for Refugees, card making for children at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the elderly at Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Conception, and flower arranging for the The Hills Nursing and Rehabilitation center.
- To honor Black History Month, the DEI Book Club selected to read It’s Not All Downhill from Here, by Terry McMillan, and purchased all books from the Sisters Uptown Bookstore, a Black-owned and family-operated business dedicated to providing an educational, emotional, spiritual and loving environment for their diverse community. Across all North American offices, the DEI Book Club and Centric Cares hosted a book drive to support local, literary community partners.
- The DEI Committee hosted a virtual event series to bring colleagues together to learn, discuss, and enjoy aspects of black culture. Events included:
- The Groove Lounge – An event to give associates the opportunity to listen, appreciate and work to The Groove Lounge – Black History Edition, a live music stream recording featuring DJ Miles Green of the University of Berkley’s African American Employee Resource Group.
- “Black is the Color” Documentary Screening – A screening and lively discussion of “Black is the Color: A History of African American Art,” directed by Jacques Goldstein.
- Dr. Carter Woodson Virtual Experience Tour – Through Unexpected Virtual Tours, a Black-owned virtual team-building event company, associates learned about Dr. Carter Woodson, the founder of Black History Month. The virtual event explored two historic Black neighborhoods of Sweet Auburn in Atlanta and Shaw in Washington, D.C.
At Centric Brands, we are committed to continue to work toward a more equitable and safe future through providing year-round educational resources, workshops, mentorship and career development opportunities, and spaces to learn from one another.