By Terri Priday, DEI Committee Chair – Outgoing
This month is a significant milestone in the history of our fledgling Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee. This month, new leadership will step in to guide our committee for the next year. This transition is exciting as I believe that we have developed a leadership structure that will grow and serve the Clyde Companies for years to come. As my time in a leadership role in the committee comes to an end, I want to express my gratitude to all of you who have served on the committee over the past two years. Thank you to all who spent your time and effort to develop and grow this committee. Thank you to all who did what you could, but not as much as you wanted to. I have learned so much from all of you about who we are at Clyde Companies, and who I am. I have been challenged in my thinking and had my eyes opened in ways that they weren’t two years ago. I have learned so much from the committee members and from many coworkers throughout the Clyde Companies who were willing to be vulnerable and to share your thoughts and your stories with us.
I want to take this opportunity to brag about the DEI Committee members. In its first year, the committee crafted the parental leave policy for all our employees, working with the ELT and Human Resources to get this benefit put in place. Over the past two years committee members have challenged our thinking and taught all of us with their articles, research, communications, and their monthly articles on the portal. We have enjoyed the Clyde Women in Construction videos that were produced by the committee with the help of the Marketing Department. There have been guest speakers at “lunch and learns” organized by the committee members. And, coming very soon will be a DEI dashboard for our leadership to give us measurable data toward our DEI goals. All of this has been done by our amazing committee volunteers while still performing their “day jobs.”
As I was thinking of my time on the committee, I wanted to share a few thoughts about what I have learned.
Make time. Look around and notice the people around us. Everyone has a unique story. Their path to being our co-worker is not the same as yours or mine. Notice them, ask questions, share your story.
Learn from everyone. Everyone has something to teach us. They come with a perspective that is unique to them and different from anyone else’s. This adds value to our relationships and to our companies.
Build the path. We all get different help along our life path. Some get it from parents, grandparents, and other family members; some get it from teachers and others get it from co-workers. Be the person who helps people along their path. Remove an obstacle, show a better way, or just encourage someone that they can do it.
Be intentional. Our human nature is to gravitate toward people like us. At work we surround ourselves naturally with those most like us. Intentionally make connections with people who are different from you. If you are a manager or a leader, look around to see who can add diversity to your team. Invest in them and raise them up. Not only will we will grow as individuals, but our teams and companies will be better for it.
I want to personally thank those who have served with me for the past two years who will be stepping into transition roles or moving on:
Outgoing Executive Sponsor: Brandon Henrie (GWC)
Former HR Representative: Ashley Dollar (CCI)
Outgoing Committee Chairs: Jessi Evans (WWC/CCI), LaNette Miles (SPC), Riley Vandenakker (SRC), and Eri Gonzales (IHC)
You have made working with the committee a joy. We have made many stops and starts as we have gotten this committee going, and you have stuck with us and made a difference. Thank you for your time, your effort, and your heart.
I want to introduce our new committee leadership team, and thank them for their willingness to serve:
Committee Chair: Elsie Powley (CCI)
Committee Incoming Chair: Eri Gonzalez (IHC)
Sub-committee Chairs: LaNette Andrews (CCI), Connor Rivera (CCI), Joanie Hardcastle (BIA) and Jo Pendleton (GRP)
Executive Sponsor: Dustin Olson (WWC)
Incoming Executive Sponsor: Mark Elder (SRC)
HR Representative: Dusty Fenwich (SRC)
You are going to take this committee to new heights of impact in all areas, and you are going to do it in an amazing fashion!
If you are interested in joining the DEI Committee, we will be opening up for new volunteers soon. Keep an eye out here and on Teams for the announcement.