Recognizing Juneteenth in 2021 and the Diversity and Inclusion Council
Ron Stevenson, Senior Director of Integrated Marketing, Davidson Hospitality Group
June 18, 2021
Davidson Hospitality Group would like to take this opportunity to recognize Juneteenth – also known as Freedom Day, Jubilee Day, Liberation Day, and Emancipation Day. Juneteenth commemorates African American freedom and emphasizes education and achievement. Typically, a day or month marked with celebrations, guest speakers, picnics and family gatherings. A time for reflection and assessment, self-improvement and planning for the future. As more and more people understand and embrace the meaning, it demonstrates a level of maturity and dignity long overdue in America. Only when we understand conditions and experiences of others, can we make significant and lasting improvements in our society.
On June 1, 2020, our Chairman & CEO John Belden challenged our company by saying: “If I could start a movement, it would be called #ItStartsWithMe!” So, Davidson Hospitality Group took the opportunity to plan for the future by making Diversity and Inclusion more than a vision. We formed our Diversity and Inclusion Council to examine our company from the steering team to the front-line team members with the intent to ensure our recruiting and hiring practices truly reflect diversity and inclusion. To support this mission, we formed several sub-committees to initiate and report our progress and success in achieving our goal of diversity and inclusion in a transparent manner. Our areas of focus include Training & Development, Community Outreach & Engagement and Talent Acquisition & Recruiting.
As the world is inherently a diverse place, the hospitality industry must recognize the need to reflect this in the way it operates. The multicultural markets that have evolved today will benefit from hotels that recognize and create diverse management and front-line teams. There is a clear benefit to understanding the backgrounds and needs of individuals, so we can effectively reach diverse communities.
Davidson Hospitality Group has embarked upon a mission to define who we are by establishing a rewarding corporate culture with higher team member retention rates, and an improved ability to reach diverse individuals. By focusing on this mission, we feel we can ultimately have a positive impact on the team member and guest experience as well as growth and profitability.
At Davidson we want to do our part to ensure a level playing field is created for all team members to feel valued, respected, and give them the ability to reach their maximum potential regardless of their background. We believe the practice of diversity and inclusion enables organizations to attract and retain the best possible talent to problem solve and innovate. We also firmly believe it is the right thing to do.