Inspiring CEO Speeches About Diversity at the 2019 Catalyst Awards Dinner (Blog Post)
Every year, the Catalyst Awards Dinner draws prominent business leaders and diversity champions from global organizations. The 2019 Catalyst Awards Dinner was no exception. More than 70 CEOs and C-suite executives packed the dais at the March 14th event honoring four initiatives with the prestigious Catalyst Award. They, along with the 1,500 other attendees, came to the New York Hilton Midtown to recognize the initiatives by Bank of America, Deutsche Post DHL, Eli Lilly and Company, and Schneider Electric.
The overall theme: Change is possible and necessary—not only for women but for the companies that want to succeed in the Future@Work.
Mike Wirth, Chevron CEO and 2019 Catalyst Awards Dinner Chair, kicked off the evening calling upon business leaders to “seize this moment” and partner with Catalyst to create gender-inclusive cultures. “Imagine how much more we could accomplish fully reaping the rewards of truly diverse and inclusive work environments,” he said.
Over the course of the evening, leaders from each of the companies with Catalyst Award-winning initiatives accepted the honor on behalf of their staff, sharing why and how they champion diversity and their organization prioritizes the advancement of women.
Brian Moynihan, Chairman and CEO of Bank of America, discussed the company’s Investing in Women initiative and how its 200,000+ employees define inclusion as “the power to come work every morning, to be myself, to bring myself in the door, and achieve all I can.”
Dr. Frank Appel, CEO, Deutsche Post DHL Group, talked about the benefit to his 550,000 global employees in working toward a common purpose and how their Women in Management initiative was built on a premise: “If we want to have a more peaceful world, a more sustainable world, and a more inclusive world, we need more women in leadership positions.”
David A. Ricks, Chairman, President and CEO, Eli Lilly and Company, spoke about his company’s initiative, Employee Journeys and People Strategy, saying that while it’s nice to be recognized for the work they’ve done, it’s a journey and they are just getting started.
Lastly, Rajat Kishore, Managing Director, Schneider Electric Systems India Private Limited, on his company’s Attracting and Retaining Women in Schneider Electric India initiative, described how, while women in India have attained great levels of power in certain areas, there is still “a lot more to be done at the ground level.”