Ketchum creates global board to address diversity, inclusion issues

The multinational team begins meeting this fall.

NEW YORK: Ketchum has created a global board to address diversity issues at the firm.

The Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) Advisory Board will report directly to Ketchum partner, president, and CEO Barri Rafferty. In addition, Jocelyn Jackson, research director for Ketchum Analytics, has been chosen as Ketchum's director of DE&I. She will serve on diversity councils across North America and will help start new councils globally.

Rafferty expects the board to meet a few times per year, starting this fall. Ketchum will use the board’s recommendations and work on task forces between meetings to "make things happen," she said.

"We’re hoping the advisory board gives us some clear recommendations in terms of what we are looking at including all kinds of things today from what type of training we should do, whether it’s bias training or harassment training or looking at our policies and procedures," Rafferty told PRWeek. "Even recruiting. What should we be doing in how we write job posts and how we reach out to people and how to promote them."

Until now, diversity meetings at Ketchum were held on a more regional level, explained Rafferty. Those meetings will continue, but having a global panel will allow the firm to "get diverse points of view from within and [outside] the company to help us get more forward-thinking and even push us out of our comfort zones," she said.

The board includes two outside experts: Tony Allen, EVP and provost at Delaware State University, one of the nation’s oldest black universities; and Quinetta Roberson, Fred J. Springer endowed chair in business leadership in the School of Business at Villanova University. Roberson is also a published researcher on diversity and inclusion issues.

Aside from Jackson, the board has five Ketchum employees, including: Mike Doyle, partner and president, North America, and co-chair, Omnicom OPEN Pride network; Janita Lakhanpal, growth director, London; Michele Lanza, partner, global talent acquisition; Jeff Lewonczyk, senior creativity and content manager, corporate communication; and Beatrice Winkler, chief human resources officer, Germany.

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