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OCTOBER 2020



Dear Roundtable Members,

At the Roundtable’s Annual Meeting last month, the Board approved a new slate of officers, executive committee members and task force chairs. I want to thank everyone for your continued leadership and support for the Roundtable.

As we prepare for the next legislative session, MBR will convene members to develop a detailed set of policy principles and priorities that will guide our advocacy in 2021-22. MBR is a member-driven organization. We encourage members, as well as subject-matter experts from member companies, to engage with our task forces and ad hoc committees—Education, Competitiveness, Energy, Transportation, Health Care, Innovation & Caregiving and Diversity, Equity & Inclusion—to inform our policy advocacy on Beacon Hill. You will be hearing more about this in the weeks ahead, and I want to thank you in advance for your commitment to making Massachusetts an even better place to grow a business and raise a family.

Best,
JD

MBR Open Forum Features Gender Equity Panel Discussion Led by Roundtable Members
The Roundtable convened a timely conversation on Gender Equity led by its members from diverse industry sectors. Members highlighted the disproportionate impact COVID-19 is having on women in the workplace and discussed potential solutions. The discussion was centered on new Roundtable member McKinsey & Company's latest gender equity report, which found that more than one in four women say they may now leave or scale back their jobs (30% at a managerial level). The report found that, in total, up to two million American women may quit over the next year due to the pressures of the pandemic.

The panel discussion featured Roundtable member company representatives including MBR Vice Chair Cathy Minehan, Melanie Goins, Care.com, Mark Butler, Cigna Health, Russ Campanello, iRobot as well as Megan Greenfield and Lucy Pérez from McKinsey. The panel focused on best practices and innovative solutions for supporting women in the workplace. The full report from McKinsey highlights six areas companies should expand to better retain female workers adversely impacted by Covid-19: make work more sustainable; reset norms around flexibility; take a close look at performance reviews; take steps to minimize gender bias; adjust policies & programs to better support employees; and, strengthen employee communication.

It was acknowledged during the discussion that the lack of women in the pipeline into high paying jobs, as demonstrated by data from the Boston Womens Workforce Council, likely plays a role in whether women remain in the workforce.

READ Full Gender Equity Report

National Business Roundtable Launches Effort to Advance Racial Equity & Justice
The national Business Roundtable just released a series of corporate initiatives and public policy recommendations to advance racial equity and justice across six domains: employment, finance, education, health, housing and criminal justice. These recommendations are aimed principally at reducing the economic opportunity gap in communities of color, including disparities in access to financial tools and high-quality jobs, education and health care and are the result of months of CEO engagement with more than 100 subject matter experts focused on business’ response to the systemic challenges facing Black Americans and communities of color.

Below is a link to the press release from the Business Roundtable and a USA Today op-ed from BRT Chairman Doug McMillon, President & CEO of Walmart providing more details about the work.

“The racial inequities that exist for many Black Americans and people of color are real and deeply rooted,” said Business Roundtable Chairman Doug McMillon, President and CEO of Walmart. “These longstanding systemic challenges have too often prevented access to the benefits of economic growth and mobility for too many, and a broad and diverse group of Americans is demanding change. It is our employees, customers and communities who are calling for change, and we are listening—and most importantly—we are taking action.”

READ Full Release | READ USA Today Op-Ed

Roundtable Welcomes New Member April Galda, Global Atlantic Financial Group
The Roundtable is pleased to welcome new member, April Galda, Managing Director and Chief Culture Officer for Global Atlantic Financial Group. April is a strategic, high-impact re/insurance executive with an exceptional record of achievement in the building, running, and transformation of financial service companies with global scale. An executive with broad strategic and operational experience at Global Atlantic Financial Group, Ariel Re, and Goldman Sachs, April is an innovative product leader with demonstrated expertise in commercial, financial, regulatory, risk, and people functions. She’s intellectually curious and known for building teams that meet challenges head-on.

In her most recent roles at Global Atlantic, April has had strategic and operational influence over a reinsurance business she helped to found at Goldman Sachs more than 15 years ago. As Managing Director, Chief Culture Officer (since 2019), she drove a broad evolution of the company’s culture, with a focus on opportunity and inclusion for the company’s 1,200 employees. She led the company’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the shift to remote work and subsequent return to 10 offices. She also serves as one of two Global Atlantic Directors at the Forethought Variable Insurance Trust, a $4B SEC-registered mutual fund complex.

READ April’s Biography

Roundtable Leaders Participate in 11th Annual Jobs Summit Joins with the Workforce Solutions Group
The Roundtable partnered again this year with the Workforce Solutions Group—a statewide advocacy coalition comprised of labor, community-based groups and business—to develop the 11th Annual Jobs & Workforce Summit, which brought together leaders from industry, government, higher education, and the workforce system. This year’s theme, “Opportunities for Action Now,” highlighted strategies to increase racial and economic equity, upskilling in the time of Covid-19, and how to help dislocated workers in a time of high unemployment.

The Summit featured remarks from Roundtable member and CEO of the Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology Aisha Francis, as well as Malia Lazu, Lecturer at MIT’s Sloan School of Management and Founder of The Urban Labs. Roundtable members continue to prioritize public policy solutions that support talent development and workforce training. Additional speakers included Christine Abrams, President of Commonwealth Corporation, who moderated a panel discussion with Aisha Francis and other leaders on “Upskilling in the time of COVID-19: What’s working?” The Summit also featured recorded remarks from Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley and a fireside chat with Congressman Richard Neal.

WATCH a recording of the summit | FOLLOW the conversation held during the summit at #MAJobsSummit2020 on Twitter

Opportunity to Join Massachusetts Business Coalition for Early Childhood Education
A major policy priority for the Roundtable—early childhood education—is an essential economic enabler, workforce support, and a highly successful strategy to address academic opportunity and achievement gaps. The current public health crisis is exposing both the necessity and fragility of the Commonwealth’s early childhood education system—and the business community’s significant interest in helping shape solutions that would improve access, affordability, stability, and quality for Massachusetts families.  

A group of Massachusetts business leaders, including a number of Roundtable member executives, have established a Business Coalition for Early Child Education to educate and engage business leaders as part of a sustained effort on behalf of early childhood education at a consequential moment for the Massachusetts children, communities, and the economy.  

Together, Coalition Members will have an opportunity to positively impact the future of the Massachusetts economy and transform the lives of millions of children and families. To learn more about this effort, please contact Tom Weber of the Eastern Bank Charitable Foundation.

Roundtable Spotlight: Cristo Rey Boston High School
This month, we are thrilled to introduce Cristo Rey Boston High School, (CRB) a Catholic high school located in Dorchester exclusively serving families of limited economic resources. By offering a rigorous academic curriculum, a unique work-study experience, and the support of an inclusive community, Cristo Rey Boston prepares students to succeed in college and beyond with the core values of dignity, perseverance, growth, and generosity.

At its core, the mission of Cristo Rey Boston is to address the still unresolved problems of racial equity, social justice, and income inequality. Cristo Rey Boston, in partnership with their supporters, is making intentional investments in people, organizations, and communities of color and delivering real change by building a pipeline of diverse, 21st Century talent.

The signature component of Cristo Rey Boston is the Corporate Work Study Program (CWSP). This national educational model leverages the resources of the local business communities to make private, college-preparatory education affordable and to give students an extraordinary experience that will shape the rest of their lives. This unique program separates Cristo Rey Boston from other schools in the area as students gain the knowledge, experience, mentorship, and connections to make their career ambitions possible.

Most importantly, Cristo Rey Boston is closing the opportunity gap for college bound students from under-resourced communities. Over the last ten years 100% of Cristo Rey Boston graduates have been accepted into four-year colleges and universities. Cristo Rey Boston is very proud of their college 'persistency' number, the percentage of students that graduate from college in six years, which today stands at 63%. That compares to less than 30% nationally for young people from similar socio-economic backgrounds.

Here in Boston, and at all 37 Cristo Rey schools across the nation, the Cristo Rey program offers hope and opportunity for talented young people from historically underrepresented communities. Interested in learning more? Contact Cristo Rey Boston President Rosemary Powers at 617-515-5647.

 

 

Racism and the Economy Webinar Series
"Plainly put, racism robs our economy of trillions of dollars in productivity.”
Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic

The Federal Reserve Banks of Boston, Minneapolis and Atlanta launched a series of webinars aimed at examining the ways in which structural racism manifests in America and how to advance actions to dismantle structural racism. The first webinar brought together thought leaders from economics, business, philanthropy and education to examine the impacts of structural racism on the economy. Future webinars will examine racism across sectors including employment, housing, education and criminal justice and will continue throughout 2020 and 2021.

 
PwC Launches CEO Action for Racial Equity
Roundtable member PwC CEO Tim Ryan recently announced the launch of CEO Action for Racial Equity, a new phase of CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion. This new phase consists of a two-year fellowship program aimed at advancing racial equity through corporate engagement strategies and public policy reform. Participating companies will lend employees to the fellowship program for two years while still paying their full salary and the fellows will commit full-time to work on racial equity policies. The program will focus on four key policy areas: education, health care, economic empowerment, and public safety and has enrolled nearly 250 fellows to date. READ the full article.

 


JUST Capital and Forbes Announce List of America’s Most JUST Companies
Congratulations to Roundtable member companies that were featured on the 2021 ranking of JUST 100 Companies by JUST Capital and Forbes. Their annual Rankings reflect the performance of America’s largest publicly traded companies on how they serve all stakeholders including workers, communities, customers, shareholders, and the environment. Congratulations to Roundtable member companies AT&T, Avangrid, Cigna, Comcast, Dell, Eversource, PNC Bank, Procter & Gamble, and Verizon on this well-deserved accomplishment!  


5 Minutes with Roundtable Member Tom Riley of Seniorlink
Boston-based Seniorlink provides family caregivers with education, support and case management for seniors with complex medical needs, via use of Seniorlink’s “Vela” communications platform and teams of medical experts who stand at the ready to help coordinate and guide family members tasked with the oftentimes arduous job of taking care of those who might otherwise be in nursing homes. READ full article.

 

 

 

Comcast’s Tracy Pitcher Talks Women in the Workplace on Fairygodboss Podcast
Roundtable member Tracy Pitcher recently shared her professional experiences and advice on the podcast of Fairygodboss, a career community for women. In Tracy’s interview with Fairygodboss, she discussed her professional journey, the impact of gender in the workplace and in her career, working and leading from home in the new normal, work/life balance, and much more. LISTEN to podcast | READ article

 

 

"Let’s not just return to our jobs. Let’s create the future of work."
Kevin McGovern, Managing Partner, Deloitte
If a good crisis is indeed something that shouldn’t be wasted, then what does this adage mean for Boston-based organizations as they ramp up business activity following (or amidst) the worst pandemic since 1918? It may mean an unprecedented opportunity to accelerate the redesign of work in a way that creates more purpose, well-being and bottom-line value for the enterprise and its community. Or, as Deloitte lays out it in a special human capital report, leading organizations will “draw energy from COVID-19” to make the much-anticipated “future of work” more of an immediate reality. They will “return to work by designing the future of work.” READ full article

 

Advanced Cyber Security Center Event November 12th
Co-sponsored by the Boston Federal Reserve Bank, this CEO roundtable will 1) review corporate plans post-COVID for permanently expanded remote work that achieves a balance of office/remote work for digital economy staff and retains the value of co-location for corporate culture and innovation, and 2) discuss the implications of these plans on our local economy and recommendations for the Commonwealth’s economic agendas—including transportation, training and development, and support for local communities.
REGISTER ONLINE

 

 

 
BRT on Advancing Racial Equity & Justice
BRT on Covid-19
BRT on Technology

Join the Massachusetts Caregiver Coalition to learn how your company can recognize, honor, and support the #caregivers in your ranks. REGISTER

@EversourceCorp, a Roundtable member, was named a #JUST100 company by @Forbes and @justcapital_

In a new survey 60% of @AIMBusinessNews members said that they worry about a reduction in their workforce due to childcare issues. If you haven't already, take this employer survey to tell us more about your employees' childcare needs https://surveymonkey.com/r/DBKVF76 #mabiz

"There has never been a better time to innovate our workforce development and strengthen the lives of our workforce" @malialazu @theurbanlabz speaks at the #MAJobsSummit2020

“Every American has been challenged by the events of this year but not equally; communities of color are bearing a disproportionate burden, widening an already large racial divide in America." @BizRoundtable commits to Advancing Racial Justice & Equity

 

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