We believe our regional future is directly linked to becoming one of the most welcoming communities in the nation, if not the world. Several great regional initiatives are underway toward this end, with the Chamber playing a leadership or partner role in the two mentioned below. Check back often as this section of our portfolio will continue to expand.
Statement of Inclusion:
The St. Louis Regional Chamber strives to be an organization that exemplifies inclusion. We define inclusion as “an environment where every individual is afforded the opportunity to succeed in the marketplace and fully participate in the benefits of economic development in the St. Louis region. We respect, celebrate, and embrace, the collective mixture of differences and similarities of individuals.”
The St. Louis Regional Chamber makes every effort to ‘walk the talk’ when it comes to focusing on inclusion in our daily practices and policies. We will strive to be a civic model for the development and implementation of diversity and inclusion strategies that advance education, productivity, innovation, and economic growth. Our commitment to this goal is evident in our leadership policies, employment practices, purchasing priorities, business partners and community investments.
We are an open and welcoming organization and take deliberate steps to be inclusive with specific goals for staff diversity, board diversity, customer diversity, investor diversity and vendor diversity. Results for each of these measures and targets are tracked monthly on our balanced scorecard.
St. Louis Business Diversity Initiative:
Launched in 2001, the St. Louis Business Diversity Initiative assists area companies in building successful diversity and inclusion programs through training, convening and consulting. The Initiative is made up of companies, organizations and agencies committed to attracting, retaining and advancing talented, diverse employees. A diverse workforce and robust multicultural supplier programs are vital to the growth of the St. Louis region and companies doing business here.
The St. Louis Business Diversity Initiative has established a series of programs to help companies and minority employees and vendors expand their ways of doing business to be more successful by being more inclusive — from skill-building, to monthly networking opportunities, to sharing of best practices. The initiative also is a conduit to connect minority employees with employers and minority suppliers with purchasers. Hiring and procurement contacts for all members of the St. Louis Business Diversity Initiative are available at www.stlbizdiversity.com.
St. Louis Minority Business Council
Working collaboratively with other regional leaders and organizations, the St. Louis Minority Business Council supports the repositioning of the region as a place where opportunities to thrive for minority-owned businesses are improving, employers and entrepreneurs fully embrace inclusion and diversity and where the region’s economy is growing and increasingly more equitable. More information on the Council is available at www.slmbc.org.
St. Louis Mosaic Project:
Launched in late June 2013, the St. Louis Mosaic Project claims an ambitious goal of “becoming the fastest growing U.S. metro area for immigration by 2020.” The Regional Chamber is a full partner in this project. Here’s a link to the presentation from the public launch, with more information available at www.stlmosaicproject.org. Watch this one closely … much more to come.
Please contact Valerie Patton, Vice President – Economic Inclusion & Executive Director of the St. Louis Business Diversity Initiative, for more information on either initiative.