Hi! Welcome to an update from Whiteboard’s Change Committee. We’re an internal team committed to activating on our Anti-Racism Plan. At the end of every quarter, we take a moment to reflect on our progress as a company. We review what we've done well and what we need to do better, and we think it’s important to do this work in the open. So—let’s review!
As the year wraps up, the Change Committee is ready to enter 2022 with a renewed focus and reengaged team. At the start of Q3, we took a step back to reorganize the Change Committee and adjust how we work. We now require the current members to commit to a 2 quarter term, and collaborate through focused group work sessions. These workshops have created a space for us to make more substantial progress together on the shared goals. We’re really seeing an impact from this reorganization in Q4.
We have officially completed Goal 2, “Offer and require staff participation in at least one anti-racist education or training opportunity per year,” for 2021! ARCC, a Chattanooga-based organization, led the Whiteboard staff through an anti-racism training. We were educated on the terminology of race and anti-racism, racial trauma, and the history of the concept of race, and the ARCC team led thoughtful discussions and activities to engage our team. After the session, we collected feedback from the Whiteboard staff so we can continue to improve our approach to training next year.
We also began “Season 2” of Book Club this quarter. While this is an optional engagement, the book that was selected generated a lot of enthusiasm! The club is reading “Black Magic” by Chad Sanders. We’ve kicked off and we look forward to continuing in the new year.
As we conclude 2021, there are a couple of goals the team is revisiting and reorganizing.
Goal 3,”Provide pro bono support to Black or Latinx-led organizations,” and Goal 4, “Provide subsidized support to two Black or Latinx-led organizations per year,“ are goals that may ultimately be more or less combined. We have completed Goal 3 for 2021 and are set to complete it for 2022 in January. The pro-bono model seems to have a greater impact internally and with the client, and the team is discussing moving our focus towards more pro-bono work, with only occasionally subsidizing projects. This adaptation is a work in progress, but we’re looking forward to implementing new systems to attract more of this work and build it into our culture of work at Whiteboard.
Goal 1, “Achieve Racial Parity by end of 2023,” is also still very much a work in progress, as there’s much left to do here, but we’re happy to report we have started a shift towards making our hiring process more inclusive. We’re excited for new opportunities in the new year and plans to increase our reach for future open positions!
Unfortunately, as was updated in last quarter update, we still have two goals that have not yet been activated on: developing an industry directed initiative focused on advancing anti-racism within the digital design industry (Goal 9) and launching one community impact project (Goal 12). We’re hopeful to push those forward in January and have discussed as a team the need to focus on these goals.
Our ongoing goals like team hangs and lunch & learns (Goal 7 & 8) are going well and the Whiteboard staff has engaged in them with excitement! We’re excited for next year’s events!
We’ve spent over a year working towards the goals set out in this plan—we’re energized by the progress we’ve made, but remain a bit daunted by the scale and scope of the need. We step into the new year with a focus on the foundational systems that underpin our company: who we hire, who we work with, and ultimately—who we know. To a new, more equitable year—thanks for coming along for the ride!