Our voice is BUILDing
BUILD's new Chair is Sascha Nixon (left) and Co-Chair is Tyrone Jordan-Oliver (right)
Executive Assistants are La-Sandra Jones-Owens (left) and Yeni Castaneto (right)
Originally published February 19, 2021.
"Yesterday I had the pleasure of announcing Dr. Karen Johnson as the first director of Washington state’s new Office of Equity. Dr. Johnson has been a Washington state employee for over a decade, working with state agencies to transform our institutions to better and more equitably serve Washingtonians."
Washington is home to vibrant communities and diverse citizens who all have unique talents, skills and experiences. Governor Inslee places a high priority on boards, commissions, and agencies that are reflective of the diverse make-up of Washington and that utilize the impressive talent of our citizens. We are always seeking skilled and experienced individuals from a wide variety of backgrounds to participate in boards and commissions ensuring an effective and representative government.
Blacks United In Diversity and Leadership supports the Latino Leadership Network (LLN) and the Latinx community, and honors Hispanic Heritage Month.
In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month, your Latino Leadership Network Executive Board has put together a new video to welcome all Washington State workers and allies into the familia that is LLN. We took this opportunity to speak from our hearts about the value we see in participating in this group. See the video on YouTube.
A special thank you to a rising star in LLN, Larry Delgado, for being our editor on this project.
Each year, Americans observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from September 15 to October 15, by celebrating the contributions and importance of Hispanics and Latinos to the United States and those American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America.
Hispanic Heritage Month also marks the anniversary of independence of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. Mexico, Chile and Belize also celebrate their independence days during this period.
In the U.S. this observance began in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover September 15 to October 15.
Last year, LLN marked the occasion with a fascinating presentation by Antonio Sanchez, PhD, Director of Intergovernmental and International Relations at Central Washington University. Sanchez presented “A Proud Past – Building a New Future, the History of the Accomplishments and Contributions of Hispanics in Washington State.” The presentation included several revelations about the roles Hispanics have played in the history and development of Washington State. See the Facebook Live recording
BUILD would like to highlight these especially relevant resources from Leanin.org:
Working at the intersection: What Black women are up against
The State of Black Women in Corporate America
The above links, and many others, are also part of our Resources page.
"Each one teach one!" Although the author is unknown, the message resonates as loud today as it did the first time those words were spoken. As a Black American proverb originating during slavery and founded on the transfer of knowledge between black individuals who were denied formal learning opportunities, these four words' power is magnificent! Its message is clear. As black people, we are teachers, passionate learners, and leaders.
A special message from our Executive Sponsor, Marcus Glasper.
The Washington State Blacks United in Leadership and Diversity business resource group exists to improve the experiences of current and future Black state employees, increase the representation of Black people in leadership positions, give voice to the Black perspective in policy discussions about Washington communities, and build each other up as we move forward.
BUILD is firmly committed to diversity and inclusion and was formed with these values. Working together among us and with our allies is pivotal in accomplishing more than we can do individually. This spirit is at the core of what we stand for and one that needs to continue if we are to be successful.
Our current leadership:
WHAT WE DO
Our General Membership meetings are held monthly, January through October, on the third Thursday from 9am to 12pm. We plan to host several special events annually, such as Black History Month and Juneteenth.
We have five subcommittees that are focused on different goals of BUILD:
Joining a subcommittee is the best way for you to get engaged with us in this important and meaningful work! Our subcommittees meet monthly. Whether it’s your time, talent, connections, or resources - whatever you can contribute will make a difference.
Our blog includes but is not limited to events, insights, and highlights to augment basic education.