Diversity Straight Up: Cedric Ellis

Diversity Straight Up: Cedric Ellis
Cedric Ellis Diversity Straight Up

In the latest episode of the CBJ podcast “Diversity Straight Up,” hosts Sarika Bhakta and Anthony Arrington talk with Cedric Ellis, executive vice president and chief enterprise services officer at CUNA Mutual Group, about his family background and work ethic. Listen below or subscribe to the show at SoundCloudApple PodcastsSpotify, Google Podcasts, and Stitcher, or catch the new video podcast at the CBJ’s YouTube channel.

Season 2 of Diversity Straight Up is brought to you by GreenState Credit Union and sponsored by Alliant Energy. Additional support is provided by Collins Aerospace and the city of Cedar Rapids.

About Cedric Ellis:

Cedric Ellis is the executive vice president, chief enterprise services officer for CUNA Mutual Group where he leads all the company’s shared service functions including diversity, equity and inclusion. Previously, he was senior vice president of Human Resources, ultimately responsible shaping HR strategy and ensured that the organization’s people, performance and strategy supported the company’s culture.

Ellis also serves as the president of the CUNA Mutual Group Foundation, the organization’s philanthropic arm focused on supporting organizations that seek to solve educational, economic and racial disparities, advance economic stability and support the sustainable development of the communities where CUNA Mutual Group offices reside.

Ellis graduated from Assumption College with a bachelor’s degree in English and Social Rehabilitation Services.

About the hosts:
Sarika Bhakta is president of Nikeya Diversity Consulting and a Certified Diversity Executive with more than 20 years of experience in leadership, management, talent attraction/retention and resource acquisition/development. Born in Gujarat, India and raised in the Midwest, Sarika empowers leaders to identify their authentic self to be successful change agents in today’s global economy.

Anthony Arrington is co-founder and managing partner with Top RANK Professional & Executive Search and Consulting, a search firm focused on helping companies acquire professional and executive-level talent, with a special emphasis on diverse and inclusive leadership. He has more than 20 years of experience in management, strategic planning, leadership and staff development in both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors.

Transcript of Diversity Straight Up Podcast – Cedric Ellis: Equity and Accessibility

Voice-over 1: You’re listening to a Corridor Business Journal Podcast.

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Voice-over 2: It’s time for straight talk about diversity, frank question, honest answers, and real insights. It’s Diversity Straight Up, brought to you by GreenState Credit Union, with your hosts Sarika Bhakta of Nikeya Diversity Consulting and Anthony Arrington of Top RANK professional and executive search firm. Diversity Straight Up, brought to you by GreenState Credit Union, is a Corridor Business Journal podcast. On today’s episode, Cedric Ellis, executive vice president and chief enterprise services officer of CUNA Mutual Group.

Cedric Ellis: The thing that I’ve always tried to talk to leaders about is doing your own work. Moving along that journey around understanding diversity, equity, inclusion, and doing what you need to do to show up right, to show up in a way in which is inclusive, and to do all that you can do to be a good champion at knocking down barriers to inclusion.

Voice-over 2: We’ll be right back.

Voice-over 3: GreenState Credit Union is proud to sponsor Diversity Straight Up. Established in 1938, GreenState is Iowa’s largest financial cooperative serving nearly 250,000 members of all walks of life. GreenState’s products include checking accounts, loans, investments, insurance, commercial services, mortgages, and credit cards. Profits are returned to members in the form of better rates on deposits and loans. We encourage you to learn more at greenstate.org. GreenState is federally insured by the NCUA and is an equal housing opportunity lender.

Voice-over 2: Diversity Straight Up, brought to you by GreenState Credit Union, is also sponsored by Alliant Energy.

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Sarika Bhakta: Welcome to another episode at the Corridor Business Journal’s Diversity Straight Up. I’m your host, Sarika Bhakta.

Anthony Arrington: And I’m Anthony Arrington, and we’re about to have a little fun today. We’ll get into it with Cedric Ellis, who’s executive vice president of CUNA Mutual. We’ll talk a little bit about him. We’re going to have a good time. We’re going to get under the hood and have a great conversation.

Sarika: Yes, but something’s on my mind.

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Voice-over 4: There’s something on my mind.

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Sarika: I’ve been on quite a few business travels, vacation travels. I’ve noticed that as you engage in a dialogue with someone, everything is great. Suddenly you have a conversation about mask and vaccine, and suddenly the individual that you connected with, maybe the dialogue and the tone just shifts immediately.

I was in a restaurant. I was masked up and I could still engage in dialogue with individuals. This individual that I was having a conversation about, he said, “I’m not vaccinated. Do you have any concerns of interacting with me?” I said, “Not at all.” Then we were engaging in a group dialogue and someone else said, “Well, I’m a Republican, I’m vaccinated and you should too because you indicate you’re a Republican.”

It’s just interesting to see the dynamics of the conversation. We were having a very healthy one. At the end of the night, another couple comes up and attacked the individual that I met saying, “Thank you for ruining my night. I was having a great time until you started to talk about your perspectives on vaccination and masks.”

Anthony: So they’re dipping into your conversation?

Sarika: Correct, and so the other gentleman that I was speaking with said, “This was a private conversation that we were engaging in and you don’t know much about the context that we were having a conversation.” But then this other couple, as soon as they were leaving, the woman looked at me and she said, “And you’re part of the problem because you were having a conversation with him.”

It just blew my mind. I’m an individual that is very inclusive, and diversity of thought, diversity of perspectives is part of our backgrounds, part of our experiences. For me when I– I didn’t even get a chance to speak because she threw that bomb and turned around and walked away. I said, “I don’t think I’m part of the problem. I’m actually, I think, part of the healthy solution of engaging in dialogue because again that individual’s perspective about mask and vaccine is a sliver of who they are. I want to understand why.” That’s I think in our workplaces and our community and in our families, I’m seeing relationships just evaporate.

Anthony: We’ve politicized the whole thing. We’ve politicized what it means to think about science and we’ve politicized what it means for everybody to have a choice. I’m vaccinated but I’m not a big medicine person. I don’t like to take a lot of medicine but I took the vaccine, but I don’t fault anybody who doesn’t want to take it for medical reasons, but the problem is we politicize it and we went into this conspiracy theory, all these things and everybody has a different feeling.

There are some people that legitimately don’t want to take it but we’ve taken it to an entirely new level. It just blows my mind that we forgot just how to be rational people when it comes to medicine.

Cedric: I agree.

Anthony: Whatever your feeling is. I don’t know. Cedric, any thoughts from you?

Cedric: It’s interesting. I have a very large family. I have six sisters and four brothers. About 50% of us are vaccinated and I have participated in dialogues with them about the whys and the why nots. I do think it is unfortunate that it has gone to this place of being really politicized.

I think unfortunately the last administration was a large part of that, but one of the things that I’ve learned to try to do is I try to meet people where they are in terms of understanding their whys and why not including some of my brothers and sisters of whom say it’s still experimental, and they really want to wait until the FDA approves it beyond emergency use.

I have to respect that and then I have to do all that I can do to make sure that I’m protected to the degree to which I can whether it’s the mask-wearing and distance, maintaining distance. I think that it’s unfortunate that it’s gotten to this place where it has actually disintegrated many relationships including some of my own people who I thought were friends, because of the position that I took have decided no longer to engage with me.

Anthony: That’s the sad part.

Cedric: I think that my biggest concern has been that we haven’t gotten to the place where we all respect humanity and can come together to do what is necessary to continuously elevate this common shared humanity that we have. I think it’s a sad place that we’re at.

Anthony: It is.

Sarika: Well, that’s been on my mind and it’s not going to go away. I think with any topic, any issue, divergent perspectives are going to exist. I’ve always been about give grace, get grace. That’s the only way that I think we’re going to get to the heart of humanity, Cedric, as you had indicated. Well, I know that we can probably have many episode just on this topic in of itself. We’re here to engage in a dialogue with you Cedric. Anthony, you want to share a little bit about Cedric to our listeners?

Anthony: Absolutely. Let’s tell the audience a little bit about Cedric’s background. Cedric Ellis is the executive vice president and the chief enterprise services officer for CUNA Mutual Group as a global insurance company. Ellis’s accomplishments include designing succession plannings process, HR delivery models, helping rebuild the Fireman’s Fund, New York City office from an HR perspective after 9/11, after the terrorist attack, and serving on the enterprise-wide diversity strategy work team for global insurer, Alliance.

He also is the managing human resource fields for offices and branches employing more than 10,000 people. Ellis graduated from Assumption College and he’s got a bachelor’s degree in English and Social Rehabilitation Services. Welcome, Ellis. We’re glad to have you.

Cedric: Thank you. I appreciate it. Thanks. I’m looking forward to this discussion [crosstalk]

Anthony: Thank you for joining us today. Quite an accomplished life. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Cedric: I grew up in Waterbury, Connecticut. I was born and raised in Waterbury, Connecticut. My parents Edward, who are now deceased, Edward and Ruth Ellis, they actually migrated to Connecticut during the Great Migration from Southern Virginia. They actually migrated to Connecticut in search of a better life. The industrial revolution was taking place. Waterbury, Connecticut was the brass capital of the world and lots of foundries. My father came and got a job in the foundries here.

It’s interesting because they shifted from being sharecroppers. They were sharecroppers in the South and they sought a new life. My mom ended up largely a domestic cleaning folks houses, wealthy folks houses who at that time happened to be mostly white folks. They ended up having 11 kids, all of us included, myself included, and made Connecticut our home.

I’ll tell you this, as one of 11 and one who grew up, and I would still say relative working-class poverty, because both my parents did in fact work but often continued to struggle. As a result of that, we moved around a lot, one. Two, we also ended up landing the last part of my childhood living on public housing, also known as the projects, we call them the PJs. I grew up in public housing. I was fortunate, I guess I’ll say, to have gone to a private high school. I think that private high school actually set a really strong foundation for me in terms of education and my career.

The most critical thing that I would love to add about my upbringing was I had an incredible amount of mentors who really helped me find a way. While my parents were, one, not able to read because neither of them could read, they still saw the value in education, they still pushed every single one of us to at least finish high school.

I owe a great deal of gratitude to them just for showing me really strong and deep work ethic. They also showed me value to how to treat people. You spoke of being graceful with folks. I think that was the core of how my parents raised all of us. That actually has been a lot of my guiding principle in terms of how I live life today, how I work, how I interact with people. That’s pretty much how I look at things.

Anthony: Glad to hear that. As we’re thinking about that, that leads right into our next question because I wanted to know what were some milestones in your life or some things that happened around your upbringing, around equity, diversity, inclusion, and engagement that really made you value it? Was there a particular moment in your life, was there a particular incident where you realize, “I’ve got to be a champion of equity or diversity. I know I’m different.” Can you talk?

Cedric: I’ll answer this question in a couple of ways. I’ll answer it first by talking about what I think was really pivotal for me as a kid. During the mid-’60s or early ’70s when I was a kid, a lot of the public school systems were really hellbent on desegregation, if you will, and integration.

I was a product of busing. I lived in a predominantly black neighborhood, I was bused from my neighborhood 30 minutes to predominantly white schools, and really saw the– Going from a neighborhood school where I could walk to, to being bused to more affluent neighborhood, I immediately saw disparities in terms of how money and race played out particularly in public education.

We’re all still governed by the same system, depending upon where your school was, you got different things. You got access to different things. I will tell you, yes, I’ve benefited from having been bused. The quality of education, the quality of the facilities, the quality of things that you have access to was significantly different than the neighborhood school that I used to go to.

I saw some differences and I would say that they had some imprint on how I looked at inequity and accessibility because it started to really push me to ask questions like, “Why?

Why is this this way? Why don’t we have the same things in my neighborhood?” I started to see some of that pretty early on and then having gone to the private schools from the projects, which was predominantly white, I went to, I think there were maybe 15 other Black students at that school. Just seeing those inequities in terms of economics also left an impression on me.

I would say this, that when I first started working professionally, I wanted to be a teacher because I thought that education was the great equalizer and access to education was also pretty important for folks if you were going to continue to progress in society. I became a teacher. I will tell you I was not a good teacher.

The thing I learned about being a teacher was it wasn’t necessarily the students. I was a high school English teacher. The biggest challenges that I had were with parents, parents who didn’t like the fact that you gave their kid a C.

That was a bigger challenge so I left teaching and joined the corporate world and went to go work for Aetna, the insurance company, and there got, I would say head first, drinking from a fire hose, really indoctrinated into, what this world at that time, affirmative action, because I started in human resources, got really deep into affirmative action. At the time, Aetna was a government contractor so they had to abide by certain affirmative action rules. I was responsible for helping implement those rules within the company.

Immediately start to see the impact of the policy, the impact of even actions and norms within an organization really set people apart. Typically race, gender, you name it, those things had some impact in the work environment.

It really began to shape how I thought about and how I looked at things related to equity. At the time, we didn’t have that word. It was all about, “How do we make the world more multicultural? How do we make our company more multicultural?”

I think the terminologies being used today, I think it’s more helpful because I think it makes it more comfortable for white folks because it’s less in your face and it is in fact more inclusive because I think in the past, most white people didn’t necessarily see, and still some today, diversity as them. If you think about what diversity really is, is about everyone, so diversity is all of us. It’s not just the them, it’s us.

Sarika: Absolutely. You’re absolutely right. We always say diversity is differences and the diversity pendulum has swung so far to one extreme that individuals, even individuals that are part of the white community can’t connect and resonate because for so long, it felt as if they couldn’t be part of that conversation just because of how the word diversity was used or et cetera.

We’re here to bring the diversity pendulum back into balance and say, “Diversity is differences, how do you leverage diversity as an asset with equity, inclusion, and engagement to really drive innovation?”

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Voice-over 2: Alliant Energy is a place where I can create the future, where my skills, creativity, and new ideas make a better tomorrow. I help deliver the energy powering moments that matter to you. It’s where we care about the environment and our neighbors, a place where my talents and skills grow. My job isn’t a job, it’s my passion, my place, my purpose because I am energy. See how you can put your energy to work at alliantenergy.com/careers.

Sarika: Speaking of Corporate America and your work in there, I want to pivot a little bit. CUNA has taken positions on social movements such as your statements on social justice, as well as CUNA as being a founding member of the Credit Union’s DEI collective in which all of you have adopted the statement of commitment and solidarity for the Black and African American community.

I wanted to share this context with the listeners because what we are seeing from our clients is that increasingly companies are really assessing their corporate social responsibility and with all the social movements out there, they’re trying to figure out how many statements do we adopt, do we just pick a few? If we only pick a few, is it inclusive enough or where do we draw the line or do we stay neutral and take the stance that this should not be a workplace concern as it is socially and or politically related?

Cedric: It’s been interesting. One of the things that I’ve been really trying hard to do at CUNA Mutual is really talk through what at the core is our purpose. Our purpose really is about helping individuals create financial security no matter where they stand and no matter what that definition is to them. That’s color blind, it’s gender blind. It should be open to all no matter where you stand or sit in life.

I think that it’s important and so I’ve always thought that it was important for us to really think about what our core is, what our core mission is, or our core vision is. If we’re really honoring our core mission, vision, you’re knocking down all those obstacles that might exist for different segments of our population.

One of the things that we’ve been trying to do at CUNA Mutual is to – silence is not an option. If you’re really engaged in providing those solutions to people who need them, then you have to know or be informed around what’s important to folks no matter where they sit. You also have to understand history, you also have to understand really how can we bring to bear solutions that actually are helpful?

Sometimes that means taking a stand, taking a position, whether it’s around our social justice statement, whether it’s engaging with the credit union movement to really set up diversity, equity and inclusion, and engagement as really core to what we do and how we carry out our individual missions.

I’ve been trying to push the company to really be honorable and engaged around helping create change across the movement but also being well steeped in equity and accessibility. That’s what’s been largely about– I can speak about it from my own personal position, and I think that what’s been most helpful for the organization because you can’t author somebody who’s looking right in front of, you can’t author somebody who’s sitting right in front of you.

I think that my organization has really embraced. Now I’ll tell you we have battles as well. We also have that contrarian voice within our organization, whether someone is voicing something through, we have a “Speak Freely Line”, which you can do stuff anonymously.

We do hear some blowback and we often on through social media, whether it’s LinkedIn or other places, we see some of that contrarian voice and folks who typically might feel threatened by our positions or even the focus on diversity, equity and inclusion have voice concern, but we’re steadfast and very well-grounded in our purpose. We understand that what we have to do in terms of being engaged in part of the change and not necessarily being on the sidelines, we have to engage. That’s why we did what we’re doing.

Anthony: I think that’s great. You’ve taken a position as an organization and you’ve got collective buy-in and understanding that there will be some contrarians and that’s part of dealing with this journey.

Sarika: I think part of it is that sometimes organizations are going to have to re-examine their value system. They may no longer work and so they’re going to have to start there so that they really know what is driving their purposes, look at their value system.

Anthony: Cedric, talking about you. When is the last time that you’ve had to check your own bias? Maybe in your personal life or your business. Can you think about when you’ve had to check Cedric and how did you manage through that to not have a negative interaction or experience in that situation?

Cedric: I’ll share a couple of things. The first thing I’ll share is this, one of the things that my own bias steeped in because I’m an ablest and I think I sometimes look at folks who are differently-abled as needing help. One, I’ve been checked on that with some of my own employees. Two, I started to take a look at some of our own statements and some of our own policies.

I had an employee who called me on, “You know our statements don’t have an equity component around disability.” I went back and looked at our policies, our social justice statement I looked at, and she was absolutely right. Some of that, I have to totally own my blinders because it was vacant for me. I didn’t even see it. I had to bring those things back to the organization.

We did make some changes where we are very intentional about including differently-abled individuals and thinking about disability and putting it being really clear and upfront about our statements. Some of my job is I’m responsible for the organization’s real estate around the country and part of that has been making sure that you have someone at the table who can actually tell you, one, is this workable? Is this not workable?

We built, just as an example, we built the new lobby at our building in Madison, Wisconsin. We did not even think about accessibility other than what was written in code. We had an employee in a wheelchair who come to our building, brought to our attention the way the doors were set up to open made it impossible for him to use this entrance.

Now, we, one, have since changed some of those things in the construction of a new building which we’re doing right now. We’re being really mindful and thoughtful about making sure that we’re honoring stuff around making sure that it’s truly accessible and it doesn’t create these impediments for folks who might be differently abled.

That’s been part of my own bias in terms of how it’s showing up at work and I will tell you this, that it has absolutely highlighted the need for us to be more thoughtful around including folks with disabilities, folks who are differently-abled. I think that it’s been mindful now because now when I’m looking around the room to see who’s there, I want to make sure that it’s not just us being thoughtful about it but we actually have someone that actually engage.

Sarika: We know we can continue to engage in many topics with you Cedric and now we’re going to move on to the next segment of our show.

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Voice-over 4: What’s on our listeners’ minds?

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Sarika: We do have a listener question for our guest executive today, and Anthony, you want to read the listener question to Cedric?

Anthony: This is again just a random question. It’s Sarah from Minnesota. Sarah says, “I’m the GM of a tool and die manufacturing company of about 300 people in Minneapolis. I recently learned that one of our employees is a member of the LGBTQ community and he plans to come out soon.

I’m really glad he is doing this and I fully support him because it’s absolutely the right thing to do. However, do you have any advice for how to avoid or manage through the potential backlash? I imagine there’ll be some staff members who do not wish to support this position, thank you.” That’s from Sarah in Minnesota.

Sarika: Great question, Sarah, thank you for submitting it. Cedric, the stage is yours.

Cedric: That’s a great question. In fact, it’s interesting at CUNA Mutual, while we have a number of employee resource groups, employee engagement groups, I would say this, that part of the challenge for us, we also have an LGBTQ+ employee engagement group. Part of the challenge has been making sure that folks don’t feel discriminated against, threatened, or even created a hostile work environment by employees who may feel uncomfortable about individuals coming out from the sexual orientation perspective.

I think it’s important that we do all we can do to try to educate and sharing information with the broad employee population because I think that too often, folks focus on the sexual part of if somebody’s gay when if you’re heterosexual, folks don’t necessarily focus on that. I think that bringing to bear some education about what’s appropriate about even some information that shares about the LGBTQ community is really important in terms of sharing with the employee population.

We’ve done similar things at CUNA Mutual in terms of making sure that we try to educate, and expose, and bring awareness to our employee population, but also we’re really clear about what we expect from our employees in terms of conduct and behavior. We have a zero-tolerance policy with respect to harassment, with respect to bad treatment and I think that most organizations need to embrace such a policy as well because I think it sets a tone for what inclusion really is.

Sarika: Listeners, continue to submit your question and comments to info@diversitystraightup.com. We’re going to move on to another piece of this segment which is our diversity thumb ball. I don’t know Cedric if you’ve ever seen a diversity thumb ball. It has all these questions, prompts on it that if you were here in the studio, we would just throw the ball at you and wherever your thumb lands, you would have to read the question prompt and just authentically answer it.

We’ve done this a lot with our clients as icebreakers and they enjoy it so we’re going to do this here as well. What I’m going to do is I’ll throw it to Anthony first and that’s going to be your question, okay?

Cedric: Great.

Anthony: Hope I get a good one for you, Cedric.

Cedric: Great, thanks.

Anthony: Your question is, describe a time when you witnessed bias or discrimination in your life.

Cedric: That’s pretty easy. Often, we participate in leadership discussions around talent. I often hear things, in terms of behaviors, that are described by people. Typically, it’s gender bias that shows up. You can describe the same behavior from a woman, the same behavior from men, and I’ve seen how bias plays out. Same behavior, perfectly acceptable for a man, not necessarily acceptable for a woman.

I’ve had to call that stuff out and be really clear. I’m sure we will look at this differently, have this person then pick the gender. I’ve had to be really clear, especially in those leadership talent discussions because it is about who’s going to lead the company next. I want to make sure that we can weed out all bias as possible getting the right person in the right job at the right time.

Anthony: Good deal. We’re going to play with you. I’m going to throw this to Sarika, I should throw it hard.

[laughter]

Sarika: When did you first become aware of racial or ethnic differences? I was born in India, Gujarat, India, came to the States as 19 months old. One of our first communities that we lived in was San Francisco Bay area. I was too small at that time to even notice anything. Then we moved to Oklahoma and Nebraska. I think it was when I was in school and I noticed around me how everybody had a different skin color than me.

I was much darker than them and I was the only Indian in that school district. I think I was the only person of a different racial-ethnic background than the rest of them as they were white. I think from a visible perspective, that was the first time that I realized that I look different.

Anthony: Alright, my turn. How do your thoughts about diversity differ from your parents? Well, that’s a tough one because they don’t diverge too much from my parents, but I will say as I think about my dad, I will say this may not be the way my dad feels today but I know what my dad was like in the ’70s. My dad was a pretty radical guy.

I would say he was a pretty radical activist. My uncles, and a lot of my family were pretty radical activists. I would say that I’m not as radical. I think I have a little bit of my dad in me. I think I’m a vocal activist but I will say I probably was not as radical as my dad was at this age. Maybe I’m a little calmer than he is, a little more patient.

Sarika: Well, thank you so much for sharing your thoughts. Anthony and Cedric, with the diversity thumb ball. Is there any advice that you can give to leaders at all levels who are working on their equity, diversity, inclusion, and engagement? What advice would you give them to help move them along?

Cedric: One of the things that I’ve been really critical about even myself is doing my own work around getting to understand my own bias, my own perspective, and helping better educate myself around diversity, equity and inclusion because it’s a journey. I think that folks really need to grapple with their own stuff first because I don’t think you can do a genuine, authentic job at being inclusive unless you know your stuff or at least be open to the possibility that you might be biased. I think that the thing that I’ve always tried to talk to leaders about is doing your own work.

Moving along that journey around understanding diversity, equity, and inclusion, and doing what you need to do to show up right, to show up in a way in which is inclusive, and to do all that you can do to be a good champion at knocking down barriers to inclusion. That’s what I would say for advice.

Sarika: Thank you, Cedric. I’m a firm believer in this journey. You are the common denominator to yourself, to your workplace, and your community. Before you start figuring out how to do it in the workplace, we’ve got to start with ourself first. Thank you so much. Thank you so much for joining us today on Diversity Straight Up. We enjoyed having you as a guest executive.

Cedric: Great, thanks. I really appreciate the invite. Thank you so much.

Anthony: As we conclude our show, shout out to our sponsors, GreenState Credit Union, along with Alliant Energy, the city of Cedar Rapids, and Collins Aerospace. We really thank you for your sponsorship.

Sarika: Thank you to our listeners. Please continue to subscribe to our show. Follow us, like us, and submit questions to us at info@diversitystraightup.com. Without you, we wouldn’t have this show as well as our sponsors without your support. Thank you. As we always say on Diversity Straight Up-

Anthony: -keeping it real.

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Sarika: Thank you to our listeners as we wouldn’t be here without your support. Help us grow our subscriber base by sharing our show with others.

Anthony: Love this new episode of Diversity Straight Up brought to you by GreenState Credit Union? Then head over to the most popular podcast audio platform to describe, rate, and review us and check out our other episodes while you’re there.

Sarika: Catch us on our next episode which drops monthly.

Anthony: We’d love to hear from you. Hit us up and send your questions, comments, and suggestions to info@diversitystraightup.com.

Sarika: Remember, wherever you live, work, and play, our backyards are increasingly global. It’s not enough to simply be a leader. Be a global leader by leveraging diversity with equity, inclusion, and engagement and share your journey. This may empower others to be bold change agents. Be courageous, be authentic, be vulnerable.

Anthony: Diversity Straight Up, brought to you by GreenState Credit Union.

Sarika: Keeping it real.

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Voice-over 5: You’ve been listening to Diversity Straight Up brought to you by GreenState Credit Union. Additional support provided by Alliant Energy, Collins Aerospace, and the city of Cedar Rapids. For more from the Corridor Business Journal, please visit corridorbusiness.com. This episode was produced by Joe Coffey of Coffey Grande Studios.