2020 Year in Review
PIOW Newsletter | January 07, 2021


The Pride in Our Workplace team is excited to welcome you to our first newsletter!

Our mission as an organization is to provide LGBTQ+ professionals with ways to amplify their voices and drive positive change in their work. Last year, we gathered DEI executives, HR professionals, and ERG representatives to share best practices in leadership, center LGBTQ+ perspectives on timely issues, and build a capacity for growth and understanding within the organizations we serve.

We are incredibly proud of the work we were able to accomplish together. Please join us in taking a look back at PIOW's 2020 Year in Review.
Advancing LGBTQ+ Inclusive Leadership
We approached 2020 with the goal of increasing inclusive leadership and advocating for more equitable workplaces. Our February panel at Ropes & Gray provided attendees with strategies to advocate for themselves and LGBTQ+ community members at work while sharing insight into the personal experiences of juggling identities' intersections with privilege, mental health, and race.
Panel Participants (pictured left to right): Mason Dunn, Gavin Alexander, Kellie Tiller, Bryan Vermes, Emma Callahan
This event was held in partnership with the Massachusetts LGBT Chamber of Commerce before quarantine restrictions were put in place.
In the months following the COVID-19 outbreak, we hosted two digital roundtables with partners to learn how we could best serve LGBTQ+ employees. These conversations reaffirmed the need for virtual DEI programming and inspired us to host events that celebrate and connect our community while holding space to address societal inequities at the forefront of national conversations.
A Shift to Online Programming
While this past year presented many challenges, it inspired our team to get creative and find new ways to move our traditional programming online. We were able to stream three online panels, each in direct response to events going on in the shifting world around us.
Panelists: Grace Moreno, Janson Wu, Rebecca Rosen, Ruben Hopwood
May 20, 2020 | Leading in Times of Crisis
DEI leaders discussed how the pandemic has affected LGBTQ+ individuals in their personal and professional lives. Together, we identified strategies to respond to the current strain on employee mental health, ways to celebrate pride virtually, and how to best support LGBTQ-owned small businesses.
June 30, 2020 | The Intersection of LGBTQ+ Equality and Racial Justice Part 1
June panelists reflected upon our community’s relationship to the BLM movement and recommended ways organizations can acknowledge the experiences of affected individuals internally and publicly. The panel suggested that companies create opportunities for dialogue surrounding recent events and their intersections with racial equity; recognize that Black women, queer, and transgender people can be impacted by these challenges disproportionately; and ensure transparency around progress on company anti-racism and diversity and inclusion efforts.
Panelists: Gary Bailey, Jamie Bergeron, Stephen Chan, Tre’Andre Valentine

Panelists: Jonathan Allen, Paul Francisco, Sunnie Kaufmann-Paulman, Wendy John
October 13, 2020 | The Intersection of LGBTQ+ Equality and Racial Justice Part 2
Continuing conversations from our summer programming, October panelists shared their approaches to addressing racial equity at work and the degree to which implemented changes have been effective. From the adoption of shared initiatives by existing ERGs to prioritizing the recruitment of BIPOC and QTPOC employees, panelists emphasized that progress in DEI can be made at all levels of a company through collaboration and allyship.
Sharing Best Practices and Resources
We collaborated with event panelists to create resource guides addressing pandemic stressors and coping mechanisms, anti-racism best practices, and ways to support local community organizations. Click the images below to revisit, download, and share these resources.
Employer Anti-Racism Best Practices
Resource Guide to Self-Care and Employee Support from Hopwood Counseling and Consulting
Leading in Times of Crisis: Participants and Resources
2020 Board of Directors and Volunteers
Our organization would be nothing without the passion and dedication of our board members and volunteers. PIOW Board Members bring years of lived and professional experience to their roles within our organization, and we are incredibly grateful. Thank you to the following individuals for volunteering your time and leadership to help us adapt and grow our organization:

Andy Huang, Ashley Hackett, Colleen Simonelli, Dimitri Makris, John Basile, Karen Young, Matthew McTygue, Michael Meidinger, Tori Kaufmann-Paulman, and Wendell K. Chestnut
PIOW Sponsors
Founding Partners
We would like to thank our sponsors for joining us in championing LGBTQ+ diversity, equity, and inclusion. Your contribution makes our work possible and we appreciate your support.

If you would like to learn more about the benefits of sponsorship and how your organization can help create more equitable workplaces, please contact membership@piow.org.
Our team is ready to keep this momentum going and facilitate meaningful connections and discussions this year. Our first event of the season is just around the corner and we will be sending out event details soon!

To hear more about what we have planned for 2021, keep an eye out for PIOW event invites and newsletters in your inbox. Stay connected by following us on Facebook and LinkedIn.

Cheers to a new year. We can't wait to see you at our next event.

Warmly Yours,

The PIOW Team
Pride in Our Workplace (PIOW) is a Massachusetts nonprofit and a 501(c)(3) organization comprised of LGBTQ professionals and allies from industry-leading companies in New England.
Learn more at www.piow.org.