Posted: March 29th, 2022
NRMC Going Beyond Black History Month Activities
The ongoing awareness training that has been part of the annual Black History Month activities has resulted in further growth of NRMC’s diversity and inclusion focus. Special thanks to Mayor Ronnie Williams who spoke to the NRMC Leadership team as part of the 2022 Black History Month Lecture Series and Dr. Marcus Jones, President of Northwestern State University, who was the Guest Lecturer at an NRMC Lunch and Learn in February. Their conversations have helped reinforce and focus the leadership group’s resolve.
“One of the goals of the presentations and discussions was to help the NRMC leadership team better understand the important role we each play in ensuring that our organizational culture consciously embraces diversity and inclusion and ensures strong career paths and leadership opportunities for all Associates,” noted Kirk Soileau, NRMC Chief Executive Officer. “We are now going beyond our Black History Month events to ensure that this is a year-round focus for our organization and central to our leadership development programs.”
Mayor Williams who grew up in Natchitoches Parish shared how his love of U.S. history and civics lead him to become a social studies teacher and then inspired him to be a unity maker in his community. Sparked by the events of 9/11, the Mayor noted his determination to serve his community which eventually led him to run for mayor. He spoke in detail about unconscious bias and its impact on decision making. His interactive and thought-provoking presentation helped the NRMC leadership team gain awareness and insight.
Dr. Jones who grew up in Winn Parish shared his childhood experiences, his belief in education, and his career journey to becoming the President of NSU. He described the subtle messages that people from disadvantaged backgrounds tell themselves regarding their ability to lead and be a leader. He noted the importance of being intentional in helping people set and reach goals. His comments helped the leadership team better understand the importance of establishing opportunities that foster leadership development while embracing the strength of diversity.
“I want to express our appreciation and thanks to our speakers for making this year’s Lunch and Learn and Lecture Series such a success,” explained Soileau. “Both Mayor Williams and Dr. Jones are an inspiration to all of us and define what it means to lead. We appreciate them sharing their experiences and perspectives on inclusion and the strengths of diversity with our team so that we can – individually and collectively – continue to grow an extraordinary culture here at NRMC.”