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New York Urban League Honors Champions of Diversity
8th Annual Awards Breakfast Lauds Adecco Group North America, Interpublic Group, Johnson & Johnson, Macy’s, Inc.
New York, NY (February 10, 2011) – The New York Urban League honored four New York City-area corporations for their commitment to diversity at its 8th Annual Champions of Diversity Awards breakfast that took place Monday at The Four Seasons Restaurant in Manhattan.
"I must applaud this year's award recipients for upholding diversity as a fundamental tenet of their corporate philosophy," observed NYUL President and CEO Arva R. Rice. “As you have already discovered, diverse workplaces produce more dynamic corporations better capable of serving a more global clientele in an ever-changing marketplace. Our nation's competitiveness in the 21st century depends upon it."
Honorees included: Adecco Group North America, Interpublic Group, Johnson & Johnson and Macy’s, Inc. To be considered for the awards, applicants had to illustrate their diversity commitment in four major areas — corporate leadership, employment policy, supplier relations and corporate giving.
“I am a true believer that diversity is not only a concept to talk about … but that it works,” said former N.J. Gov. and Sen. Jon S. Corzine, the event’s keynote speaker.
In 2004, the NYUL established the Champions of Diversity awards ceremony, inspired by corporate America’s outpouring of support for the 2003 U.S. Supreme Court decision that upheld the basic principles of affirmative action.
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The New York Urban League was founded by a group of prominent New Yorkers concerned with the poor state of blacks migrating to New York City from the south. From its inception it provided employment and connections for migrating blacks bridging the adjustment from the agricultural/rural life to the industrial urban center. Each decade following, “The League” provided critical services such as emergency aid for the unemployed during the Great Depression; formed the Committee for Interracial Voluntary Hospitals to provide care and work in local hospitals; negotiated the opening of employment for blacks in the airline, brewing, and baking industries; created “Street Academies” which became a national model for high school students; published the first State of Black New York report; and created its signature events including Frederick Douglass Dinner, Whitney M. Young Jr. Classic, and Champion of Diversity Breakfast among many other milestones.
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