Over the past weeks, we have seen the power of people banding together to bring about change. The current spotlight on systems of racism and injustice have made us all reflect on what we can do to take action against racism.
One way the event industry can step up is by bringing in more black keynote speakers and panelists. In her Harvard Business Review article, What It Will Take to Improve Diversity at Conferences, author Ruchika Tulshyan noted,
“There has been lots of talk in the past few years about all-male panels, fondly dubbed ‘manels,’ and why they are problematic. One study found 69% of professional speakers globally are male. However, less attention has been paid to how too many events also lack racial diversity. We know diversity in teams unlocks innovation and makes us smarter. So I’m routinely surprised at the reluctance of conference organizers to prioritize this.”
Prioritize is the key word. It’s easy to fall back on a list of familiar presenters. But in every field, there are minority speakers that may be a stronger choice to share their expertise with your audience. Just take a look at the Black is Tech Conference, AfroBiotech, and Black Writers on Tour.
Below you’ll see a list of 20 outstanding speakers from Cramer’s database who represent a wide range of expertise, perspectives, and experiences. That’s just a hint of the myriad of talent out there. It is necessary to have a diverse, inclusive roster at every type of conference. To move forward, we need to take a stand. Equality on stage is an action we in the event industry are uniquely positioned to make.
At Cramer, we have made a commitment to promoting diversity at events and always providing our clients with inclusive speaker and talent options. Please join us in doing what’s right. We have a literal platform to amplify the voices of people of color.