A Message from Our CEO on Systemic Racial Injustice

A Message from Our CEO on Systemic Racial Injustice

Like most of humanity, I am shocked and saddened by the recent race-related violence that’s been taking place across the U.S., which has resulted in protests and riots that have swept the nation and, in fact, the world. The last few weeks have been incredibly painful for the black and brown communities, including members of our Ketchum family.

At Ketchum we aspire to build our culture around a shared sense of belonging, where every one of us feels heard, respected and included. And yet these recent events remind us that as racism and intolerance continue to plague our world, it is incumbent upon all of us to condemn acts of hatred and violence toward marginalized communities – now and always.

As a firm we’ve made strides in our DE&I efforts, but we have much more work to do. In the face of these tragic events, Ketchum cannot stay silent. We must work in solidarity with the black community – not as a political act but as an act of humanity. Hatred has no home here.

Today Ketchum is making a firm and unambiguous commitment, expressed by immediate actions, to be a more empathetic, educated and engaged organization:

  • We commit to empathy and open, honest conversation by hosting a dialogue series on systemic racism.
  • We commit to educating ourselves through learning platforms, educational materials and by listening to and engaging with marginalized communities around us.
  • We commit to engaging our voices and our resources to help make a difference, and we will do so through employee donations to Color of Change, Black Lives Matter, The Gathering for Justice and the NAACP (with a collective company match up to $10K), and a U.S. marketplace day of action on Juneteenth, a date of historical significance to many African-Americans. We’re also evaluating ways to act in solidarity against racism globally.

Our four values – Curious, Brave, Inspiring and A Force for Good – reflect our people’s unique combination of inquisitiveness, courage, natural leadership and desire to always do the right thing. It is within each of us at Ketchum to question what we see when we know it is wrong. It’s within each of us to speak up and do something about it. And it’s within each of us to rally others to join that fight.

Together we will serve as A Force for Good by linking arms in an unwavering condemnation of racism. And together we will use our voices and influence to be engaged allies for our black and brown communities and fight against injustice.

Barri Rafferty

Partner, President and CEO