Asian Pacific Americans comprise the fastest growing demographic in the United States and will increase another 150% by 2050. As they become a greater percentage of the US workforce, it is crucial that we understand the unique challenges APA employees face. Unlike other underrepresented groups, APAs don’t face challenges to professional entry, but rather to professional advancement. For example, in the Bay Area, Asians are the largest racial cohort in the professional workforce (47%) but are not proportionally represented in management: one of every 12 white men and one of every 28 white women in the professional workforce is an executive, yet only one of every 30 Asian American men and one of every 64 Asian American women have reached that level. There needs to be a concerted and thoughtful effort to correct this discrepancy, which includes creating pipelines, supporting mentorship, and nurturing Employee Resource Groups (ERGs).
To fill this critical knowledge gap on the growth, development, and advancement of APA employees, Asia Society created the Asian Pacific Americans Corporate Survey in 2010 to investigate what makes a favorable working experience for APA employees. The Diversity Leadership Forum (DLF) highlights the findings of the Survey and provides a vital platform for businesses and APA professionals to discuss critical corporate diversity issues. To address the West Coast’s unique diversity challenges, Asia Society Northern California (ASNC) launched the West Coast Diversity Leadership Forum in 2016.
ASNC aims to:
• Determine and highlight best practices for recruitment, retention, and promotion
• Linking key stakeholders: APA employees, D&I leaders, hiring managers, and leadership experts
• Be a content resource for companies, employees, and D&I leaders
The 2017 Diversity Leadership Forum is the cornerstone of our diversity initiative, and serves to both connect key stakeholders and highlight best practices. The full-day conference will launch the report and feature keynotes, panel discussions, and breakout sessions as well as a private dinner for executive-level participants. Many of the panels and breakout sessions will address various aspects of Employee Resource Groups and will draw heavily from the report and discussions at the bootcamps, as well as feature speakers who presented at or attended the bootcamps. The event targets mid-level through C-suite employees of major West Coast companies with a focus on technology firms. We are pleased to launch our “crowd-sourced” guide for Employee Resource Groups.
DLF WEST ADVISORY COUNCIL
Buck Gee, Silicon Valley Community Foundation
Anna Mok, Deloitte
Linda Akutagawa, LEAP
Darlene Chiu Bryant, China SF
Sydnie Kohara, Media Consultant
Elizabeth Hsieh, McKesson
Annabel Chang, Alaska Airlines
Les Wong, San Francisco State University
Lorna Randlett, Leaders Forum
Bo Lee, BNY Mellon
Wendy Soone-Broder, The Asia Foundation