Dorrier Underwood stands for love, peace and understanding as the most true and natural expressions of human beings.
We also stand for coming together to confront white America’s ignorance, denial and complicity in creating systemic barriers to this true and natural expression for people of color in this country.
Black Lives Matter, profoundly. The quality of Black lives matters, and the fulfillment, freedom and potential of Black lives matter.
We recognize the fundamental hypocrisy of our all-white organization making this statement. After all, if we hold these beliefs so strongly, why are we stating them only now, when it’s suddenly socially acceptable?
It is actually demanded of us to take this public stand, by our conscience and by the future we are committed to creating. This is a time of national reckoning, and we begin by reckoning with ourselves.
As recovering (and still ignorant) passive white people, and as human beings who are open and learning and waking-up, we are seeing new layers of racial inequity. We are sitting up straight, having hard conversations, and creating new ways to be in action. Our first and biggest charge is to reach into the depths of our own inauthenticity and lack of integrity about race and to acknowledge our role in keeping things the way they have been.
In 32 years of bringing transformational leadership to organizations and teams around the world, we can say a few things with confidence:
- Human beings created the systems that we have. And human beings have the power to transform themselves such that organizations and systems reflect that transformation.
- That power to transform ourselves is only going to make a sustained difference if it does, in fact, result in impacting the systems in which we live and operate.
- Ultimately, what makes the decisive difference is commitment-driven action. An impassioned missive devoid of meaningful, impactful follow-up steps won’t, on its own, have anything new happen in the world.
To that end, this statement is only a beginning. In the coming weeks and months, we will be sharing the actions we are taking and are planning as we push ourselves to have our actions match our words. We see that our silence has been part of the problem, and we commit to speaking and acting to change the world, with you.
Dorrier Underwood, June 11, 2020