The Bozzuto Buzz is about more than relaying news or sharing acts of kindness. It’s about coming together and connecting as a community—sharing our stories and using our voices to express the triumphs and challenges we face. In this issue, we come together to discuss meaningful topics that are top of mind for many of our colleagues, friends, families and neighbors. If you would like to submit your story for consideration in a future Buzz issue, please use the form here.
Read These Stories
An Introduction by BMC President Stephanie Williams Employee Resource Groups at Bozzuto Introducing LIFT: Our New LGBTQ+ ERG Celebrating Juneteenth: Join Us Tomorrow Action Items from President and CEO Toby Bozzuto
Celebrating Diversity, Striving for Equity
After a few weeks of emotional yet inspiring, thought-provoking and hopeful conversations with many of you, one thing is clear, we are truly united as One Bozzuto. As you heard from Toby this afternoon, Bozzuto continues to cultivate a culture of kindness and equity.
Our company has a longstanding commitment to standing up for what is right. Admittedly, we can do more—and we will. As Toby said, this is an important moment in our history. Now is the time for more action.
Despite the unrest and uncertainty around us, I am inspired by the many ways in which we are celebrating the rich diversity that makes our company extraordinary. This month, we celebrate Pride and Juneteenth, which represent freedom to be your truest authentic self, freedom from slavery and the freedom to enjoy equal opportunity in pursuit of your dreams.
We will go forth with resolve to create sanctuary for one another and for those we serve—one empathetic action at a time. We will listen deeply so that we may better understand the experiences that shape each of us as individuals; we will unite widely to build trust and allyships that will make us stronger, connected and effectual; and we will act boldly in support of progress for those who have been left behind and pursue justice and equal treatment for all humanity.
Just think, we have the power to write our own story—it’s our shared story. One that opens minds, changes hearts and inspires action. This will be our legacy.
Finding Sanctuary in the Workplace: Employee Resource Groups at Bozzuto
You know the feeling when you’re with a certain group of people and feel completely comfortable, completely yourself? We each find social belonging in a variety of environments, and Bozzuto believes the workplace should not be an exception. As a company that deeply values our employees’ diverse perspectives and experiences, Bozzuto understands the importance of cultivating a culture where you, our valued employees, don’t have to think twice about bringing your whole self to work each day.
While we see progress in some ways, there are critical actions we are taking within our own company to continuously strengthen our awareness of each other’s perspectives and embrace each other’s authenticity—Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are essential for advancing this action.
ERGs are internal platforms led by like-minded employees who come together based on shared cultures, heritages or other significant bonds. These groups exist as a way for employees of similar backgrounds to connect and feel at home, while also extending meaningful opportunities of education, engagement, empowerment and charitable opportunity to the entire Bozzuto employee base.
Previously, geographical location appeared to pose a challenge for ERGs, but today we have quickly seen the power of virtual connection, unveiling incredible opportunities for engagement. Bozzuto’s current ERGs include:
- LIFT – LGBTQ+ Individuals and Friends Together; expresses individual authenticity and a culture of belonging
- VIDA – Promotes awareness and understanding of Latino/Hispanic culture
- SOUL – Shades Of Unified Leadership; brings together Blacks/Africans/African Americans to champion workplace diversity and make a positive impact in the community
- VETS – Veterans Empowered to Succeed; strengthens recruiting and retention of service members and their families
- Women@Bozzuto – Aims to support and inspire the women of Bozzuto in their determined drive to excel, both personally and professionally
- Young Professionals – Engages young professionals through connection, development, inclusion and empowerment
Even if you don’t strictly identify with one of these groups, your participation as an ally and advocate is encouraged and valued. Click here to visit our ERG homepage on Teleskope.
Introducing LIFT, Our New LGTBQ+ ERG
In honor of Pride Month, we are thrilled to introduce Bozzuto’s newest employee resource group, LIFT—LGBTQ+ Individuals and Friends Together. Led by nine passionate and energetic Bozzuto employees who are allies and members of the LGBTQ+ community, LIFT serves to foster an inclusive environment within Bozzuto that embraces employees as their whole selves—regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or expression. Members cultivate acceptance through education, engagement and empowerment in support of the LGBTQ+ community and allies.
As we continue to celebrate each other’s individual authenticity, especially during Pride Month, we invite you to learn first-hand perspectives from several of LIFT’s founding members. In sharing the moments of fearless expression, rash prejudice and fierce perseverance, the leaders of LIFT hope to inspire the entire Bozzuto community to appreciate each other’s individuality and honor inclusivity. Read their stories here.
If you are interested in learning more about LIFT or how to become a member, please email LIFT@bozzuto.com.
Celebrating Juneteenth: Join Us Tomorrow
On Friday, June 19, we will come together to celebrate Juneteenth, an annual holiday that commemorates the end of slavery in the U.S. On June 19, 1865, two years after President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, enslaved people in Galveston, Texas learned from Union Soldiers that they were free. Since then, Juneteenth has been celebrated with activities such as barbecues and festivals—with a special emphasis on education. Not only does Juneteenth act as an opportunity to celebrate freedom but also a reminder to speak out about injustices that still exist today. Learn more about the history of Juneteenth here.
To celebrate Juneteenth this Friday, Bozzuto Management Company President Stephanie Williams will moderate a discussion focused on African American history with Leslie M. Harris, Ph.D., an esteemed author and professor at Northwestern University whose expertise has been featured on MSNBC and numerous publications.
To show solidarity for Black-owned businesses, we invite you to order lunch from Black-owned restaurants in your region and enjoy during our virtual celebration. Not sure where to order? Find a restaurant near you by clicking here.
It’s Time for Action
“This is an important moment in our history. This is a turning point, now is the time for action.” President and CEO Toby Bozzuto shared actions that we can—and will—take as a company to promote a workplace of inclusivity. Read his email here.