Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Initiative
HeartLands Conservancy has, over the last four years, been placing greater emphasis on equity, diversity, and inclusion. In 2017, the Board of Directors adopted a strategic plan with a new organizational value of diversity and inclusion. Since that time, the organization has improved gender, professional, and geographic diversity of the board and staff. However, the organization has struggled to increase the racial diversity on our board and staff, as well as within our general programs.
In 2020, the board and staff reviewed the organization’s priorities and recognized that progress toward our goals of achieving better racial equity, diversity, and inclusion were moving too slowly. As a result, the board of directors published a commitment to moving the mission forward with greater emphasis and urgency to address racial and environmental justice. This JEDI initiative is one of steps on our journey.
In late 2021, the organization intends to create a new strategic plan and re-evaluate all programs, initiatives, partnership structures, financing strategies, and our business model. We believe it is imperative to begin our JEDI work prior to starting the strategic planning process so that all facets of the organization can be viewed through a lens of racial equity and justice. We also do not intend for this initiative to be a one-time effort. We recognize this work will be ongoing and our needs and goals may evolve over time.
In 2021, HeartLands Conservancy is developing an assessment and action plan. Updates will be posted here. We hope you will follow along and participate in our journey.
HeartLands Conservancy is creating a new strategic plan starting in 2021/22 to guide the next five years. Check back for updates.