Goodwill's Chief Diversity Officer Discusses the Great Migration

    [fa icon="calendar'] Feb 16, 2024 11:15:00 AM / by Sam Stockman posted in Leadership Spotlight, Strategic Plan, DEI, Black History Month

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    Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana continues its celebration of Black History Month by spotlighting African American leaders across the organization. Ivan P. Cropper, Vice President of Marketing and Communications and Chief Diversity Officer at Goodwill, sees February as a pivotal time to set the tone for the rest of the year – an opportunity to reflect on the influence of African Americans and those who paved the way for future generations.

    "Black history is American history, and although we emphasize it in February, it’s no less important throughout the year," Ivan said.

    Black History Month provides a space to recognize Black people’s contributions to America’s successes, which have had an enduring impact. Ivan recalls being influenced by figures such as Jesse Jackson running for president in the 1980s and being drawn to the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. From Spike Lee’s thought-provoking films to Oprah Winfrey’s journey from actor to executive producer in "The Color Purple," Ivan acknowledges the challenges these individuals faced to achieve success.

    Ivan's family history is intertwined with the Great Migration – a period of time between 1910 and 1970 when African Americans left the Jim Crow south behind in pursuit of opportunities up north. His mother, father and grandmother left Virginia and North Carolina in the 60s and 70s, with his grandmother selling her established corner store to join her son in Connecticut, where Ivan was later raised.

    In response to the events surrounding George Floyd in the summer of 2020, Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana looked inward to determine its role in fostering a better and more equitable world. The organization appointed Ivan as Chief Diversity Officer, entrusting him to lead the effort in championing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) throughout the organization. Under Ivan's guidance, Goodwill incorporated DEI into its strategic plan, encouraging all departments to develop their own equity work plans that complement the organization's plans.

    "Being the Chief Diversity Officer is understanding the broad spectrum of where people find themselves,” Ivan said. “It's about ensuring that programs and learning opportunities are in place to meet people where they are and allow them to continue their education within that space."

    Ivan remains committed to collaborating daily with people from all walks of life. Similar to his parents and grandparents who sought to create opportunities for their futures, Ivan strives to create opportunities for the individuals we employ, educate and serve at Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana.

    "People of color have been on this continent for centuries, making contributions to American life,” Ivan noted. “I genuinely appreciate the people we work with day-to-day and what they bring to the table. Their open hearts and minds for people of all walks of life are evident every day. I’m happy to be a part of it."

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    Celebrating Two Decades at The Children’s Learning Center | Meet Rachel Darby

    [fa icon="calendar'] Sep 8, 2023 4:00:00 PM / by Jennifer Wade posted in Education, Children's Learning Center, Leadership Spotlight, Goodwill Education

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    Finding the right child care provider can be daunting for parents. Luckily, Goodwill’s Children’s Learning Center has served families in southern Indiana since 1980 by providing high-quality care and educational services.

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    Leadership Spotlight | Montez Day, Goodwill New Beginnings Facilitator

    [fa icon="calendar'] Jun 9, 2023 3:00:00 PM / by Noelle Gray posted in New Beginnings, Criminal History, Leadership Spotlight

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    Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana is always proud to highlight our hardworking leaders, dedicated to achieving our mission of changing lives every day through employment, education and health. As a Goodwill New Beginnings team member, Montez Day helps those who have experienced the justice system.

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    Celebrating Women’s History Month with Jessica Coslett

    [fa icon="calendar'] Mar 30, 2023 3:30:00 PM / by Noelle Gray posted in Employment, Retail, Leadership Spotlight

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    As Women’s History Month comes to a close, Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana continues to highlight women leaders who contribute to the mission of changing lives daily through education, health and employment. 

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    Leadership Spotlight | Alicia Hall, Goodwill Ignite Coach

    [fa icon="calendar'] Mar 21, 2023 3:00:00 PM / by Noelle Gray posted in Employment, Mission Awareness, Leadership Spotlight, Goodwill Ignite

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    Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana is proud to highlight leaders who help us achieve our mission of changing lives every day through employment, education and health. Alicia Hall is one of those amazing leaders, serving as a coach for the Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana Ignite program.

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    Celebrating Black History Month with Michelle Washington

    [fa icon="calendar'] Feb 24, 2023 9:00:00 AM / by Noelle Gray posted in Nurse-Family Partnership, Leadership Spotlight

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    As Black History Month proceeds, Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana continues to celebrate Black leaders, mission participants and students who contribute to fulfilling our mission each day. Michelle Washington has shown great dedication to this mission during her career, serving as a Goodwill Nurse-Family Partnership® Nurse Home Visitor, a Nurse Supervisor, and now, one of the Directors of Operations for the program.

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    Celebrating Black History Month with Steven Hedrick, The Excel Center

    [fa icon="calendar'] Feb 17, 2023 9:00:00 AM / by Jennifer Wade posted in The Excel Center, Education, Leadership Spotlight

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    “Black History Month is an opportunity to celebrate and honor Black achievements. It means support of the advancement of the Black community,” said Steven Hedrick. 

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    Celebrating Black History Month with Shannon Brown

    [fa icon="calendar'] Feb 1, 2023 3:00:00 PM / by Jennifer Wade posted in Indianapolis Metropolitan High School, Education, Leadership Spotlight

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    February is Black History Month, and Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana is proud and excited to celebrate its Black and African American leaders, mission participants and students. Shannon E.G. Brown is a shining example of a strong, inspiring leader who joined Goodwill Education Initiatives nearly three years ago.

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    Leadership Spotlight | Eric Schlegel, VP of Operations for Goodwill

    [fa icon="calendar'] Jul 9, 2021 12:00:00 PM / by Stephenie Snow posted in Retail, COVID-19, Leadership Spotlight

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    Meet Eric Schlegel, Vice President of Operations for Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana. Eric has served Goodwill for over a decade, beginning as a Senior Director for Goodwill’s Outlets and E-Commerce divisions. In his current role, Eric works across the entire organization to help ensure our operations teams are set up for success in both our business and our mission every day. 

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    Leadership Spotlight — Trelles Evans

    [fa icon="calendar'] Oct 27, 2020 9:00:00 AM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Disability, Goodwill Commercial Services, New Beginnings, Disability Services, Criminal History, Leadership Spotlight

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    Trelles Evans, Director of Mission Advancement for Reentry and Disability Services at Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana, discusses her role and the people served by the programs she oversees.

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