Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
At Tom Tom, we try to focus on what we are for, but at times like these, it is essential to establish what we are against. In response to nationwide protests surrounding the death of George Floyd, and in the context of continuing examples of the structural undervaluing of Black life in America, we want to make clear to our community where we stand:
We will elevate diverse voices and create impact-oriented programs that are anchored in equity and inclusion. These priorities are reflected in all of our work so far 2020: the Cities Rising Summit, the Exposed series built in collaboration with the United Way of Greater Charlottesville, the Com Com Live! initiative, and our Virtual Roundtables series.
We have shifted our revenue model to pay-what-you-can programming to ensure that everyone can be a part of the conversations impacting our community. We are also working to increase the financial compensation we offer to our speakers, including our local community members and BIPOC.
We will continue to increase the diversity of our community program collaborators. We have worked hard to include a diverse and representative group of collaborators in past programs.
As we continue to grow, we want to recommit our work and focus on the Charlottesville community. We plan to do so by prioritizing local partnerships and focusing on programs with longevity and impact.
Elevating Organizations & Community Leaders
We plan to continue to use our Com Com community platform to highlight outstanding community organizations and leaders. In addition, we are launching a new feature profiling the work and lives of community activists and changemakers. If you would like to nominate a local leader for us to highlight, please let us know below.
Community Advisory Board
We are in the process of forming a Community Advisory Board to provide guidance and perspective on programs and initiatives of the foundation. We are currently in conversations with several BIPOC leaders in our community to ensure that this board is diverse, inclusive, and representative.
We wish to acknowledge all of the truths of Thomas Jefferson and as such are currently discussing the future of our name with our board, staff, and community advisors. If you have any feedback, please let us know below.
We are against racism in all its forms.
None of our programming matters if we don't first begin to deeply question and root out the unjust thoughts and tendencies embedded in our psyches, our communities, and our culture, and work to dismantle the systems and structures that perpetually devalue and endanger people of color, women, and members of the LGBTQ+ community. We are committed to doing that both as an organization and in our work. We stand against racism, against police brutality, against excessive violence, against misogyny, and against homophobia & transphobia.
Tom Tom Foundation recognizes the pressing need to anchor these conversations locally and will continue to pursue a rigorous internal dialogue about our organization’s role in addressing them. We understand that this work begins internally, and we recognize that there are many ways we can improve. We are actively seeking to realize that through both day-to-day actions and long-term plans.