Did you know September 15th kicked off National Hispanic Heritage Month? The initial observation started as a week in 1968, before officially becoming a month-long celebration twenty years later. Running through mid-October, the timeframe coincides with the anniversary of independence for several Latin American countries. The month recognizes the contributions made by Hispanic and Latinx Americans to the United States and celebrates their heritage and culture of family, faith, and hard work.
Helping Staples celebrate this important month is our Business Resource Group, HOLA. Short for Hispanic or Latino(a), HOLA, aims to ensure diversity and inclusion by empowering, developing, and inspiring our employees and the local community. As part of this mission, HOLA has partnered with two prominent organizations over the years: the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA) and the Chica Project.
The first national Latinx professional association in the United States, ALPFA, works to empower and develop Latino men and women as leaders. With this common interest, HOLA works with ALPFA to attract and develop more Latinx employees at the professional and collegiate level.
Another HOLA partner, The Chica Project is a Massachusetts-based non-profit. Its mission is to close the opportunity divide for Latinas and other women of color by empowering them with skills, confidence and the network necessary to thrive personally and professionally. HOLA supports the Chica Project on fundraising events throughout the year and previously organized a back to school drive for local underprivileged students.
This year HOLA has lots to celebrate for Hispanic Heritage Month. Not only does the resource group have two new co-chairs (Brian Dardy and Luz Frazier), but it’s founding member, Cristina Gonzalez, Staples Chief Legal Officer, was recently named to ALPFA’s 2019 Powerful Latinas list. Throughout the month the group will focus on several efforts from organizing a networking mixer to inviting Chica Project students to our home office for a career exploration day. They also developed a video highlighting the importance of the month and its impact on our employees.
With inclusion being a core value here at Staples, HOLA and the full organization work hard to increase underrepresented groups in our workforce and make sure they feel like a part of the team. The result isn’t just a better workplace, it delivers the innovative thinking that helps us meet customers’ expectations and achieve our business goals.
Interested in joining the team? Check out our current openings.