Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, the world’s pre-eminent distributor of beverage alcohol, announced on June 16, 2020 that it was creating a new endowed scholarship fund at Florida A&M University (FAMU).
Southern Glazer’s Against Social Injustice and Racial Inequality Endowed Scholarship Fund will grant four scholarships a year for five years to deserving candidates who have an unmet financial need. These actions build upon the company’s already established relationship with the University.
The scholarships are part of the company’s efforts to promote racial equality, from philanthropic grants and community education programming, to internal workplace initiatives and programs to support Black- and minority- owned wine and spirits businesses.
These actions follow a public statement by the Company’s Chief Executive Officer Wayne Chaplin denouncing acts of racial violence and injustice perpetrated against Black citizens and people of color in the U.S.
“It is important to our leadership team and employees that we put actions behind our words,” said Wayne E. Chaplin, CEO. “This is by no means the end to our journey, but represents steps toward being part of the solution to drive change and make progress toward eradicating inequality and injustice.”
To help fight racial injustice and to provide educational opportunities for Black students, Southern Glazer’s is:
Making a financial grant to the Equal Justice Initiative
The Equal Justice Initiative is committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States, to challenging racial and economic injustice, and to protecting basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society.
Partnering with the Black Hospitality Initiative
Fund the Initiative’s scholarship program and provide four scholarships a year for five years to students who meet the initiative’s scholarship criteria. The mission of the Black Hospitality Initiative is to advance economic participation and open doors of opportunity for Blacks in the Greater Miami Hospitality Industry.
In addition, the Company is reinforcing its zero-tolerance policy for any hate, harassment, or discriminatory behavior by expanding on a number of internal workplace culture programs. These include a new Diversity & Inclusion Champion training online course for all employees, virtual listening and town hall conversations sponsored by its CHEERS to Diversity business resource groups, a Company-wide anti- racism book club program, and an expansion of localvolunteer efforts by employee VolunCheers focused on supporting organizations that promote racial equality.
Southern Glazer’s is also expanding its efforts to support Black- and minority-owned wine and spirits in the Company’s portfolio of brands. This effort, driven out of the Company’s Supplier Management and Business Development function, will be led by April Alejandro, vice president of Multicultural Marketing.
As part of her expanded role, Alejandro will develop and implement a comprehensive minority supplier diversity strategy for Southern Glazer’s. The ultimate goal, as with all Southern Glazer’s suppliers, will be to drive commercial success and growth for an expanded portfolio of minority-owned brands. Southern Glazer’s will also enhance its procurement efforts to increase the percentage of Black- and minority-owned vendors that service its business.
This effort will be executed in conjunction with the Company’s already established Multicultural Marketing Center of Excellence, currently led by Alejandro, which focuses on implementing diverse consumer initiatives, providing suppliers with cultural insights, programming strategies for on-premise and off-premise customers, and supporting minority- owned businesses across Southern Glazer’s network.
Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits is the world’s pre-eminent distributor of beverage alcohol, and proud to be a multi-generational, family-owned company. The Company has operations in 44 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, and Canada. Southern Glazer’s urges all retail customers and adult consumers to market, sell, serve, and enjoy its products responsibly. For more information visit www.southernglazers.com.