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Top Business Leaders Launch OneTen

A coalition of leading CEOs and organizations are coming together today to announce the formation of OneTen, an organization that will combine the power of these committed American companies to upskill, hire and promote one million Black Americans over the next 10 years into family-sustaining jobs with opportunities for advancement.

In this moment when all Americans share an aspiration for greater economic opportunity, leading executives and employers across industries are taking action to make a meaningful, measurable and lasting systemic impact on racial and economic justice and to create a more equitable society. OneTen connects employers with talent partners, leading non-profits and other skill-credentialing organizations that support the development of diverse talent.

OneTen was founded by Ken Chenault, Chairman and Managing Director of General Catalyst and former Chairman and CEO of American Express, Ken Frazier, Chairman and CEO of Merck, Charles Phillips, Managing Partner of Recognize, Chairman of the Black Economic Alliance and former CEO of Infor, Ginni Rometty, Executive Chairman and former CEO of IBM and Kevin Sharer, former Chairman and CEO of Amgen and former faculty member at Harvard Business School. All five founders will serve on the Board of OneTen together with other participating CEOs. Ken Frazier and Ginni Rometty will serve as co-chairs.

“This is a moment in time for Americans to move past our divisions to come together and reach our full potential as a nation. Our country’s workforce of the future will be an increasingly diverse one,” said Ken Frazier. “Through the creation of one million jobs for Black Americans over the next 10 years, OneTen has the potential to address persistent inter-generational gaps in opportunity and wealth.”

OneTen is not just philanthropy. Rather it is a coalition of leaders across industries who are committed to ensuring that Black Americans with the skills and aptitude to earn success also have the opportunity to achieve success. Recognizing that the current system is not inclusive enough and has reinforced systemic barriers that have prevented many Black Americans from the opportunity to earn success, OneTen has set out to change the way companies provide more equitable environments to drive better business outcomes and benefit all employees. The newly established organization will cultivate an ecosystem that brings together major employers, in partnership with the nation’s leading non-profits and other skill-credentialing organizations, to create a more flexible talent pipeline and practices that will allow employees and employers to thrive by shifting to a skills-first paradigm.

“OneTen links our companies with the critical work we know we need to do to improve racial equity in America,” said Ginni Rometty. “This will not only help our individual companies but by removing structural barriers that have disproportionately hindered Black Americans from joining the middle-class, it will also help lift all Americans. By bringing together a coalition of key leaders and asking them to make long-term commitments, we have the ability to change employment practices and help break down systemic barriers opening the door to full participation in our economy.”

OneTen is launching with the support of 37 founding CEOs and companies across industries. Members include:

  • Accenture [No. 5 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020]
  • ADP [No. 4 in 2020]
  • Allstate [No. 31 in 2020]
  • American Express
  • Amgen
  • Aon
  • AT&T [DiversityInc Hall of Fame company]
  • Bain & Company
  • Bank of America
  • Cargill
  • Caterpillar
  • Cisco
  • Cleveland Clinic [No. 3 on The DiversityInc Specialty List for Top Hospitals and Health Systems Companies in 2020]
  • Comcast [No. 7 in 2020]
  • Deloitte
  • Delta Air Lines
  • Eli Lilly [No. 3 in 2020]
  • General Motors [No. 30 in 2020]
  • HP Inc. [No. 43 in 2020]
  • Humana [No. 25 in 2020]
  • IBM
  • Illinois Tool Works
  • Intermountain Healthcare
  • Johnson & Johnson [DiversityInc Hall of Fame company]
  • Lowe’s
  • Medtronic [No. 33 in 2020]
  • Merck
  • Nike
  • Nordstrom
  • PepsiCo [DiversityInc Noteworthy Company in 2020]
  • Roper Technologies
  • Stryker
  • Target [No. 13 in 2020]
  • Trane Technologies
  • Verizon
  • Walmart [No. 32 in 2020]
  • Whirlpool Corporation

These founding companies look forward to welcoming additional members, including small and medium-sized businesses, which power the majority of the U.S. economy.

OneTen will work with employers, education partners and upskilling partners to design educational and employment solutions. Together, these partners will better develop, retain and advance diverse and underrepresented talent, more broadly, but with an explicit commitment to hire or promote Black Americans without four-year degrees. OneTen’s role in the talent ecosystem will be local, reflecting the workforce development landscape, and focus on reducing exclusionary hiring practices, identifying robust and new talent sources, and ensuring that adequate and equitable career pathways for advancement exist. In January 2021, the organization will begin working with partner employers to improve workplace inclusivity practices and will connect talent providers to partner employers shortly thereafter.

OneTen would like to take this opportunity to thank Bain & Company, Black Economic Alliance, The Bridgespan Group, Bully Pulpit Interactive, Grads of Life, Russell Reynolds Associates, Siegel+Gale, Sullivan & Worcester LLP, Teneo and Year Up who graciously provided support for the launch of this start-up.

About OneTen

OneTen is a coalition of leading chief executives and their companies who are coming together to upskill, hire and promote one million Black Americans over the next 10 years who do not yet have a four-year degree into family-sustaining jobs with opportunities for advancement. We connect employers with talent partners, leading non-profits and other skill-credentialing organizations that support the development of diverse talent. By creating more equitable and inclusive workforces, we believe we can reach our full potential as a nation of united citizens. Join us at OneTen.org.

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