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New initiative brings together pubmedia leaders to focus on DEI

Black man speaking, Juan Johnson
Juan Johnson, a senior fellow with the Riley Institute and facilitator of the PMDLI.

Since 2003, the Riley Institute at Furman University has offered its South Carolina Diversity Leaders Initiative. With 2,300 graduates across South Carolina, the program equips leaders with the tools and perspectives needed to leverage diversity as a way to improve organizational outcomes and drive social and economic progress in the state. In partnership with SCETV, the Riley Institute debuted the program for members of public media – Public Media Diversity Leaders Initiative, which took place virtually May 24-July 28, and drew attendance from across the nation. PMDLI will welcome its second cohort of leaders Sept. 9 to Dec. 9.

Mike Jannsen of Current magazine spoke to Don Gordon, executive director of the Riley Institute, about the new offering. “Leaders in public media are having to pay attention to increased expectations set by stakeholders, by employees, by audiences, all of them wanting to establish diversity, equity and inclusion as core values,” he said. “At the same time, they really are also on the front lines of national conversations about race and racism. We’re trying to give public media leaders the frameworks and the tools that they need to further live out the industry’s principles and the values that are held by most public media folks.”

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