Promoting a passion for D&I.
At Bader Rutter, we believe that passion drives progress. And it’s a passionate group of employees at our agency that help drive forward our D&I initiatives. The Bader Rutter D&I Leadership Council is comprised of eight individuals, plus several volunteers, across a variety of functions that have dedicated themselves to developing our plan of action. This includes leading our four commitments. Here’s how we define them and what they mean to the members who helped establish them:
BR supports each employee’s process of self-discovery about topics related to diversity, inclusion and belonging. We do this by providing resources and opportunities for employees to educate themselves.
“It’s so easy to make mistakes, even well-intentioned ones, by not understanding other perspectives and priorities. When it comes to DEI topics, we are prisoners of our own experiences if we don’t actively take steps to learn and understand.” – Elena Davis, HR Manager
“I believe that there is always a better way of doing things – that even if we’ve made great strides, there is always more to be done.” — Liz Roberts, Planner
BR leadership commits to listening to employees about topics related to diversity, inclusion and belonging and encourages employees to have open and honest conversations with each other. We do this by providing a range of feedback channels and spaces for discussion.
“This pillar reminds me that, even on this council, it’s never about being all-knowing. We all have a responsibility to really listen, absorb and appreciate different cultures, backgrounds, languages, marginalized communities, etc. Beyond that, it feels good to work for a company committed to truly hearing and responding to the needs of their employees on topics related to DEI.” — Devin Martin, Senior Talent Acquisition Manager
“Every story is not your story to tell. Sometimes we need to listen, take those learnings and do more to build up those people whose stories need to be heard. We need to do more to make everyone’s voices heard.” — Gina Tomilonus, Designer
BR executes on action plans to become a more diverse and inclusive organization that fosters a sense of belonging. We do this by providing training for our employees, implementing talent acquisition plans and tracking our progress.
“By nature, I’m not a very patient person, and when it comes to D&I, it feels even more urgent. I think keeping that sense of urgency is important because this is SUCH an important initiative and is imperative for the growth both inside and outside of BR.” — Margaret Bradley, HR Generalist
“This pillar is a commitment to not only learning more about D&I at BR but continuing to evolve and take up the challenges of actually making lasting impacts to the way we work, the way we hire, and the way we foster inclusivity and belonging in our four walls (and beyond). It’s also about the support we’re providing to both employees and BR as a whole to go beyond the learning opportunities and to arm each person, team and leader with the right resources to practice what we preach.” — Justin Liesener, Account Supervisor
BR gives of its resources to support diversity, inclusion and belonging and encourages employees to do the same. We do this by offering our employees service days, partnering with local organizations on pro bono work and making monetary donations.
“Our work doesn’t stop when we have workshops or conversations on culture. That’s just the beginning. Bader Rutter is taking it a step further by acting proactively within the community and giving our agency a greater sense of purpose.” — Jess Ayala, Associate Producer
“We all need to do more than we are at the moment. It was my main motivation for getting started. I was a little intimidated by the process and unsure of where I stood being a middle-aged straight white man. I’m not someone who should be leading this discussion or dictating terms. But I knew, at minimum, I could listen to the concerns of others, give them my time and sincere attention, and become smarter about the problems we have to fix in Milwaukee and beyond. It’s all about finding a way Bader Rutter can get closer to being an exemplary institution on these matters. But that starts by giving more of ourselves.” — Jim Kogutkiewicz, Senior Content Specialist