corporate america

Episode 83: Changing American Companies from the Top Down


In this conversation on race, journalist Tony Chapelle joins me to talk about getting more women and people of color on corporate boards. Tony Chapelle, has recently retired after 36 years, as a business news reporter and producer.

In his career, he has interviewed CEOs and corporate executives, and  moderated panel discussions with corporate board directors of Fortune 1000 companies. Tony, has been interviewed more than 60 times for his insights on African Americans in business by the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, CNN, CNBC, Fox Business channel.

As an African American and as a journalist, Tony has been involved with efforts to bring more people of color on corporate boards which have been overwhelmingly white.

“African Americans, other racial minorities, and white people of goodwill have tried almost every tactic known to man to effect racial justice in this country.

In the more than 100-year evolution of the fight for equal opportunity, one of the most intractable excuses that we hear in the workplace is that a particular corporation would love to hire more Black folks, “If only we could find those who are qualified.”

On its surface, this seems to be a plausible rationale for not having people of color in the corporate workforce.

But highly-qualified Blacks, Latinos, and Asians are out there in great numbers including those who could sit on the boards of directors at companies where they could make the great decisions and changes that would alter corporations from the top down. “

Key topics:
• How corporate boards run corporations, and influence decisions made by organizations and governments that impact our everyday lives
• How companies can decide whether they’re going to be good citizens, whether they’re going to be profiteers, or whether they’re going to just do as little as possible to be viewed as doing the right thing
• The isolation of being the only Black person on national news networks and having to deal with constant racism
• Why Tony Chapelle founded a newsletter for Black people on wall street
• Why it’s critical to this country and the world to get more people of color, women, and LGBTQ people on corporate boards
• How climate change activists have gotten people on corporate boards
• How and why created a directory of people of color, women, and LGBTQ people who are highly qualified to sit on corporate boards
• Disproving the fallacy that there are not enough qualified POC, women, and LGBTQ to sit on boards
• Which corporate leaders are bringing people POC, women, and LGBTQ to their corporate boards

 

Bio

Tony Chapelle recently retired after 36 years as a business news reporter and producer. For the past 20 years, he has interviewed CEOs and corporate executives, and has moderated panel discussions with corporate board directors at Fortune 1,000 companies. Chapelle has been interviewed more than 60 times for his insights on African Americans in business by The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, CNN, CNBC, Fox Business Channel, and a host of other news agencies. He worked his entire career in New York as a staffer at the Financial Times publication Agenda, CNN, Thomson Financial, and Johnson Publishing. In addition, he freelanced  and he and his wife published a newsletter called Securities Pro for blacks on Wall Street. He also was the national editor for Jesse Jackson’s newsletter for his Wall Street Project, which aimed to get corporate America to collaborate with Black companies. Chapelle graduated from the Columbia University School of Journalism in 1984.

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