I'm so excited to announce the formation of the Diversity Advocacy Alliance at High Point Market. It was such an honor to have been asked to be a founding member of this initiative and we've been working together behind the scenes since last market to officially launch this fall market.
As a multi-cultural designer (Mexican, Native American and Filipina, in case you were wondering), this initiative incredibly close to my heart and I'm happy that future designers may see themselves reflected in our groups presence and visibility.
Here's the press release from High Point Market in its entirety.
Diversity Advocacy Alliance Forms to Promote Inclusivity Within Industry
Launch event at Fall Market developed in partnership with High Point Market Authority
HIGH POINT, N.C., Oct. 10, 2022 – High Point Market Authority (HPMA) announces the formation of the Diversity Advocacy Alliance (DAA), created with a focus on advancing, improving, and supporting diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) within the home furnishings sector.
DAA is made up of fourteen founding members, including three from the current HPMA Board of Directors roster, and is managed by social innovation firm, Change Often. The group’s mission statement reflects a commitment to expanding representation of the BIPOC community and facilitating the implementation of equitable policies and practices throughout the industry and its leadership.
“The Diversity Advocacy Alliance is a welcome initiative to amplify diverse voices at High Point Market,” says Tom Conley, HPMA president and CEO. “HPMA is aligned with the DAA mission to cultivate a supportive environment for all Market attendees.”
“We’re excited to partner with DAA, to listen and learn, and to foster inclusivity throughout High Point Market and the broader industry,” adds Conley.
Hosting its first event open to registered High Point Market attendees, DAA launches its inaugural diversity and inclusion panel discussion, organized in partnership with HPMA, at Congdon Yards, 410 W. English Road, on Sunday, Oct. 23, at 4pm.
Panelists include members of the DAA committee and representatives of the BIPOC design community Patti Carpenter (moderator), Everick Brown, Rachel Moriarty, Ashley Ross, and Victoria Sanchez.
The talk will aim to identify what authentic representation within the business community entails, and conclude with conversation about the role cultural design will play in its future growth.
"It's been my sincere pleasure to work with HPMA and this team of BIPOC creatives on the DAA,” says Patti Carpenter, principal of carpenter + company and DAA committee chair. “This is a very necessary initiative. It affects our lives and our livelihoods, but most importantly it affects our entire creative community.“
“We know that issues around these topics are present and it's incumbent upon us to work together to make real and lasting change,” adds Carpenter. “Change that will impact us all and make for better business in the future."
Following the panel discussion, a networking reception with light refreshments begins at 5 pm, and will include participation from the full roster of DAA Committee Members:
Lisa Walker Brown
*HPMA Board Member
Representatives from Change Often will be on hand to answer questions and to provide information and resources.