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For Immediate Release
July 17, 2020
Kate Flavin


County Adds Diversity and Inclusion Officer

(Sedgwick County, Kan.) – During its regular meeting this week the Board of Sedgwick County Commissioners voted to add a Diversity and Inclusion Officer to the organization. The purpose of this position will be to promote and provide opportunities for employees to feel valued, respected, and heard. It will be used to enhance recruitment, hiring, promotion, and retention of a diverse staff with experiences and backgrounds. 

Diversity is one of the goals in Sedgwick County’s latest Strategic Plan which was developed with employee and stakeholder input. It ensures the organization’s employees, policies, and programs promote diversity and inclusion to reflect the community. 

Earlier this year, several County leaders had the opportunity to hear Dow’s Chief Inclusion Officer and Chief Human Resources Officer Karen Carter speak about the importance of diversity. Her analysis is that diversity leads to efficiency and enhances the organization’s bottom, which in Sedgwick County’s case would lead to better service.

County Manager Tom Stolz stated, “we have taken steps over time but this will begin to enhance and bring this effort to the forefront.”

With the continued civil unrest across the nation, Carter’s presentation, and the Strategic Plan, the County is primed to add this position to be accountable for positive change.

Once the position is filled, it will immediately begin working with the Sheriff’s Office, District Attorney's Office, and general government. One focus of this newly created position will be to review policies and procedures to be accountable to diversity, equity, and inclusion within Sedgwick County. 

Sedgwick County recognizes that this is one thing that the organization can do to further promote diversity, inclusion, and equity for the community and for employees to create positive change. Sedgwick County is a community of all people, backgrounds, cultures, perspectives, and different beliefs and it is all of those considerations which make us better when we realize inclusion.