December 17, 2020
This work is a movement – not a moment – and we’re here to listen and learn along the way. And what better way to bring our journey to life than through the experiences of our own employees.
MARK BREITBARD, HEAD OF GAP GLOBAL
Mark is no stranger to the world of retail and the challenges facing the industry regarding diversity and inclusion. He is an advocate for celebrating diversity and partnering to support innovation. In 2019, Gap Inc. began a partnership with Harlem’s Fashion Row to collaborate with Black designers and increase programs for a multicultural audience.
“Across Gap Inc., we are committed to inclusive design and talent. With HFR, we are providing stronger opportunities for designers of color to share their collections, reach more customers and advance their careers with fashion companies. The HFR collaborations with Janie and Jack and Banana Republic are just the beginning of this creative partnership.”
RA’MON-LAWRENCE RADEKE (THEY/THEIR), WOMEN'S DESIGN LEADER AT BANANA REPUBLIC
With more than 20 fireside chats and ten different workshops, many of our Black employees had the opportunity to attend the Executive Leadership Council’s Mid- Manager Symposium focused on the full identity of the Black professional.
"It was a watershed of reflection, solidarity and empowerment in so many ways. In this moment, where 'table stakes' representation can continually feel all too distant for many looking to drive meaningful change, this platform centered focus on professional transformation; starting from within,” said Ra’mon.
“It starts with embracing the value of our VOICE; leaning into our authenticity without apology and collectively growing together. I took many lessons with me, but this one resonated deeply: 'The place in which I’ll fit will not exist until I make it.' -James Baldwin."
LORNA CONTRERAS TOWNSEND (SHE/HERS), LEADER OF DIVERSITY OUTREACH AT GAP INC.
Lorna is one of the many new faces to join the Equality + Belonging team, ready to dive in. From her own personal experiences growing up in the Bay Area as a low-income, first generation Latina to more than 10 years at Students Rising Above, a San Francisco-based college success and career pipeline program for underrepresented communities, her passion for large scale change in achieving equitable workforce opportunities brought her to Gap.
“I felt that Gap was authentically invested in creating connections within the community and was in a unique position to influence real systemic change,” said Lorna. In her new role, she is thrilled to help build sustainable community partnerships that will create opportunities for diverse pipelines and talent outreach at all levels.
JORGE OCASIO (THEY/THEIR), EQUALITY & BELONGING GROUP LEAD
Jorge embodies our culture of inclusion and speaks with candor when it comes to the needs of their and their allies’ communities. From their time in stores in Puerto Rico to our NYC HQ office supporting our Franchise business, Jorge continues to make space for the voices around them to unlock both personal and business growth.
“As part of Gap Inc., I have a responsibility to be part of the change and to remind others that we are Inclusive, By Design – from our product to the way we honor our customers’ identities. I do this by speaking up, especially in moments where I feel I and many others are excluded from the narrative. Even if what I’m saying will not be accepted immediately, it will challenge peoples’ thinking and start a conversation,” said Jorge.