Today, Adventure 4 Women is making a steadfast commitment to becoming an anti-racist organization – which to us means actively seeking to dismantle and eradicate racism in ourselves, our workplace, on our platforms, and in the outdoor community. We regret not acting sooner and want to acknowledge our shortcomings, especially to the Black community. We are not doing nearly enough to combat racism. Black Americans are underrepresented in the outdoor industry, both in employment and in our media and that must end.
The senseless and brutal killings of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd – and countless others across our country - has shaken us to our core. We share feelings of outrage, injustice, and sadness. We stand with the Black community as they protest the brutality and racism they have endured for centuries. We add our voice to the many who are speaking out and demanding change; however, we know that change begins with us, as a company and as individuals.
To that end, Adventure 4 Women is committed to providing resources and training for all employees to create an Anti-Racist culture in our organization and at our events. The most important next step is to listen, and then speak up. We cannot remain silent nor complacent. It starts with each of us, and as CEO that means it starts with me. I have personally committed myself to spend more time each day on learning to be Anti-Racist and doing more to learn about racist policies in America and how they can be reversed. I am also committed to providing our team with the tools to engage in their own learning and understanding as well. We must be in this together, as an organization, so that we can build a better and more inclusive outdoor community. We must commit to being courageous and kind in order to build a better society, country, and future.
We are actively taking steps to support organizations such as the NAACP and the Equal Justice Initiative to combat systemic racial injustice. We are committed to supporting Black entrepreneurs and adventurists in the outdoor community and encourage you to do the same. These include organizations such as GirlTrek, Diversify Outdoors, and Wild Diversity, each of which promotes diversity in outdoor recreation and conservation. We support the Diversity Pledge and are taking steps to not only sign it but to build our organization around the principles of diversity and inclusion. We follow and continue to support adventurists/athletes such as Mirna Valerio (@themirnavator), Unlikely Hikers (@unlikelyhikers), and Rahawa Haile (@rahawahaile). We are committed to focusing on their achievements in the outdoors and in society, which is one way that we can amplify their voices and elevate our community. These are only the first of many steps we are taking to build an Anti-Racist organization and we will continue to update our outdoor community and supporters as we take future steps. There is much more to do, and we are committed to do all that we can.
Once again, I recognize my shortcomings as an individual. I recognize our complacency as an organization. The current atmosphere and outrage must become more than a “moment in history”, it must become the beginning of Anti-Racist America. That starts with me, here and now. It starts with each of us. There is no turning back.