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PrideWorks and AAN Collaborate to Cultivate Inclusion in Covington



The month of June in the U.S. holds two important celebrations – Pride Month and Juneteenth. The two recognitions found common ground in 2022 at our Covington, Georgia plant where Trenae Leonard, Sherwin-Williams Human Resources Generalist, and her team are working to cultivate a space where differences are welcomed, celebrated and appreciated. “The goal was to have an engaging event that sparked conversation on the importance of Pride Month and Juneteenth, as well as exposure to inclusion, diversity and equity at our site,” Leonard explained. 



Planning for the event started in January and Leonard recalled the idea sparked from an experience during her time in the Sherwin-Williams Accelerated Development Program (ADP) in 2021. “The feedback from that similar event was so well received, and I wanted to bring the same energy to Covington.” 

Leonard emphasized the important role the local leadership team played in planning the event. “Without the level of support for employee engagement by our leadership, this event would not have been as successful as it was,” she said. “I am thankful to be a part of such a great team that strives to have an inclusive and diverse culture and mindset.”



The engaging event served as a learning experience for interested employees. Two Company Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), Sherwin-Williams PrideWorks and the African American Network, had a presence on site to teach employees more about Pride Month and Juneteenth. A shrimp boil cookout – a classic tradition in the southeast U.S. region – and special pride-themed cupcakes were provided for all attendees, along with educational games and an open-floor discussion. The ERGs also provided informational flyers as a takeaway for attendees to continue their efforts following the event. “Just hearing the discussion on the floor and in the breakroom afterward was proof this event was an opportunity for employees to learn from their peers,” Leonard said.  



The Covington team intends to keep the momentum going by scheduling events for other recognition days throughout the year. “We are planning events for 90 Days of Summer, Hispanic Heritage Month and Trunk-or-Treat, just to name a few,” Leonard explained. “Our team, with partnership from our ERGs, plans to celebrate these other events in the coming months to continue to educate and bring awareness to our site.”