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DIVERSITY, EQUITY AND INCLUSION

Fleet Feet believes in the power of running and grassroots outreach to make positive and lasting change. Our business efforts are grounded in this premise in order to make good on our brand vision of inspiring the runner in everyone.

The ongoing systemic racism and brutality actioned against the Black community in the summer of 2020 made the contradiction of our vision with our reality inexcusably clear. While we state we’re committed to inspiring the runner in “everyone,” the Black community is glaringly underrepresented throughout the Fleet Feet business in employment, customer base, corporate leadership and store ownership.

When it comes to issues of diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI), we recognize that it’s ignorant to believe that these areas can and will change for the better without an ongoing focus that’s tethered to specific, time-sensitive, measurable goals and executed with tactics rooted in intention, urgency and transparency.

EVERYONE MEANS

Fleet Feet has the responsibility to bring our brand vision to life so that “everyone” truly means everyone, and we have created two key pillars of action and accountability to focus our efforts.

These pillars—people and partnerships—are pivotal in transforming our current state of underrepresentation of marginalized communities across the brand into one of social and racial equity, inclusiveness and diversity.

Our urgency, focus, and commitments start with the Black community; it won’t be where we stop. We will continue to add information, updates, and resources to this page as we move forward in creating inclusivity and equity for all marginalized, underrepresented, and Black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) communities.

PILLARS & ONGOING COMMITMENTS

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PILLAR ONE: PEOPLE

Create a more diverse workforce and a culture that values and reflects diverse perspectives, voices, backgrounds and beliefs.

COMMITMENT #1
Ensure our company structure (i.e. processes, policies and programs) is equitable for all Store Support Team, Distribution Center, and company store employees.

COMMITMENT #2
Expand recruitment efforts to increase the number of underrepresented candidates and ultimately, our workforce, by hiring a Talent Acquisition Manager with experience in increasing the number of unrepresented candidates and employees; creating an internship program focused on Black recruitment; and enhancing our hiring and onboarding processes.

COMMITMENT #3
Continue ongoing DEI education for 100% of all Store Support Team, Distribution Center, and company store employees and bring awareness and learnings to life by creating opportunities for discussion and dialogue amongst all our employees.


Diversity Partnership image of 2 Runners

PILLAR TWO: PARTNERSHIPS

Support the growth, success and vitality of Black organizations, charities, non-profits, events, athletes and content contributors in the running community through Fleet Feet’s resources, funds, platforms and industry leadership.

COMMITMENT #1
Use our charitable arm, Do The Run Thing, to raise money, awareness and resources for black-led organizations in the running community. Listen to our podcast with the race directors of the Civil Rights Race Series.

COMMITMENT #2
Establish and maintain pathways, tools and resources for successful partnerships at the local level between national organizations and Fleet Feet franchise and company-owned doors. Learn more about Fleet Feet’s partnership with Black Girls RUN!

COMMITMENT #3
Use our platform in allyship to elevate the voices of Black runners, athletes and leaders, and create space for candid conversations about racism within the running community. Watch our June 2020 panel on systemic racism.

COMMITMENT #4
Diversify our freelance contributor pool by working with Black contributors, influencers and content creators and paying them our standard for freelance contributions. Read Claire Green’s blog post on rethinking safe running and Adina Crawford’s post on body positivity.

COMMITMENT #5
Lead change within the running industry through partnerships and participation in action-oriented coalitions and endeavors focused on creating opportunity and fostering allyship with the Black community. Read more about the Running Industry Diversity Coalition.


ACCOUNTABILITY

Our commitments become reality by holding ourselves accountable to the below brandwide, measurable, time-specific initiatives:

By March 31, 2021

  • Hire a Talent Acquisition Manager who is experienced with building a diversity recruitment strategy and has been successful in increasing the number of unrepresented candidates and employees. Update: As of April 30, 2021, we have welcomed six new employees to our Store Support Team and Distribution Center, and we continue to actively search for an experienced Talent Acquisition Manager.
  • Work with Black Girls RUN! and Civil Rights Race Series to set and communicate specific 2021 partnership goals. Update: We kicked off the year in partnership with Saucony and Black Girls Run! to raise over $25,000 for the Black Girls Run! Foundation. Read more about our confirmed 2021 initiatives with Black Girls Run! here.
  • Enhance our Employee Handbook to include our Diversity mission and statement, and any other opportunity to stress the importance of DEI within our culture. Update: Our employee handbook update has been completed and sent out to all our company-owned employees. The enhancements include adding our Diversity statement, updating our Volunteer Time Off policy to include any civil protests as an acceptable use of time off, and ensuring inclusive language has been used throughout the handbook. We utilized our new software system, Textio, to review and enhance our language of belonging.

By June 30, 2021

  • Enhance our hiring and onboarding process and practices.
  • Conduct an equitable pay audit to ensure there is equitable pay among all our employees and their positions.


By September 30, 2021

  • Create a fully-paid internship program focused on Black recruitment that overcomes perceived barriers of participation related to location, transportation, or awareness.
  • Establish a Fleet Feet editorial review board that consists of black contributors and key Fleet Feet partners for monthly editorial review and planning to ensure equity in all of the content that we create, edit and share.
  • Establish Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) throughout the organization and ensure they have the platform, opportunity and resources to have dialogue and create impactful change. Human Resources will lead the communication efforts.
  • Develop a succession planning process that is fair and ensures all underrepresented groups have opportunities to professionally develop. Update: This commitment first appeared under the June 30, 2021 deadlines. We have moved it to September to better accurately reflect the time and resources needed to accomplish a project of this scope. We added this note to ensure transparency about the change.

Ongoing

  • All company-owned employees will complete the DEI training curriculum.
  • Continue to have employee dialogue through the Fleet Feet Discussion group forum.
  • Communicate and encourage high utilization of our Volunteer Time Off (VTO) policy.

Meet the Task Force

We created an internal task force to help drive success and accountability of all DEI initiatives. Comprising Fleet Feet Store Support Team employees, owners, operators and store employees, the Task Force will use their unique experiences and perspectives to:

  • Help inform the development of Fleet Feet's DEI initiatives
  • Partner with Fleet Feet senior leadership to ensure objectives reflect antiracist principles and uplift underrepresented communities
  • Support the leader of each pillar by advocating for and participating in key projects and tasks
  • Hold Fleet Feet leadership accountable for the implementation and facilitation of all DEI initiatives

Dawn Fabbro
Owner
Fleet Feet Montclair, NJ

Jimmy Grissett
Outbound Manager
Fleet Feet Distribution Center

Sarah Holden
Human Resources Manager
Fleet Feet Store Support Team
she / her / hers

Abigail Sharpless
Customer Care
Fleet Feet Store Support Team
she / her / hers

Crystal Kennedy
Retail Experience Manager
Fleet Feet Roanoke, VA
she / her / hers

Mandy Wahl
Marketing and Community Outreach Manager
Fleet Feet Greensboro and High Point, NC
she / her / hers

Victor Ornelas
Director, Brand Management
Fleet Feet Store Support Team
he / him / his

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