Tonight, I had the honor to attend General Mills’ annual Pride reception. This is the second year I’ve had the opportunity to attend the event, and as Mark Addicks, Chief Marketing Officer, shared, there were more than 200 companies represented tonight.
But what really stole the show was when CEO, Ken Powell took the stage to talk about how his company supports diversity and inclusion and how there is a big issue facing Minnesota this fall and that has to do with marriage. Specifically, the proposed constitutional amendment that would update our state constitution to ban marriage between same-sex couples.
Here’s what Mr. Powell had to say on that. Be prepared to be amazed:
…on a proposed constitutional amendment in November. If passed, this amendment would define marriage in our state constitution as being between one man and one woman, effectively banning same-sex marriage in Minnesota. If defeated, Minnesota voters would send a strong message about our state’s view of the importance of inclusiveness and diversity. I think it’s very clear that the outcome of this election is very uncertain. Ban proponents have won most ballot contests, but Minnesota is seen as one of the best opportunities in the nation to defeat such a ban. Maybe building on the momentum of states like New York and Washington. And frankly, I don’t think we know what will happen.
But we know what position General Mills will take, and I want to share that with you myself.
For decades, General Mills has worked to create an inclusive culture that welcomes and values the contributions of everyone. We’re proud of our workplace, we’re proud to be an employer of choice, we’re proud to be a leader for diversity and inclusion.
So I want to be clear: We oppose the proposed constitution…
[Cheers and applause, standing ovation for Mr. Powell]
We oppose the amendment. We don’t believe it’s in the best interest of our state, our business, or our employees. As a Minnesota-based business, we oppose it.
Talk about an inspiration. I can’t help but think what a historic moment this was to be part of and I’m so thankful for CEO Ken Powell’s support along with the support of General Mills.
Congratulations to my friends and colleagues in Betty’s Family. You deserve to be very proud.