Alcoa has received the 2013 Catalyst Award, which honors innovative organizational approaches that address the recruitment, development and advancement of women in the workplace.
WHITEHALL – Alcoa (NYSE: AA) has received the prestigious 2013 Catalyst Award, honoring innovative organizational approaches that address the recruitment, development, and advancement of women in the workplace.
Alcoa’s initiative “Building Opportunities for Women in a ’Hard Hat‘ Company,” showcases how Alcoa broke down barriers in a male-dominated industry and achieved greater gender representation through an aggressive diversity agenda.
Since 1987, Catalyst has recognized exceptional business initiatives that advance women in the workplace with the Catalyst Award, which embodies Catalyst’s vision of “Changing workplaces, Changing lives.” Alcoa’s global initiative, “Building Opportunities for Women in a ’Hard Hat‘ Company”, outlines the company’s centralized diversity initiative that ties accountability to executive compensation and incorporates innovative talent management programs that Alcoa’s business units customize to develop women supervisors and leaders in Alcoa’s locations worldwide.
Alcoa in Whitehall, in partnership with Grand Valley State University, prepares the next generation of “hard-hatted” women in STEPS (Science Technology Engineering Preview Summer program). For more than a decade, young girls in STEPS learn at the elbows of a dedicated group of Alcoa women engineers just what it takes to become an engineering professional. The program’s results speak for themselves.
“Forty-six percent of STEPS campers choose science and technology undergrad programs versus 28 percent of the women in the general population in Michigan,” said Michelle Curtis, manufacturing engineer, Whitehall casting operations, who serves as an engineering mentor along with more than a dozen other colleagues. This high participation rate in technology-aimed majors is even more impressive when considering that women make up 46 percent of the national workforce but only 10 percent of engineers.
Catalyst announced that initiatives from The Coca-Cola Company and Unilever also are recipients of this year’s Catalyst Award.
“This year’s Catalyst Award-winning initiatives demonstrate that global gender diversity strategies at multinational corporations can be implemented in a way that meets the needs of local regions and businesses,” said Ilene H. Lang, president and CEO, Catalyst. “And they are all championed by male CEOs who understand the strong business case for including women in top leadership and have made women’s advancement a top organization-wide priority from day one.”
“Alcoa’s actions to bolster gender diversity already are producing compelling outcomes, including higher employee engagement scores and improved retention rates among Alcoa women, and advancement against the industrial Catalyst benchmark and the indices of the mining and metals industry,” said Gena Lovett, Chief Diversity Officer, Alcoa. “Given that most of Alcoa’s operations are in mines, refineries and smelters, we are encouraged by these indicators and eager to build upon our successes.”
Alcoa, The Coca-Cola Company, and Unilever will present in-depth discussions on their initiatives at the 2013 Catalyst Awards Conference at The Waldorf Astoria in New York on March 19, 2013. The conference, which is sponsored by Wal-Mart, will feature keynote speaker Ursula Burns, chairman and CEO, Xerox Corporation.
In the evening, the 2013 Catalyst Awards Dinner, sponsored by RBC and Shell Oil Company, will be chaired by Denise Morrison, president and chief executive officer of Campbell Soup Company. Close to 100 CEOs of major multinational corporations and firms are expected to attend, along with nearly 1,600 guests, including leaders of major corporations, firms, academic institutions, and nonprofit organizations.