08:27 AM

Inclusive workplace key connection point for Latinx employees

Dani Lopes Johnson left Brazil at a young age to attend college in the U.S. She arrived with many dreams and aspirations and she quickly learned the value of honoring her past but embracing her future experiences as an undergraduate student in Kentucky then a graduate student at Ball State University.

No matter where she lived, being active in the Latinx community has been a priority. When she joined Nationwide five years ago, the National Latino Alliance employee resource helped her connect with Columbus’ Latinx community.

“The National Latino Alliance employee resource group was one of the first places I found a home,” says Lopes Johnson, an associate vice president of Talent Acquisition. “I didn’t know anyone in Columbus, so they were really my first family here.”

The employee resource group is celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, Sept. 15-Oct. 15, with a series of events for employees on the theme “Be proud of your past and embrace the future.” The month-long celebration kicked off last week with a fireside chat featuring Nationwide Board Member Sara Martinez Tucker and Fidel Vargas, CEO of the Hispanic Scholarship Fund.

“I know that, as Latinos in the U.S., we are not a homogenous group, but there is a lot about our community to respect, love and admire,” says Tucker, who is a self-described sixth-generation Texan. “It gives me a little bit of orgullo – a little bit of pride – to think about all that we bring to this country and that all that we celebrate together as Hispanics – the value of family, the value of religion, the value of entrepreneurship, the value of caring for ourselves and most importantly, the notion of creating a better life for our children.”

Nationwide knows that diversity helps them sustain their strong values and makes the company great. They understand and appreciate the value the Latinx community brings to its workplace.

In her recruiting role, it’s Lopes Johnson’s job to ensure Nationwide’s workforce is reflective of its communities and the members it serves. That’s why Nationwide partners with organizations like the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. These partnerships build talent pipelines that enable the company to find the right talent, at the right time and in the right place.

“We need to have many more Latinos and Latinas in organizations like Nationwide, moving up to take on leadership roles and be role models for others who are going to follow in their footsteps,” Vargas says. “We have a team of full-time recruiters that work with partners like Nationwide to identify talent that we can bring to the organization.”

Once at Nationwide, its inclusive culture supports every employee’s success and encourages an environment where they can feel challenged, appreciated, respected and engaged.

“We’re truly invested in our employees and their growth,” Lopes Johnson says. “People join Nationwide – and stay – because they feel valued and accepted, and that really speaks to who we are as a company.”

Learn more about our approach to diversity and inclusion at nationwide.com/diversity.