Today, the Southern Gas Association (SGA) announced the launch of four inclusion initiatives to promote change and help end systemic racism. The SGA is driven by the philosophy that we have a duty to invest in the excellence of each other and our industry, said Suzanne Ogle, SGA President and CEO. Our Association is more than a century old. A lot has changed over the years, but one thing remains the same, our commitment to innovate, connect and work together to write the next chapter for an equitable and sustainable tomorrow. The launch of these four inclusion initiatives demonstrates that we believe change is a function of not only words, but action.
A Mission to Advance the Individual and The Industry
America is engaged in an essential and complicated conversation about bias and disparity. With a mission to advance the individual and the industry, the Southern Gas Association will do our part to help end systemic racism, continues Ogle Living our core values means providing for continuous learning and creating safe and secure communities. We must gain knowledge and ensure that all people and communities can succeed. We must respect each other and understand how our unique backgrounds can provide unique contributions. We will use the strength of our resources and collective knowledge to promote change.
SGAs immediate action steps include:
1) Seeking understanding with a new blog series named Montage. Southern Gas Association will provide a platform for the voices and personal experiences of diverse colleagues in the natural gas industry in the context of racial bias. These colleagues individual perspectives must be heard.
2) Promoting dialogue with a new panel series: SGA will provide a format for constructive dialogue, which it asserts is an essential component to support widespread systemic change. By hosting a panel series, titled Courageous Conversations, SGA intends to encourage conversations designed to embrace and appreciate every persons background, culture, heritage and experiences. This series will provide a forum to promote inclusion, understanding and positive actions.
3) Creating a Diversity and Inclusion Council. SGA will create an Inclusion and Diversity Council that will report to its Executive Council. This Council will be staffed with senior natural gas industry professionals from SGAs operating members who will work together to develop a competency-based inclusion and diversity roadmap that will be made available to all SGA members as a resource.
4) SGA will Provide Training Opportunities for all Members that Includes Targeted Curriculum designed to Create a Diverse and Inclusive Culture:
a.) A targeted curriculum that includes a variety of resources on how to create a diverse and inclusive culture, including courses, short videos, and courses specifically for leaders. This training can be assigned as a full curriculum or specific resources selected and shared.
b.) SGA member employee onboarding track: A series of classes focused on general industry knowledge, natural gas communication, and diversity and inclusion education. To include:
Ogle asserts that building a diverse and inclusive environment is a lifelong endeavor: We cant just check a diversity box. We will never arrive or hit a ceiling; its work we must do every day. Leaders at every level must use their power, platforms, and resources to help employees and communities overcome these challenges and build a better world for us all “ this is a time for change. As an Association and an industry, we will rise when we lift each other up.
Founded in 1908, the Southern Gas Association is the leader in natural gas training and professional development. SGA is a community of natural gas professionals across the U.S. and Canada. Representing the industry as a whole; from drill bit to burner tip, SGAs membership comprises 200 businesses across the distribution, transmission, and gas supply marketing sectors as well as more than 350 industry partners. Through digital and in person engagement, SGA members come together to share ideas, resources, and best practices to develop people, relationships and solutions.