Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
Daily news about corporate social responsibility, ethics and sustainability

Supporting Indigenous Communities: RISE’s Mission for Equity and Inclusion


In 2023, Cintas Corporation was recognized by Forbes as one of the Best Employers for Women. This recognition was based on a survey conducted by Statista, which evaluated companies on various factors such as their working environment, salary, employee diversity, pay equity, parental leave policies, leadership training programs for women, and other workplace issues.

Max Langenkamp, the Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Chief Diversity Officer at Cintas Corporation, and Melanie Barstad from the Johnson & Johnson Family of Companies’ Women’s Leadership Initiative are among the leaders who have contributed to creating a positive work environment for women at their respective companies. 

“Our goal is to supply power to all the unpowered homes across the Navajo Nation while continuing to update our donations to match the growing needs of the community. We also aim to develop a training program to provide an avenue for long-term skill development and eventual employment opportunities for Navajo Nation residents,” said Blaschke. 

The Reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples and Supporting Equity (RISE) business resources group is taking steps to increase awareness of Indigenous people in our communities and workplaces. Stacey Schorr, Director of Government Affairs at Direct Energy and a member of RISE, noticed gaps in how the unique needs of Indigenous communities were being met. 

RISE saw an opportunity to improve relationships with Indigenous communities and recognized the need for more education and awareness at work. Colleen Geddes, a Customer Experience Analyst at NRG and a member of RISE, believes that it is important for organizations to have conversations that incorporate diversity, equity, and inclusion in order to better understand and address the unique cultural, historical, and social experiences of Indigenous communities.

RISE also acknowledges the significance of the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples in their mission to educate and bring attention to the culture and unique challenges of Indigenous people.

“The day provides an opportunity to educate the public about the rich cultural heritage, traditions, and contributions of the Indigenous community. It amplifies their voices to remind people of the struggles for the rights and well-being of Indigenous people while celebrating their resilience,” said Geddes. 

“Indigenous worldviews often have the philosophy of interconnectedness and belonging,” says Geddes. “With the foundation that we are all related, the group then becomes accountable for each of their actions. Each child, youth, adult, and elder has a role and a responsibility to each other and the community.”

By recognizing Indigenous cultures and acknowledging past wrongdoings, we can move towards a more just future. Through joint efforts, we can strive for a more inclusive future where the rights, cultures, and contributions of all individuals are appreciated and respected. If you are considering getting involved, Blaschke suggests that Heart of America accepts general donations to help fund projects and purchase products for students and their families.


Click here if you would like to shop and for education kits.