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Pride Month 2024: Celebrating Pride Globally Starts Locally

Kate Vance Kate Vance
Global DEI Program Lead, Hitachi Digital, Louisville, KY, United States

June 25, 2024

I read recently that last year, Pride and other LGBTQIA+ visibility events were held in over 100 UN member states worldwide. It made me really, well – proud – to hear that. And to know how much progress is being made to support so many people on a global basis.

Of course, as the saying goes, when it comes to making things happen you need to “think globally; act locally…”

True to that, when it comes to fostering diversity and inclusivity at Hitachi Vantara, it also makes me proud to say we’re approaching it both ways. And there’s no better way to showcase how than to hear it from some of our people. Especially those involved in our Rainbow Connection employee resource group (ERG). Like me!

I’m Kate Vance, Nice to Meet You

I’m Kate and I’m the Global DEI Program Lead at Hitachi Digital, including Hitachi Vantara, Hitachi Digital Services and Pentaho. I work with, support and have helped start a number of our ERGs, Rainbow Connection included. I’m also working with our talent acquisition team on ways to integrate DEI principles into the early stages of the employee lifecycle, ensuring these values are ingrained in our culture from the beginning.

Beyond work, I am a stepmother of three and VP of the Board of Directors of LYG, the Louisville Youth Group, a local nonprofit for young LGBTQIA+ folks in my community. I’m also a traveler, animal lover and home renovator!

What Celebrating Pride Means to Me

Pride Month is a time to honor and celebrate those who have lived authentically and unapologetically. And in general, being true to who you are and your own identity. It’s also an opportunity to inspire those who are still on their journey of self-discovery and acceptance. And/or trying to figure it all out.

Welcoming LGBTQIA+ Talent and Fostering Inclusivity

For anyone considering coming to Hitachi, I have to emphasize our supportive culture. In addition to welcoming members of the LGBTQIA+ community, the Rainbow Connection is wide open to an increasing number of allies who want to learn and be more supportive of their friends and colleagues.

I think It’s also important that companies talk about LGBTQIA+ issues and provide visible safety signals (in personal workspaces and in their digital presence). And not just during June/Pride Month, but year-round. That means producing and sharing content that reflects and supports diversity and how people can find their community within the organization.

Visibility and accessibility of inclusive content is really crucial for attracting diverse talent.

Encouraging Community Engagement

Speaking of acting locally, I encourage people to support and get involved in organizations where they live. Small nonprofits benefit greatly from the time and talent of local volunteers. Being active in your community, wherever or whatever that may be, helps create thriving, safe spaces for everyone.

On a personal basis, my favorite part of working with LYG/Louisville Youth Group is seeing adults who came through the program come back as mentors or board members, giving back to the organization that helped them when they were young. And to see the local youth community flourish and make the programs grow further.

Look for Your Role Models and Be One, too

Despite my confident and extroverted demeanor at work, I’ve struggled with my own mental health challenges, including anxiety and bipolar disorder. This fuels my passion for supporting employee mental and social well-being. It’s something I’ve had a hard time talking about over the years. One reason why I admire people in marginalized groups who live openly with pride. They are truly great role models.

So that’s a bit of my personal story. And it continues to evolve every day. Check back here again soon and we’ll bring you further perspective from other members of the Rainbow Connection.

And happy Pride Month. Or maybe I should say Pride Year!


Inspiring Pride in All of Us (Pride Month 2024)

Hitachi Vantara Earns “2022 Best Place to Work for LGBTQ+ Equality” Recognition

We Stand Committed to Cultivating a Workplace Where ALL Are Welcome

Creating a Sustainable Future for All

    Kate Vance

    Kate Vance

    As the Global DEI Program Lead at Hitachi Digital – including Hitachi Vantara, Hitachi Digital Services and Pentaho – Kate is focused on change, culture and diversity in the office of DEI. She is involved in developing strategy and executing initiatives to strengthen inclusivity and employee engagement.