After fifteen years with Verité, I am moving on to take a new position with Humanity United. I will remain on the Verité Board of Directors, and thus be able to continue to enjoy and support this organization’s great work.
The new role at Humanity United offers the chance to make more resources available to innovators and change-makers in the supply chain accountability and transparency spaces. We aim to scale the change that Verité and others have been working towards for decades – so the opportunity felt too good to pass up.
I have loved working at Verité, so my decision to leave has been a difficult one. The organization is more impactful and stronger than ever. I am particularly proud of our role in bringing business to a deeper engagement with the systemic problem of forced labor by leveraging a unique combination of supply chain consulting and policy advocacy. The risks that accompany labor migration, which Verité first highlighted in the late 1990s, are beginning to receive the attention they demand from corporations and governments. We have helped companies take massive steps forward to address systemic child labor. Our direct engagement with workers through helplines and online education programs in China and Southeast Asia proves the effectiveness of providing workers with resources that allow them to protect and advocate for themselves. We have embarked on exciting and promising partnerships to pioneer the use of technology to expand our scope and extend our impact.
At Verité I have had the privilege to work with people around the world whose dedication, intelligence, insight and good-humor inspires me each day. Staff at our Regional Offices in Southeast Asia, China, India and Bangladesh combine patience and impatience in ways that challenge entrenched powers for the good of vulnerable workers. My treasured colleagues in North America and Europe are brilliant, tireless and optimistic. I have had the opportunity to work with people in the corporate sector who are trying to upend the sourcing paradigm by ensuring that the voices of workers are integrated in decision-making. I have been supported, guided and challenged by our dedicated Board of Directors. I have had the great fortune to collaborate with others in the NGO community, particularly friends I have made through the Skoll Foundation and Schwab Foundation networks, who have inspired, educated and entertained me in equal measure.
A search for a new CEO is underway, managed by Waldron & Company. In the meantime, we enjoy continuity as a result of the on-going presence of our exceptional senior management team. Indeed we are adding new staffers to strengthen our field work and meet the increasing demand for our services. I’m particularly grateful to our long-time colleague Shawn MacDonald for agreeing to serve as Interim Executive Director. Shawn has led Verité’s highly-impactful research and policy advocacy efforts for over a decade. He is well-known to our partners in the Alliance to End Slavery and Trafficking (ATEST) our allies in the NGO community and to policy makers in the Federal Government. We look forward to introducing him to others in the near future.
I look forward to remaining in touch in my new Board role at Verité, as well as my new job at Humanity United. I am deeply grateful for the support and collaboration Verité has received during my time here.