Recently, The Orchard formed The Council For Equity & Progressive Action (CEPA) to develop and implement innovative solutions that will advance globally shared goals of ensuring fair and inclusive spaces for all.
CEPA, a group of individuals who work at The Orchard, represent various business groups, regions, and points of view. The members will meet on a weekly basis to discuss ideas and work together along with various teams at The Orchard to develop an actionable roadmap to address racial equity within the company, industry, and greater society.
What’s behind the name? Equality and equity are not the same. CEPA seeks to increase Equity within The Orchard by building opportunities for underrepresented groups and ensure everyone is able to succeed. Progressive Action includes constructive conversations that CEPA will drive around internal and external issues and concerns around diversity and equity.
While CEPA is an organization for The Orchard employees to suggest ideas, bring up concerns, and get feedback for implementing equitable workplace changes, it will not take the place of HR related matters and employees should not rely on CEPA as the sole educational resource for racial equality and change.
All this and more was discussed on July 30, when CEPA hosted a Town Hall for all employees at The Orchard to introduce members, discuss focus areas, illustrate the scope of the Council, emphasize guiding principles, and map out the primary goals. Moving forward, as a collective, The Orchard will partake in mandatory quarterly Town Halls with CEPA to discuss progress.
At the start of the Town Hall, The Orchard’s CEO Brad Navin firmly addressed employees. “Racial equity across our organization is materially important to our collective success and we have to do more in order to effect positive and lasting change. CEPA, run by employees and for employees, will partner with all teams and the executive group to drive this initiative.”
He added, “I have always said a company is just a group of people. And people are diverse. We will, going forward, operate our business to ensure we make every effort to reflect that diversity in how we hire, promote, and lead our company now, and in the future.”
Each member discussed the three pillar focus areas of CEPA including minority representation, employee retention and elevation, and social reform. In further detail, they explained the immediate primary goals.
- Being a sounding board for individuals as well as the organization
- Fighting for equity in pay and hiring practices, promotions, and career advancement
- Recommending partners and vendors who are subject matter experts
- Ensuring all artists we represent are treated equitably
- Promoting culture of accountability and transparency for all employees at The Orchard that is free from retaliation
As conveyed during the Town Hall, the essence and core values of CEPA include discretion, freedom to speak one’s mind with honesty and directness, listening without judgement, allowing others to speak, education as a foundation, and always asking for assistance if you need it, because we’re all in this together. The ultimate goal is to bring transformative change, as transformation is pivotal to the continued progression of The Orchard, music industry, and greater society.
Meet The Council For Equity and Progressive Action:
Kiara Williams (NYC)
Manager, Human Resources
Cookie Pryce (London)
Senior Label Manager
Sammy Pisano (NYC)
Senior Manager, Account Management
Nikoo Sadr (Stockholm)
Director, Artist & Label Services, Nordics
Eddie Moses (NYC)
Associate Director, Account Management
Ashley Hall (NYC)
Label Manager, Artist & Label Services
Tyrone Scott (NYC)
Associate Legal Counsel, Business & Legal Affairs
Asmarina Zerabruk (NYC)
Senior Product Manager, Artist & Label Services
Mike Heyliger (NYC)
Director, Label Management