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Southern Company issues inaugural Transformation Report detailing equity work

Diverse hiring, comprehensive DE&I training, $66 million in giving to organizations working for social justice and further commitment to HBCUs some of actions taken over past year

Southern Company today issued its “2021 Transformation Report: Moving to Equity,” detailing its commitment to equity and actions taken to further advance equity within the company and its communities. Southern Company recognizes there is still work to do and is continuing to move boldly forward with its diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) work.

Key DE&I takeaways from the report include:

  • Underrepresented groups, including women and people of color, made up 58% of hires in 2021.
  •  100% of Southern Company operating companies have launched comprehensive DE&I learning programs and implemented inclusivity training for all new leaders.
  • Southern Company, its operating companies and their foundations donated $66 million in 2021 to more than 1,000 organizations working to advance racial equity and social justice.  In total, the Southern Company system plans to invest $225 million through 2025 to continue this important work.
  • Of the $50 million Southern Company committed to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in January 2020, $40 million has now been pledged. That includes working with Apple to launch the Propel Center, a business incubator and innovation hub headquartered in Atlanta, and funding scholarships, endowments and paid internships for HBCU students.

“Across Southern Company, we are fully committed to equity,” said CEO Tom Fanning. “This collective commitment among our 28,000 employees seeks to prevent racial disparities where they exist and ensure equitable access, opportunities and outcomes for all. Our goal of diversity, equity and inclusion aims to ensure all groups, and especially historically underrepresented and marginalized groups, are well represented, included and fairly treated within all levels of our organization and in our communities.”

Southern Company launched its Moving to Equity framework in 2020 amid national conversations on racism and inequality. After a period of listening, learning and understanding, the Southern Company Management Council decided to focus efforts on five key areas: talent, work environment, community, political engagement and supplier diversity.

The Transformation Report reiterates Southern Company’s commitments to these pillars, tracks progress of long-term goals, highlights key results and outlines how the company has and will continue to hold itself accountable while Moving to Equity.

“Make no mistake, this report is a beginning,” Fanning said. “I want these commitments to be an enduring reflection of Our Values and for Southern Company to serve as a guiding light in our communities, our industry, our nation and around the world among those companies seeking change.”