Henry Louis Taylor Joins U.S. Diversity Leaders in Discussion on Supplier Diversity


Professor Henry Louis Taylor Jr., at a recent True Blue Inclusion conference, addresses the relationship of supplier diversity and community wealth and job creation for distressed communities. Photo courtesy of True Blue Inclusion

Published July 8, 2013

Henry Louis Taylor Jr., professor of urban and regional planning and director of the Center for Urban Studies, discussed the relationship of supplier diversity to community wealth and the regeneration of distressed communities at a recent conference sponsored by True Blue Inclusion, a research and consultancy supporting diversity leaders across the U.S.

True Blue Inclusion’s “The Economics of Comprehensive Community Wealth and Job Creation Initiatives” gathering, held in Houston, Texas, on June 17, engaged participants and guests in an open dialogue with key influencers regarding the development of sustainable community wealth and job creation via a comprehensive supplier diversity strategy. The conversation connected leading practitioners, academics and thinkers around an agenda designed to provoke new thinking on supplier diversity.

Taylor addressed the potential of comprehensive supplier diversity in catalyzing the production of community wealth and jobs creation for distressed communities. He cited original policies from the 1960s designed to support minority business ownership towards the development of community wealth and jobs in struggling, primarily urban communities. Arguing these tenets still hold true, Taylor said supplier diversity initiatives and Chief Diversity Officers have a major role to play in the regeneration of distressed communities. Moving forward, Taylor recommends that Chief Diversity Officers determine measures of impact for supplier diversity initiatives. In closing, Taylor offered a multi-pronged strategy for developing supplier diversity programs:

  • Develop a scoping project to determine the current role that supplier diversity programs are playing, as well as outline the desired role for impact in the community
  • Determine the best questions and performance indicators to assess the effectiveness of the supported initiatives
  • Measure those selected metrics with consistency
  • Design an efficient feedback loop