Fortune 500 executives, media personalities commit nearly $1 million to building an inclusive workforce during night to remember
NEW YORK — Upwardly Global – the leading national non-profit helping immigrants and refugees restart their careers in the U.S. – hosted its Equity in Action: Beyond Welcome gala on Wednesday, October 12, 2022 at the Tribeca Rooftop + 360 in Manhattan. The sold-out event honored executives from Fortune 500 companies breaking ground in their commitment to a more inclusive workforce for professional immigrants and refugees.
The 400-person crowd, which included executives from NBCUniversal, Warner Bros. Discovery, and Paramount, helped raise nearly $1 million toward training programs and career pathways for professional immigrants and refugees. A virtual gala featuring the honorees will occur Oct. 26.
“We are back to work, we are back to the office, and we are moving forward to build a more inclusive workforce and country – that has a place for immigrants, refugees and for all of us – and that is better for it,” said Upwardly Global CEO and President Jina Krause-Vilmar. “Equity in Action is our commitment to honor and support diversity and belonging at work and in our communities.”
The gala celebrated a year’s worth of triumphs and ushered in another year of advancing equity for the 2.3 million professional immigrants and refugees underemployed here in the U.S. The gala’s theme, Equity in Action, nodded to Upwardly Global’s mission – to break down employment barriers for immigrants and refugees with international credentials and training.
“It is so amazing to be back in person with everyone – finally,” said Dr. Wendy Osefo, event host and star of Bravo’s Real Housewives of Potomac. “Upwardly Global is true to their mission. They are about helping people, and not just individual people but future generations. That’s when you’re able to transform societies – making sure generations to come will not face the same challenges.”
The event highlighted honorees Krishan Bhatia, President & Chief Business Officer at NBCUniversal, Dr. Steven J. Corwin, President and CEO of NewYork-Presbyterian, Katrina Cukaj, advertising and media executive, and Dr. Mohammad Sediq Hazratzai, Principal Investigator/Program Director at the Public Health Institute. The event’s co-chairs included Ravi Chanmugam, Senior Managing Director at Accenture Strategy, Tony Goncalves, former Chief Revenue Officer at WarnerMedia, and Michael E. Kassan, founder and CEO at MediaLink.
Fortune 500 executives and media personalities captivated the crowd with their remarks alongside moving stories of immigrants and refugees who overcame immense challenges to find skill-aligned work in the U.S. Upwardly Global’s network of professional immigrants and refugees add over $400 million to the economy each year, a $40 return on each $1 donation invested.
For those who missed the in-person event, tune in for the free virtual gala on October 26, 2022 at 7:30 p.m. E.T. that will feature the same industry leaders and stars. Find more photos from the gala here.
Upwardly Global is a national nonprofit whose mission is to eliminate employment barriers for immigrant and refugee professionals, and advance the inclusion of their skills into the U.S. economy.