4-Jun-17-2024-06-53-06-3850-PMAs Populus Group prepares to celebrate Juneteenth by closing our offices, we reflect on the journey of growth and change that has brought us to this point. This year marks a significant milestone as we observe a full day off to honor the holiday's profound significance in American history. While Juneteenth became a federal holiday in 2021, we’ve had a slow progression at PG to get to where we are today. We want to share our humble journey as a reminder that change takes time and the dedication of people willing to see it happen. Real change takes work and sometimes you have to get it wrong before you get it right.

"Working for an organization that actually listens to the voice of their employees and implements appropriate change is refreshing. At PG, we've come a long way from where we started and are continuously evolving through a culture of active listening and learning. This commitment not only improves our work in fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion but positively influences our broader community as well." - Taniesha Thomas, Head of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Our delivery department—the largest at PG—has truly embodied the spirit of Juneteenth and pushed for this change. While closing offices for a day seems like a simple accommodation, there is a lot that needs to happen behind the scenes to coordinate that. By paying attention to and supporting various perspectives, leaders overcame practical obstacles and achieved a full day off, making every member feel valued and respected. Lori Blakey, VP of Delivery, captures this commitment well, saying, “It was incredibly important to us to ensure every member of our community was given the time and space to honor this holiday. One of our core values at PG is to find a way. We worked as a team to do just that. Our climbers are able to recognize Juneteenth in a meaningful way, while ensuring that our contractors are still cared for throughout the week.” This approach not only demonstrates our collective ability to effect change, but also exemplifies our actionable steps towards inclusivity and honoring the essence of Juneteenth.


Our commitment to Juneteenth is reflected in how we engage with clients, ensuring that our market presence resonates with the values of equity and inclusivity. Mario Lambert, our VP of Sales, emphasizes this commitment from his perspective: "As a minority and veteran-owned business, we understand the significance of our responsibility in the space of DE&I". Acknowledging the importance of Juneteenth creates a ripple effect that encourages others in the marketplace to do the same. It's through these deliberate actions that we contribute to a broader movement of change, one that honors the past while shaping a more inclusive future.

Juneteenth is a time for reflection, education, and action. It’s a time to uplift the Black community, looking back at the strides we've made and looking forward to the path we aim to tread. Our commitment to change is not just about a single day; it's about an ongoing dedication to evolving our practices and creating a workplace that truly values diversity, equity, and inclusivity. We are proud of the work we've done to get it right, and we're grateful for the diligent efforts of our community that have made this possible. By detailing these efforts, we hope to inspire others to join us in this pursuit, making every Juneteenth a milestone on the journey to true inclusivity.


As we celebrate Juneteenth, we do so with the recognition that our journey towards diversity, equity, and inclusion is ongoing. "I’m proud of our DEI journey as an organization. We’ve learned to pace ourselves for the marathon. It’s not always about how fast we’re going but the continuous growth we’re having towards transformational and impactful positive change," reflects Taniesha Thomas, our Head of DEI. A full day off is important, but we must also remain committed to listening to the voices of our employees, to learning from our shared history, and to taking actionable steps towards an equitable future. This Juneteenth, let's come together as a community, as a company, and as a nation to honor the spirit of freedom and the ongoing fight for justice. Let's make change happen, not just today, but every day.