Student Q&A: Integrating Pro-Equity, Anti-Racism Principles In Job and Internship Searches

Brown CareerLAB and Watson Institute
, South Common Room 256

The Watson Institute and Brown CareerLAB invite students to meet with the inaugural director of the Washington State Office of Equity, Dr. Karen Johnson, and Chief Diversity Officer of Publicis Groupe US, Geraldine White, for a discussion about how to integrate Pro-Equity, Anti-Racism (PEAR) principles and practices into job and internship searches. What are the best questions to ask when evaluating a potential employer? Are there code words in job or internship postings to look for or avoid? Johnson and White will address these and other student questions regarding PEAR.

Dr. Karen A. Johnson, she.her.Beloved, perhaps best known as an inspiring, authentic, servant leader who keeps it real and 100, has decades of experience in both managerial and leadership roles in the non-profit sector and in federal and state government.

The mission of the Washington State Office of Equity is to promote equitable access to opportunities, power, and resources that reduce disparities statewide and improve outcomes across state government. She leads a team of brilliant ones who work with agencies and communities to implement the state’s five-year Pro-Equity, Anti-Racism ecosystem strategic plan designed to bridge opportunity gaps and reduce disparities so everyone in Washington has full access to health, wealth, and well-being.

Karen holds a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy, a master’s in public administration, and doctorate in Urban Services. She is a Certified Diversity Executive and member of the 2018 Leadership Women America cohort.


As Chief Diversity Officer of Publicis Groupe US, Geraldine White is tasked with leading Publicis Groupe’s DE&I work with a focus on elevating talent experiences; improving systems, policies and practices to create more equity; enabling long-term systemic change and continually fostering an inclusive environment for all identities,communities and facets of intersectionality within the Publicis Groupe network.

Having spent the last 15 years with Publicis Groupe, Geraldine was most recently the Head of Diversity & Inclusion in North America for Publicis Sapient prior to her elevation to Chief Diversity Officer. At Sapient she led the development & implementation of a global DE&I strategy, helping to change behaviors and create more inclusive mindsets and leadership; launched and led the organization’s Business Resource Groupe (BRG) landscape for North America and its Global Black Talent Taskforce; advanced organizational equity; and served as a member of the Braintrust leadership team for the Publicis Groupe’s TEI Council.

A valued subject matter expert, thought leader, board member and community advocate, she has spoken in various forums including New York Advertising Week, MediaVillage’s Advancing Diversity Honors week, IAB ALM and Pharell Williams’ Mighty Dream Forum, 4A’s Equity and Inclusion Congress, has been quoted in Forbes, Boston Globe, Adweek, Ad Age, and more; and has been honored as a She Runs It Working Mother of the Year Trailblazer, honoring how she shows up so consistently in all of her roles & a Changing the Game honoree for her impact in organizational change. Outside of the office, Geraldine is a devoted mom of four, a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Dress for Success career counselor volunteer, central council delegate for her local school district, and a member of the district’s diversity council.

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