Executive Director, Diversity and Inclusion, Comcast
Arias directs Comcast’s diversity program strategy across all corporate and business units, including Comcast Cable, NBCU and Comcast-Spectacor, with a focus on governance, workforce, supplier diversity, programming and community investment. Her strategic leadership has led to a number of achievements for Comcast, including Latina Style magazine’s coveted award for Company of the Year and “The Best Place to Work for Latinas” and achieving a perfect score on the 2013 Corporate Equality Index. “Because the digital divide disproportionately impacts low-income communities and communities of color, championing digital access and education for our young people is a priority at Comcast,” she says.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
Building and watching change happen in real-time. It’s not often that you get a chance to build a company-wide diversity and inclusion strategy that links and bridges to every business unit, builds partnerships externally, and has a historic impact on an amazing company like Comcast-NBCUniversal.
Best trick for maintaining the personal-professional life balance?
Decide what’s important to you, power protect time for that and those you love, and let go of the guilt that comes with trying to be “Superwoman.” Having worked since I was 13 (including working my way through law school), I learned to frequently self-evaluate, re-prioritize, and make tough decisions early about what I could do — versus what I “should do.” There are sacrifices along the way, but they are worth it. When I was younger, I would only join one Board so that I could actively participate, work, and attend my children’s events. Now that my children are in college or working, I’ve redirected my time to more Board work, mentoring, and traveling to my children, who are all over the country.
What’s been the biggest story in cable this year?
Because the digital divide disproportionately impacts low-income communities and communities of color (which exacerbates less access to education, jobs, healthcare, news, and information) championing digital access and education for our young people is a priority at Comcast. We are hopeful that, among the 220,000 Internet Essentials program families (or 900,000 Americans) we have served through our low cost Internet service, a computer, and free digital literacy training that we’re helping bridge the digital divide. Internet Essentials is our company’s concerted effort to invest very early in building a pipeline of diverse, emerging talent channeled first, by basic access and training on the power of the Internet.