J.D. Myers, II

Myers leads a region with a lot of history at Cox. Cox Virginia was where president Pat Esser started his career more than 40 years ago, and it’s the birthplace of Cox Business. Myers has shored up a variety of strategic partnerships, including with Pharrell’s newly established Something in the Water Festival, which featured a Cox Gigablast Gaming Lounge. He recently received the Junior Achievement of Hampton Roads Lifetime Achievement Award and was inducted into the Hampton Roads Business Hall of Fame. Companies that have made the first step of diversity and inclusion initiatives now need to transition to embrace equity, he says. “Equity happens when all employees, regardless of their backgrounds, have equal access to growth opportunities,” says Myers. 

The conversation about racial injustice in 2020 has been… 400 years past due. The conversation is uncomfortable, painful and troubling, but by us addressing the issues head on I’m hopeful and inspired.

In what ways can companies best show a sincere commitment to diversity and inclusion?
Diversity and Inclusion initiatives are the first step, but now we need to transition and embrace Equity. Equity happens when all employees, regardless of their backgrounds, have equal access to growth opportunities. Actions speak louder than words ever will, and companies must start walking the talk if they are serious about their commitment.

How have you been a champion of diversity & inclusion in your professional life?
For the past 14 years, I’ve helped lead Cox’s Virginia Region Diversity & Inclusion Council and created the first Cox Millennial Council. This year, I’ve made the commitment to share what it’s like for me personally as a Black man. By sharing the pain and vulnerability of my own experience, I hope to inspire other young Black men and validate that it’s OK to have these difficult conversations in the workplace.

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