SAN FRANCISCO, June 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Arcadis has named Leamon J. Abrams its first-ever director of diversity, equity and belonging in North America. In this role, Abrams will lead the organization's efforts to become a more inclusive, safe and equitable work environment following nationwide demand for racial justice.
Abrams brings more than 30 years of public -and private-sector experience leading diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) initiatives for organizations such as the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission, Starbucks Coffee, Parsons and more. Immediately prior to joining Arcadis, he led the diversity practice at the Allen Group, an African-American woman-owned project management company. In this role, he helped develop and implement DE&I strategies for engineering, design and construction teams at organizations such as Bay Area Rapid Transit and San Francisco International Airport.
"Our industry needs to evolve to address the challenges of the communities we serve," said Nana Berchie, Arcadis' global people director for diversity, inclusion and belonging and employee experience. "Leamon's expertise driving DE&I through organizations is a welcome addition to Arcadis' team, and it will be pivotal in helping us grow as a company that is inclusive and embraces all Arcadians, clients and industry partners equitably."
Prior to hiring Abrams, Arcadis' DE&I efforts in North America were powered primarily through a regional committee and employee affinity groups that championed racial and social equity in public services, workforce development and environmental justice. Abrams will work closely with these groups to drive impactful change across the company and the industry.
"In my interview exchanges with several Arcadians, I was inspired by a group of people committed to doing well by doing good," said Abrams. "I love connecting the engineering and design work we do to diverse stakeholders through community partnerships and advocacy."
Based in San Francisco, Abrams will report to Berchie and work closely with the North American leadership team. Arcadis first began its national search for a regional diversity leader in mid-2020, in response to increased employee and community calls for change.
Arcadis is the leading global design & consultancy organization for natural and built assets. We maximize impact for our clients and the communities they serve by providing effective solutions through sustainable outcomes, focus and scale, and digitalization. We are over 27,000 people, active in more than 70 countries that generate €3.3 billion in revenues. We support UN-Habitat with knowledge and expertise to improve the quality of life in rapidly growing cities around the world. www.arcadis.com