Celebrating Pride all year

By Antonio Xu Liu

2019 was a historic year for the LGBTQ+ community – specifically as we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall Riots, the events that ignited the fight for equality for the LGBTQ+ community. The celebration of half a century of advocacy and progress took place via a global celebration with an attendance of 4.5 million attendees at World Pride this past June in New York City, also marking another milestone – the first time World Pride was held in the United States.

National Grid showed up for its team members and the communities that it serves and represents by becoming a first-time Bronze Sponsor of the NYC Pride March, and holding various events throughout all its jurisdictions. Relive Pride weekend with us by watching our World Pride video – and read below some of the events that we held!

Pride Flag Raisings – Hundreds of employees attended flag raising ceremonies in ResWoods, Metrotech, Syracuse, Melville, Hicksville, Brooklyn, and Rhode Island in the US and Warwick, Solihull, and Workingham in the UK.

Flag raisings at our Res Woods, Providence, Syracuse and MetroTech Center offices.

2019 Central NY Pride Parade, Syracuse, NY
– National Grid was corporate sponsor for the 2019 Central NY Pride Parade in Syracuse, NY. Colleagues and their family and friends marched alongside an electric company-branded vehicle in the parade and gave away 300+ branded items. The event has been supported in the past and we were excited show support within the local community as a repeat sponsor.

British Ambassador’s Capital Pride Reception, Washington, D.C. – National Grid’s roots in the UK has helped build a lasting relationship with the British Embassy.  We sponsored the invitation-only British Ambassador’s 2019 Capital Pride Reception in Washington D.C. and various National Grid leaders and Pride members attended.  Neil Proudman, VP Capital Delivery Programs, addressed all attendees and gave remarks on behalf of National Grid. 

Attendees at the British Ambassador’s Capital Pride Reception.

LGBT Network Lunch-and-Learn
, Brooklyn and Melville, NY – National Grid partnered with the LGBT Network in Downstate New York to host a Lunch-and-learn to offer a learning opportunity to team members in our Downstate New York Facilities to provide the opportunity to learn about inclusion within the LGBT community, and how to become a “Pronouns Champion”!

UK Ambassador to the UN and British Consulate-General World Pride Reception, New York, NY – National Grid sponsored the invitation-only World Pride reception hosted by the UK Ambassador to the UN at the British Consulate-General in New York, NY. Various senior leaders and Pride members attended including Neil Proudman, VP Capital Delivery Programs, who spoke at the event.

National Grid World Pride Reception and Kick-Off, New York, NY – National Grid hosted an invitation-only reception and kick-off event in Brooklyn, NY with 300 people in attendance. Key stakeholders attended including: local NYC elected officials, external partners, senior leadership, PrideUS and PrideUK members and all US-ERG leaders. The event kicked off WorldPride, introduced and celebrated National Grid’s global Pride brand, and echoed our company’s commitment to inclusion and diversity.

Photos from the National Grid World Pride Reception and Kick-off in Brooklyn, NY.

PrideFest (World Pride Festival
), New York, NY – As part of our sponsorship, National Grid staffed a booth with 50+ volunteers and invited the public to participate in an activity—What does Pride mean to you? –as well as hand out giveaways.  Talent Acquisition shared information on National Grid to build our employment brand and collect information of potential candidates.   Impressions were raised via: 5000+ National Grid branded bookbag giveaways, National Grid printed on back of 3000+ World Pride volunteer and staff t-shirts, logo inclusion on World Pride website and social media banners, and verbal recognition on site.  PrideFest was attended by 500,000 participants. 

Volunteers of all backgrounds smiling at PrideFest in New York City for World Pride!

World Pride March, New York, NY
–Two hundred participants including National Grid colleagues and their family and friends marched 2 miles alongside 150,000 other marchers and 150+ other corporate groups to a spectating crowd of 4.5+ million.  The marchers wore National Grid branded t-shirts alongside a National Grid branded electric vehicle, waving and giving out 500+ National Grid branded flags and 100,000+ other giveaways.

Marchers proudly cheering as they march through the streets of Manhattan to represent National Grid!

A Day of Learning
– The Inclusion & Diversity team hosted two unique inclusive learning opportunities in Metrotech Center. Over 100 participants attended the sessions. Both workshops addressed allyship and advocacy, not only for the LGBTQIA+ population, but for all marginalized communities amongst us.

National Coming Out Day (NCOD) and LGBT History Month (US) – National Grid celebrated National Coming Out Day and LGBTQIA+ History Month in the US by launching a global online platform where employees shared their coming out stories via Yammer. Additionally, we gave out rainbow ribbons that the LGBT network provided us – for all employees to show their support to the LGBTQIA+ community. Lastly, I&D partnered with Vice President of Capital Programs, Neil Proudman to host Ally workshops in three jurisdictions – as an effort to educate attendees about allyship through an interactive discussion!

All the success of these events were made possible through the help of volunteers and members of the PrideUS and PrideUK ERG, as well as the support of all other ERGs! To find out more ways about how to become more involved, please reach out to us at PrideUS@nationalgrid.com.


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