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Henkel's Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Journey: Progress Guided by Our Pioneering Spirit

By Steven Essick, President Henkel North America

Henkel's Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Journey: Progress Guided by Our Pioneering Spirit

By Steven Essick, President Henkel North America

Published 01-26-23

Submitted by Henkel

Photo of a group of people with text "Imagine Differences bringing us closer together."

As we ready ourselves for what I believe will be a significant year in our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) journey, it is also important to reflect on our progress in 2022. Our pioneering spirit has made it possible for us to deliver for our customers, stakeholders, and communities, and I believe it is that same spirit and commitment to improvement that enables us to also be part of creating a more inclusive world.

DEI is an unwavering priority for our business. We continue to embed DEI in every aspect of what we do. Last year, we spent $93 million through our Supplier Diversity Program. Our purchasing power is one lever we can pull to help increase diversity across our value chain. Our brands are also finding unique ways to tackle social issues and we saw that work come to life through efforts like Got2B’s partnership with Ditch the Label to raise awareness of cyber-bullying and to help empower young people to be themselves. We also expanded our DEI team and welcomed Clayton Sinclair as our Director of DEI who is helping explore, develop and implement initiatives in partnership with our North America leadership team and DEI Council.

Our strength comes from our people. Henkel North America was once again named a Forbes Best Employer for Diversity and we received a Corporate Equality Index score of 95% from the Human Rights Campaign, acknowledging the strides we’ve made in our support for LGBTQ+ employees.

We also elevated the visibility of our Henkel Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), which provide the many voices at Henkel with opportunities to share perspectives and advice, generate dialogue, and advocate for positive change inside and outside of the company. This culminated in our first ERG symposium where ERG leaders came together to share resources, learnings and recommendations to expand their reach and impact. We also launched ERG Connect, a digital hub for employees to explore and join these peer groups.

Building opportunity beyond Henkel. We are grateful to the many partners across the U.S. and Canada who are helping build a more just and tolerant world. We are proud to be strengthening our partnerships with Asian Americans Advancing Justice, DisabilityIn, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, Women in Manufacturing, and so many others. Education also remains foundational to our DEI work and to creating a more equitable future for all. Last year Henkel welcomed over 250 students from 75 universities as interns with a strong focus on students from traditionally marginalized backgrounds and/or groups. We believe that by increasing access to learning opportunities, we can open more doors and foster a more diverse and inclusive workforce and society.

The impact we have made would not be possible without the enthusiastic participation of our employees. Being pioneers for the good of generations means working together to reimagine and improve life every day. We look forward to continuing this journey and advancing our DEI priorities in 2023 and beyond.

I invite you to learn more about our DEI journey.

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About Henkel in North America
In North America, Henkel operates across its three business units: Adhesive Technologies, Beauty Care, and Laundry & Home Care. Its portfolio of well-known consumer and industrial brands includes Schwarzkopf® hair care, Dial® soaps, Right Guard® antiperspirants, Persil®, Purex®, and all® laundry detergents, Snuggle® fabric softeners as well as Loctite®, Technomelt® and Bonderite® adhesives. With sales of around 6 billion US dollars (5 billion euros) in 2019, North America accounts for 26 percent of the company’s global sales. Henkel employs approximately 9,000 people across the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico. For more information, please visit, and on Twitter @Henkel_NA.

About Henkel
Henkel operates globally with a well-balanced and diversified portfolio. The company holds leading positions with its three business units in both industrial and consumer businesses thanks to strong brands, innovations and technologies. Henkel Adhesive Technologies is the global leader in the adhesives market – across all industry segments worldwide. In its Laundry & Home Care and Beauty Care businesses, Henkel holds leading positions in many markets and categories around the world. Founded in 1876, Henkel looks back on more than 140 years of success. In 2019, Henkel reported sales of more than 20 billion euros and adjusted operating profit of more than 3.2 billion euros. Henkel employs more than 52,000 people globally – a passionate and highly diverse team, united by a strong company culture, a common purpose to create sustainable value, and shared values. As a recognized leader in sustainability, Henkel holds top positions in many international indices and rankings. Henkel’s preferred shares are listed in the German stock index DAX. For more information, please visit

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