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NSCA Announces DEI Action Council and Chief Diversity Officer Resource

DEI Action Council
(Image credit: NSCA)

NSCA (opens in new tab), the leading not-for-profit association representing the commercial integration industry, is announcing a rebranding of Ignite 2.0, a committee focused on improving diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the integration industry: It’s now called the NSCA DEI Action Council.

The Ignite 2.0 committee launched in Summer 2020 and was born out of NSCA’s Ignite program, which reaches educators, students, and jobseekers to inform, educate, and foster recruitment possibilities for careers in the commercial electronics systems industry. Ignite 2.0 has been focused on inspiring and enabling NSCA members (opens in new tab)—individuals and organizations—to embrace the concepts and practices of diversity, equity, and inclusion.


(Image credit: NSCA)

While maintaining the recruiting elements of Ignite, Ignite 2.0 expanded to focus on societal injustices and inequities as well. Now called the NSCA DEI Action Council, it takes on an additional objective of providing members with the foresight and knowledge needed to instill inclusivity and diversity (and realize the business benefits of doing so).

“The name ‘NSCA DEI Action Council’ speaks directly to our objectives,” explained NSCA executive director Tom LeBlanc, who is also NSCA’s DEI Action Council liaison. “There should be no ambiguity. The 10 council members decided to rebrand to help us build awareness of DEI and maximize the impact of the resources we’re creating for integrators.”

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The NSCA DEI Action Council aims to make a substantive impact on the integration market. Improving the industry’s diversity across age, gender, race, religion, identity, and experience is important—but it doesn’t stop there. Inclusivity and equity are issues of humanity. For an industry to be relevant, it must progress by embracing and espousing the core values of humanity, which are the bedrock of a successful organization.

“As companies scramble to remain relevant and viable, we need resources and advice on how to make sure all the doors to success are open,” said Bruce Kaufmann, president and CEO at Human Circuit and an NSCA DEI Action Council member. “The DEI Action Council provides NSCA members with valuable information and resources to overcome potential obstacles to success.”


(Image credit: livingHR)

For example, NSCA is also announcing a new Member Advisory Council partnership with livingHR, an agency that works with companies to make work more human for everyone by building inclusive cultures, optimizing talent, and humanizing experiences. NSCA members can participate in tiered livingHR and NSCA exclusive partnership solutions to take quantitative steps toward transforming diversity, equity, and inclusion as a critical part of their company cultures.

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“Many large companies employ chief diversity officers to provide DEI checks and balances within their organizations, but most NSCA members aren’t likely to budget for that,” said Mike Abernathy, NSCA’s director of business resources. “Including livingHR as a new business accelerator is a substantive alternative that NSCA members can more reasonably afford.”

NSCA chose livingHR due to its track record of working with companies to balance DEI and business objectives. “Organizations that invest in DEI are doing the right thing for humans while outperforming others, grabbing market share and loyalty from both talent and customers while adding gains to humanity,” said livingHR CEO Keri Higgins-Bigelow.

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The NSCA DEI Action Council presented a keynote at NSCA’s 2021 virtual Business & Leadership Conference, which challenged NSCA members to recognize business-stifling inequities within their organizations.  A subsequent DEI workshop for integrators helped companies lay out next steps to improve DEI cultures. Additional DEI content will be featured at the 2022 Business & Leadership Conference, which runs Feb. 23-25 in Irving, TX.

The NSCA DEI Action Council meets biweekly to collaborate on steps and resources it can bring to the integration industry to improve DEI. Council members include:

In addition, NSCA’s Essentials Online Library includes a DEI section with articles and tools to help integrators make an impact. To stay updated on NSCA DEI Action Council resources or to join the DEI Action Council community, visit here (opens in new tab).

The staff of Systems Contractor News serves the AV integration industry with thorough news analysis, trend reports, and the latest product and technology information—delivered to an audience of decision-makers.