By: Leah Murphy, Campbell’s Black Resource Group Chair + Technical Services Manager, Global Engineering
My Grandmother has a saying, “We come from good stock.” The “good stock” refers to the legacy of our ancestors. I consider the stock I come from a celebration of Black History.
I am different. I am a black woman with an engineering degree. I have spent most of my career in food manufacturing. I am a servant leader.
I am a triathlete. I am the mother of identical twin boys, Clark and Emory. They listen to NPR on the way to school with my daughter Adele. My amazing husband Cameron lovingly describes me as a nerd. I believe my best days are still ahead of me. I could go on about all the things about me that challenge stereotypes, but I’ll end it there.
When I started at Campbell, I was with the Process Engineering Group. I was secretly relieved that my version of different was actually a fit with the engineering community. When I was outside of the Tech Center and no one said hello to me in the hallway I was reminded that I was different yet again.
Until I joined Campbell’s Black Resource Group (BRG)
The BRG strives to positively impact every black employee and the broader Campbell culture. We are a resource for black employees to connect, network, build partnerships and influence Campbell culture. Our diversity is embraced, and “my different” is celebrated.
I am honored to chair the network in 2017. The BRG is proud to be a Campbell ID Network Innovator, leading the way in our desire to develop and advance our members. The BRG was the first ID Network to:
- Create a Leadership Academy for our high performing members, which focuses on career ownership and development
- Build, support and leverage partnerships with professional organizations focused on black talent and Campbell’s talent acquisition team
- Kick off BYOLs (Bring Your Own Lunch) in our Café, bringing members together in the spirit of strengthening our connections and community
Black History Month reminds us that we still have work to do
The BRG recently hosted a panel discussion with senior leaders on diversity at our world headquarters in Camden, N.J. It’s a conversation that may be uncomfortable for some—which is why it’s so important.
The culture has made progress with hiring diverse talent and embracing the efforts of our employee identity networks. As we live into our company Purpose, we still have more work to do.
At Campbell, we recently relaunched our values and one of my favorites is “Seek the Power of Different.” It’s what I believe we must do to drive sustainable change. Inclusion is not an initiative—but rather a competency. Diversity will be our secret weapon.
To close out Black History Month, we remain aware that who we are as black people is a constant celebration of those who have come before us and reinforces our obligation to be exactly who we are—different. And that is a beautiful thing.
At the end of the day, it’s bigger than any one of us. Diversity is at the core of our collective Campbell identity, where the combination of all of our differences are helping us define the future of real food.
I know if I were to introduce my grandmother to my work family, she would nod her head knowingly and say that my Campbell colleagues are “from good stock”.