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About the Employers 4 Equity Playbooks

The DSM USA 4 Equity Collective was formed as an initiative of Capital Crossroads in February 2021 to elevate Central Iowa’s commitment to equity by creating and implementing sustainable cross-sector action that drives measurable shifts in policy, systems, and practice. As part of the strategy to support businesses in Central Iowa, the Collective hired Arrowhead Consulting to help identify where employers need support with implementing equity practices in their organizations. Arrowhead Consulting conducted an Organizational Equity Practices Assessment (OEPA), an anonymous survey completed by 200 employers in the region. The assessment covered topics such as recruitment, retention, data collection, training, and more.

For more information on the questions included in each category, click here.

For more information on the questions included in each category, click here.

The results of the survey showed that many employers are committed to equity but many need additional resources and support. In response to this feedback, the DSM USA 4 Equity Collective recruited diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) experts across the region to develop tangible, actionable resource guides titled Employers 4 Equity Playbooks to help improve equity in organizations. The committees used the results of the OEPA to determine the focus of The Playbooks in order to be responsive to the needs of organizations in the region.

The Playbooks include promising practices for employers at different levels: Discovering, Exploring, and Leading. This allows organizations to identify the areas in which they want to grow and have different onramps for implementation. There are resources for organizations of various sizes and types that can be applied to achieve a variety of equity goals. The Playbooks also feature examples of how area employers have implemented these practices in their own organizations. Through the Employers 4 Equity Playbooks, Central Iowa organizations will have access to strategies that can be scaled and a network of support from peers who have had success with these efforts. 


The Employers 4 Equity Playbooks were developed by local experts who have experience in implementing these practices in their own organizations. These resources for our community are made possible through the time, commitment, and knowledge of the following individuals who served on committees:

  • Shaimaa Aly, Wells Fargo

  • Annie Brandt, Bank of America

  • Teree Caldwell-Johnson, Oakridge Neighborhood

  • Marta Codina, Wells Fargo

  • Marvin DeJear, Greater Des Moines Partnership

  • Angela Dethlefs-Trettin, Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines

  • Jacquie Easley, MercyOne

  • Keshia Fields, Polk County

  • Renee Hardman, Broadlawns

  • Matt Hauge, Polk County Housing Trust Fund

  • Micah Kiel, Wells Fargo (former)

  • Kristi Knous, Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines

  • Miriam Lewis, Principal Financial Group

  • Mike McCoy, NCMIC

  • Jo Christine Miles, Principal Financial Group

  • Julian Neely, United Way of Central Iowa

  • Beth Nigut, EMC Insurance

  • Manisha Paudel, City of Des Moines

  • Taylor Peterson, Principal Financial Group

  • Scott Raecker, Drake University

  • Juan Pablo Sanchez, Greater Des Moines Partnership

  • Heather Schott, Krause Group

  • Jade Song, ITHAKA

  • Elio Valenzuela, Principal Financial Group

  • Nina Vo, community member

  • Andrea Woodard, Greater Des Moines Partnership

  • Julie Yankey, SPPG

  • Amanda Young, Bankers Trust

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