February is Black History Month – a month dedicated to educating and celebrating the significant achievements Black people have made to our nation and the rest of the world. While celebrating Black culture, heritage, and history, it is equally important that we share uplifting stories about Black Families' experiences who epitomize power, strength, and resilience – the backbone of healthy, thriving Black communities.
This year's Black History Month national theme is the Black Family: Representation, Identity, and Diversity.The Association for the Study of African American Life and History chose this theme because of the Black families' centuries-long degradation in America. The negative portrayals of Black families have created a one-dimensional view that is too often widely accepted as the norm when there's so much more beauty and depth to the Black family.
Telling our own story
To celebrate Black History Month, the Black Twilions employee resource group put together a month-long program that promotes community service, celebrates historical Black figures, spotlights Black families, uplifts, and empowers our Black employees to thrive. Below are some of today's Black Twilions who share their unique perspectives on how being raised in a Black family helped inspire, shape, and influence their lives and career paths.
Taiwo Akande: Meet the Akande Family
Commercial Contracts Administrator
New York, NY
"My family has influenced my career and work ethic by showing me how to work hard every day. They've shown me how to go for my goals and show my full self at work, and have allowed me to be myself. I work hard every day because of them. They keep me going."
Alexis Dexter: Meet the Dexter Family
Sales Contracts Operations Manager
New York, NY
“My parents have been a huge influence on my career. They both recently retired after working over 30+ years in their respective careers and the dedication, hard work, and work ethic they brought to work every day they instilled in me. I try to come to work with that same intensity and passion, and I thank them for it."
George Everly: Meet the Everly Family
Growth Account Enterprise
San Francisco, CA
"Having a family has increased my focus, drive, and motivation. As it pertains to my career, it has given me every reason to want to grow, develop and prosper. Family is why I landed at Twilio."
Darryl Bufford: Meet the Bufford Family
Customer Success Manager
"My father was strict and unwavering, but he kept me from being deterred from my goals and aspirations. I can't imagine where I would be without the discipline he instilled in me growing up. My mother is support personified; the sacrifices she made and the selflessness she exemplified are characteristics ingrained into who I am today.”
Marcus Battle: Meet the Battle Family
Senior Manager, Developer Voice
Remote Raleigh, NC
"My family has played a large part in my professional development, starting with my grandfather. He owned one of the largest moving companies in Raleigh, North Carolina. My mom was one of IBMs first senior-level Chief Diversity Officers back when IBM was big blue. Because of them, I got a lot of entrepreneurial advice, tech, and computer science exposure at an early age."
Investing in equity & anti-racism
At Twilio, we find it essential to uplift the voices, stories, and history (past, present, and future) of Black people. We are also keenly aware of the ongoing systemic obstacles Black people continue to face in this country. Part of honoring Black History Month is also addressing disparities and dismantling racist systems that the Black community faces daily. In 2020, Twilio committed to becoming an anti-racist organization and we are dedicated to addressing systemic racial inequities by leveraging our products, people, and resources to create a more just and equitable world.
Celebrating the diverse range of experiences and stories invite us all to find common ground that unites us and fuels innovation at Twilio. Check out our video celebrating the beauty of Black families at Twilio.
Are you interested in becoming a Twilion? See our current job openings.