The MBA’s LGBT+ and Allies Club had the honor of representing HEC Paris at the annual Paris Pride parade on June 29. Thirty HEC Paris students, friends, partners, and staff braved the 35°C heat to walk the 5.5km between Montparnasse and Republique alongside L’Autre Cercle, an organization that advocates for LGBT rights in the workplace. Around 500,000 people joined the festivities in the French capital to celebrate diversity. There was music, dancing and a lot of great energy along the route.
Several HEC Paris alumni, future students, and other crowd members came up to us to voice their support for HEC’s presence at the parade. They said that it sent a very positive message to see us representing one of France’s most well-known business schools.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, which started as a result of a police raid on a gay bar in New York City’s Greenwich Village. LGBT people fought back against the police in a series of violent protests that marked the start of the gay liberation movement and modern fight for LGBT rights in the United States. To commemorate the Stonewall 50th anniversary, New York City hosted the bi-annual WorldPride, a global pride celebration that is hosted in a different city every year. The Stonewall 50 – WorldPride NYC 2019 took place on June 29 with 5 million people in attendance. Earlier in the month, New York City Police Commissioner James P. O’Neill issued a formal apology on behalf of the New York Police Department for its officers’ actions in 1969.
The LGBT+ and Allies Club wants to thank everyone who supported us on the day of the parade and who bought T-shirts! We sold 65 T-shirts for the parade, far surpassing our original goal, and plan to sell more this autumn.
The parade marked the kickoff event for the MBA Club’s new board members (from the January ’19 intake) who officially took over from the previous (September ’18) student board. The club hopes to use the upcoming months to further advocate for LGBT awareness and inclusion within the HEC Paris community. We especially want students, who will be future business leaders, to be aware that they will have LGBT employees working for them someday. It’s important to understand the power of allies to help people feel comfortable being themselves at work.
We plan to host social and professional events this fall, such as networking mixers and Paris cultural excursions. We would like to warmly welcome the entire MBA student body and HEC community to participate.
Text by Liz Miller
Elizabeth (Liz) Miller (MBA ’20) graduated from Central College in Iowa (USA) in 2009 with a degree in French Education. She spent her first year after university as an English Teaching Assistant in Strasbourg, France. Following her return to the US, she started working at John Deere, an American agricultural machinery company. In 2011, she moved to Kaiserslautern, Germany, where she has worked the last seven years for John Deere’s European Technology Innovation Center in the Marketing department. With eight years of experience within a multi-national company, Liz decided to pursue an MBA at HEC Paris to further strengthen her abilities from a theoretical standpoint as well as expand her network within France and Europe to advance her career. Continuing to build on her experience in Marketing and digital technology, Liz will pursue the Marketing Specialization as well as the Digital Transformation Certificate. At HEC, Liz is the President of the Industry Club, President of the LGBT+ and Allies Club, and Student Life Representative.