Commemorating Juneteenth At Topo Athletic

On September 22, 1862, Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation to establish that all enslaved people would be forever free. This however, did not free all of those who were enslaved. Almost two years later, on June 19, 1865, Union General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, Texas with federal orders declaring the emancipation of the remaining enslaved people. The following year, those who were enslaved organized the first celebration, known then as “Jubilee Day,” and as they moved to different parts of the country, the celebration spread. Juneteenth was born.

In observance of Juneethen, our offices will be closed on Monday, June 20th. To commemorate this day, we want to showcase some of the programming Topo Athletic is doing to support the Black community and to advance Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in the running and outdoor industries.

901 Consulting is a Black owned and operated company with the goal of being the authority on the workplace, the D&I industry trends and best practices, employee rights, a trauma informed workplace, and design thinking for a modern company culture. 901 Consulting was founded by and led by Khalil O. Saddiq and Hilda M. Joran, who are both local Boston Black consultants.

We are proud to partner with 901 Consulting for a second year of Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (JEDI) training for our employees. Our partnership began in early 2021 with monthly trainings and will continue in an extended format through the rest of 2022. Our work with 901 Consulting is designed to promote and implement anti-racist principles of inclusion and belonging.

The Running Industry Diversity Coalition (RIDC) unites the running industry to provide resources, measure progress, and hold the industry accountable to equitable employment, leadership, and ownership positions and improve inclusion, visibility, and access for Black, Indigenous, and people of color. In addition to our ongoing commitment with the RIDC, in 2021 we made our 2nd annual donation in support of DEI efforts to the organization. Along with our company donation, we had 85% of our employees opt to make a personal donation, which we met with an additional employer match.

Camber Outdoors is a nonprofit organization that equips partner organizations in the outdoor recreation industry to implement best practices in workplace DEI across all leadership levels so that every employee can enact systemic organizational change and organizations can reach the full potential of Workplace DEI. We continue our commitment with Camber to utilize their Partner programs to make real progress towards workplace equity, inclusion, and diversity goals within Topo Athletic.

The Outdoor CEO Diversity Pledge connects leading outdoor brands with inclusion advocates to advance representation for people of color across the industry and is focused on enhancing representation across staff and executive teams, media and marketing, and athletes/ambassadors. By building a relationship of support, empathy and understanding, versus external skepticism and internal stress, we’re moving the outdoor industry towards authentic inclusion. We remain committed to The Pledge and its mission.

Black Men Run Boston is a community rooted in love and centered on Black male health and wellness through running and growing together. They are an identity space for Black Men and practice four values: Brotherhood, Reflection, Unity, and Health. Black Men Run Boston will be hosting a Juneteenth event with a 5k, 10k, and half-marathon race. In support of their efforts, we’ll be providing prizes to the winners of each race.

Ch8sing Waterfalls seeks to empower Black women to find healing in nature, to create a safe environment for Black women to show up and be their authentic selves without judgement, to support and encourage Black women to go beyond their comfort zone to build confidence in the outdoors, and to diversity outdoor spaces by changing the narrative surrounding Black people in the outdoors. We’ve offered support of Ch8sing waterfalls mission by donating pairs of hiking boots to the leaders of the organization.