for Cable Industry Diversity Initiatives
New York, NY – The Walter Kaitz Foundation and the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) today announced that the Boards of Directors of each organization have approved a plan to reorganize cable industry diversity initiatives, reduce administrative costs and duplication, and strengthen some of the industry’s most successful diversity-oriented mentoring and leadership development programs.
The plan, developed during three months of deliberations, is the work of a special committee appointed by the Kaitz Foundation board and co-chaired by Lynn Yaeger, Executive Vice President of Time Warner Cable, and David L. Cohen, Executive Vice President of Comcast Corporation. It includes the following key elements:
- The Kaitz Foundation will continue as the cable industry’s lead diversity organization, with a CEO-level board, thereby assuring continued focus on diversity as a key industry initiative. Similar to the model adopted for Cable in the Classroom, Kaitz will operate under the administrative umbrella of NCTA.
- The annual Kaitz Foundation dinner will continue, and the current Kaitz dues structure will be replaced with a membership fee program. Together, the dinner and membership fee program will enable Kaitz to maintain its role as the primary fundraiser for diversity initiatives in the cable industry.
- The Kaitz Foundation will focus its efforts on three signature initiatives:
- Significantly increased funding, to scale already-existing and proven mentoring and leadership development programs offered by other cable industry organizations that focus on diversity, such as the Emma Bowen Foundation, the National Association for Multi-ethnicity in Communications (NAMIC), and Women in Cable and Telecommunications (WICT);
- An enhanced Cable Industry Supplier Diversity Program to serve as a resource for all companies in the cable industry and as a point of contact for minority and women owned companies that wish to do business with the cable industry; and
- A revamped Cable Industry Diversity Web site to serve as the cable industry’s primary Web site for diversity initiatives and information
“This fresh approach to diversity within the cable industry will enable us to take advantage of the particular strengths of all of the cable industry’s diversity organizations and really make a difference in advancing the industry’s commitment to diversity,” said Glenn Britt, Chair of the Kaitz Foundation and NCTA Boards and Chairman and CEO of Time Warner Cable. “By focusing on three signature programs as well as Kaitz’s fundraising capacity to scale proven diversity programs, we should make significant gains in the years ahead.”
“Preserving Kaitz as an independent entity, but placing it under the administrative umbrella of the NCTA, allows us to maintain the focus on diversity at the highest levels of our industry that has been such a valuable hallmark of the Kaitz Foundation, and more efficiently channel support to proven industry diversity organizations,” said Robert Sachs, President & CEO, NCTA.
Spencer Kaitz, founding board member of the Kaitz Foundation, which was created in memory of his father 20 years ago, said, “This new structure gives us the ability to build upon the substantial successes of the Kaitz Foundation, which have included the raising of more than $20 million in funding for cable industry diversity initiatives and the Kaitz Fellows Program, which is responsible for 500 people of color entering the cable industry at the management level. I can’t think of a better way to continue to honor my father’s memory.”
Britt and Sachs said the new structure would become effective January 1, 2004, to allow for a smooth transition. A transition committee co-chaired by Yaeger and Cohen has been asked to work with NCTA on details of the transition, they said.