By Ken Tucci, WBZ-TV Producer

BOSTON (CBS) – Workplace diversity is often seen as an issue of fairness, but during this Black History Month, WBZ-TV talked to one Boston community and business leader who argues that diversity is crucial to business success in this global economy.

Carol Fulp leads The Partnership, an organization dedicated to developing professionals of color and nurturing future leaders.

“From a business perspective, you need individuals in your organization who look like your entire market in order to market to them,” said Fulp.

Fulp just crystallized the goal of The Partnership.

“We want to make sure that professionals of color have the leadership development they need to succeed,” she said.

For 25 years, The Partnership has done that with programs that attract, train and retain some of the best and brightest. First Lady Diane Patrick is an early graduate, and so is the state’s new interim Senator.

“We’re most proud that Mo Cowan is of the class of 1996,” said Fulp.

Fulp herself was on the short list for the interim senate job because her resume is long and deep.

President Obama even named her a special representative to the United Nations at the beginning of his first term.

She is a nationally recognized business and civic leader and a woman with a profound mission.

“I’m a child of the Civil Rights movement. Were it not for the Civil Rights movement, I would not be here today. And it really is my responsibility to open the doors for others,” she said.

Rahim Rajpar, who works at John Hancock Financial Services, has been in a partnership program called the Next Generation Executive for about 6 months.

“At the heart of it, it is all about training people how to be better executives,” he said. “My favorite thing about Carol is, when you talk to her, she gives you 120 percent. You feel like her whole world is you in that moment, and that’s a very special quality.”

“This is a global market and in order for us to truly be innovative we have to have different opinions, different people at the table,” said Fulp.

And she takes with her an inspiring perspective.

“Rosa sat so that Martin could march and Martin marched so that Barack could run. And Barack ran so that all… all of our children could fly. And that’s America,” she said.

The Partnership works with people who are at the entry level, mid-career and executive level. Over the past 25 years nearly 3000 people have participated in the leadership development programs.

Online: The Partnership


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