Growing with Purpose

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May 16, 2021  

Torey Carter-Conneen: Our Work Continues

May 16, 2021

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Torey Carter-Conneen, CEO of the The American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) and a graduate of the Small Giants Leadership Academy, to talk about his leadership journey, his experiences as a Black leader, and his perspective on the important role business can play in our nation's fight for racial justice.

Like all of us, Torey and his colleagues at ASLA were deeply impacted by the murder of George Floyd last summer. "The 8 minutes and 46 seconds murder of George Floyd brought ASLA — and the world, quite frankly — to a full stop and reminded us all that the road to a more just and fair society is long and winding," says Torey. 

For many, a period of deep self-reflection followed. For host Paul Spiegelman, this social justice movement moved him to start a new initiative within the Small Giants Community, the LIFT Scholarship Program (Leaders for Inclusion, Fairness & Transparency). Paul and his family will personally fund enrollment in the Small Giants Leadership Academy for business leaders of color, particularly leaders in underserved communities.
 
As CEO of ASLA, Torey turned his attention to his own organization and the industry to which it belongs, releasing a racial equity plan of action titled “Our Work Continues…” in hopes that the landscape architecture profession and global design community will join them on this important journey.
 
In this episode, Paul and Torey have a frank conversation about the role of race in business, leadership, and life, and they reflect on the unique challenges and opportunities of the moment our nation finds itself in. You'll hear Paul and Torey's perspectives on why people find it so hard to talk about race, and learn why Torey thinks it's less about the conversation and more about listening.