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3M’s Dedication to Driving Equitable Change in STEM

A note from 3M’s Chief Diversity Officer and Vice President, Ann Anaya
Industry Matters Newsletter

By: Ann Anaya, Chief Diversity Officer and Vice President, 3M

Ann Anaya, Chief Diversity Officer and Vice President, 3M
Ann Anaya, Chief Diversity Officer and Vice President, 3M

Ann Anaya joined 3M Company in 2013 and is currently the Chief Diversity Officer and Global Diversity and Inclusion Strategic Lead. Ann started her career at 3M in the Legal Affairs Compliance and Business Conduct group where she served clients as Counsel for Investigation. Subsequently, she moved into the Legal Affairs Litigation and Preventive Law group where she was Senior Counsel. Ann has 20 years of experience as a trial lawyer. Just prior to joining 3M, Ann was an Assistant United States Attorney for the Department of Justice in the District of Minnesota for 11 years. 

In 2021, 2020 and 2019, Ann was recognized as a Top 100 Chief Diversity Officer, in 2018 as a Top Executive in Corporate Diversity, 2017 Minnesota Lawyer of the Year for Diversity and Inclusion, 2016 3Mgives Volunteer Award and 2016 Minnesota Lawyer of the Year. 

Ann has an undergraduate degree in Political Science and a law degree from University of Minnesota. Ann was born and raised in Minnesota, is married, and has two children.

During my time as 3M’s Chief Diversity Officer and throughout my legal career, I am reminded every day that there is significant strength in truth. Truth in science. Truth in numbers. Truth in the voices of 3M’s employees, community partners and customers. That truth has become more valuable and consequential over the past year and a half. 

At 3M, we’re focused on advancing our social justice and equity initiatives with urgency, fully knowing that systemic change requires resources and long-term dedication. 

3M’s Equity & Community teams have set out to bring together the power of 3M’s equity, diversity and community ambitions to enable growth for our business, while enriching our communities and empowering our employees to improve every life. Much of this work is focused on impacting STEM and skilled trades, inclusive of the chemical community. 

We are increasing our support through a plan to invest $50 million to address racial opportunity gaps through workforce development and STEM education initiatives. $2.1 million is going to North Carolina Agriculture and Technical State University in support of their Equity and Education Initiative (E2I) and $5 million to UNCF (United Negro College Fund) to create a multi-year need-based scholarship program to support more than 100 students in St. Paul, MN.

3M has set a new global, education-focused goal to advance economic equity by creating five million unique STEM and Skilled Trades learning experiences for underrepresented individuals by the end of 2025. This is meant to inspire and support future generations of innovators and scientists to seek out careers in STEM and Skilled Trades. 

Scientists at 3M are playing a large role in achieving our experience goal. The Corporate Research and Development (CRD) Equity team is inspiring K-12 students by serving as 3M Visiting Wizards and 3M TECH Ambassadors. 3M Visiting Wizards provide interesting and fun science demonstrations and hands-on experiments on a variety of topics, and 3M TECH Ambassadors offer classroom visits to provide students, especially women and minorities, with the opportunity to meet and interact with role models who have turned their love of STEM into rewarding technical careers. 

And to help us reach our goals of doubling the representation of Black/African American and Hispanic/Latino individuals across all levels of our company, we’re making big changes. We’re reimagining our talent acquisition processes and our partnerships to increase connections with candidates from underrepresented groups. Our interview processes are being redesigned to remove individual discretion and bias. And we’re providing racial inclusion advocacy education, including disrupting bias training, at all levels of the company to strengthen our inclusive culture.

The Women Leadership Forum-Technical (tWLF), a group of employees within 3M’s broader global Women’s Leadership Forum employee resource network, is also helping increase representation. The tWLF is focused on attracting and developing leaders at every level of the organization to accelerate the inclusion and advancement of technical women globally to reflect our customers and markets, and grow our business. 

I encourage you to check out our first-ever Global Diversity Equity & Inclusion Report at 3M.com/Equity for more details on what the future holds at 3M and the standards we will be holding ourselves accountable to. Our people, shareholders, customers, and future talent have high expectations that 3M as a collective will be a leader in influencing the positive change we want and need in our culture, both internally at 3M and externally throughout the world.

This article has been edited for length and clarity. The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect the view of their employer or the American Chemical Society.

Copyright 2021 American Chemical Society (All Rights Reserved)

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