Wednesday 20th October saw the Embrace Difference QLD State Chapter kick of their first event. Lion hosted the evening at the iconic XXXX Brewery Ale House with guest speaker Gemma Davidson, GM of People, Culture & Safety QRL sharing her insights on how they have achieved a diverse & inclusive workplace.
With a 15 year career in HR, most recently with Queensland Rugby League - the governing body for Queensland’s most popular game and the state's favourite elite team, the Queensland Maroons, Gemma discussed her passion for D&I along with initiatives the QRL has implemented.
Gemma has always been passionate about diversity, inclusion, and gender equity and is responsible for overseeing the QRL’s Diversity & Inclusion Framework and Action Plan and its five year gender equity plan, supporting the organisation's ability to grow and be accessible to all. Objectives include raising state-wide participation in the rugby league community, increasing membership, revenue & funding opportunities to further invest in diversity and inclusion programs.
Guests were enthralled by her honest, authentic approach to leaning into the challenging conversations and not apologising for moving the organisation forward. The QRL have a 48/52 gender split which was a surprise to many. Gemma shared how they changed the language of advertisements for roles which expanded the appeal to a more diverse group to applicants. These insights and many others are key learnings for the Drinks Industry and those that attended.