PPG to Invest $20 Million By 2025 to Advance Racial Equity

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PITTSBURGH—PPG (NYSE: PPG) and the PPG Foundation announced a commitment to invest $20 million by 2025 to address systemic racism and advance racial equity in the U.S. by funding educational pathways for Black communities and people of color. The commitment strengthens PPG’s focus on education—a priority giving area for PPG and the PPG Foundation—and furthers its support of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education, the company said in a statement. “We aim to reach diverse students and communities to champion change and empower historically underrepresented populations with greater opportunities to achieve brighter futures,” said Malesia Dunn, executive director, PPG Foundation and corporate global social responsibility.

“Through this important commitment, we will prioritize equity and justice within education to close the racial gaps in STEM learning and careers, and help our society meet collective challenges quickly, creatively and effectively.”

The $20 million investment reflects commitments to support:

• Advanced STEM education and career development—Supporting Black people and people of color who are pursuing advanced studies in engineering, chemistry and data science by funding scholarships, and academic and career counseling programs. PPG will focus on programs that promote inclusion, provide professional development and build bridges that enable middle and high school students to successfully pursue advanced learning opportunities and STEM careers.
• K-12 STEM education—Encouraging interest among more Black students, and students of color, through hands-on STEM experiences in after-school programs, camps and in-school settings, as well as mentoring and career exposure.
• Social justice—Supporting new partners dedicated to social justice that were identified in collaboration with PPG’s employee resource networks (ERNs). PPG will support a range of social justice initiatives that focus on civil rights, criminal justice reform and the cultural heritage of Black communities and people of color.
• Beautifying diverse communities—Increasing the number of PPG Colorful Communities projects that impact diverse communities.
• Ongoing impact opportunities—Funding additional opportunities impacting Black and people of color populations that will be identified in collaboration with PPG employees, leaders and community partners, on an ongoing basis.

The PPG Foundation plans to direct at least 25 percent of diversity funding to organizations serving the company’s global headquarters community of Pittsburgh. It also will continue to invest more than 50 percent of its U.S.-based grantmaking to support causes that focus on Black communities and people of color, veterans, women, LGBTQ+ populations, economically disadvantaged individuals and families, and people with disabilities.

The community engagement commitment supplements PPG’s actions to further progress diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) company wide. PPG said it will continue to identify additional opportunities to ensure support to underrepresented groups around the world.

“These concrete and measurable actions support and encourage equity and justice in education, bringing more Black people and people of color into STEM education and, in turn, into the optical industry. PPG is committed to addressing systemic racism in all forms to advance our society,” commented Keith Cross, co-leader and global director of strategic marketing, optical monomers and coatings.

In 2020, PPG continued its focus on DE&I across the company. In response to George Floyd’s death and the widespread civil rights movement that followed, the PPG Foundation made initial investments in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Legal Defense Fund, the Center for Policing Equity and the Equal Justice Initiative.

In November 2020, the company appointed Mendoza to design, lead and execute PPG’s global DE&I vision and strategy, and leverage data-driven insights to accelerate the company’s DE&I agenda. PPG also relaunched and expanded its ERNs, providing employees with more opportunities to share ideas, learn from one another, and leverage the unique skills, experiences and perspectives of the PPG team.