The lack of humanity reflected in the death of George Floyd, the senseless deaths of so many others in our minority communities and the Black Lives Matter response have caused me to reflect on my limitations in implicitly supporting a status quo that has lead our communities to where we are today.

We have all been touched by what has happened to our fellow human beings. We share the grief of fearing for loved ones caused by repeated acts of violence and racism. We know this is not who we are.

The message that committed individuals can make a positive difference, is central to who we are. Our mission as a company has always been based on service through collaboration and partnership. We all hope that our work contributes, in a small way, to make the world a better place.

At this stage, my promise is to commit time and resources to make our company even more inclusive and truly a better place to work for all. As you already know, this promise will only make a difference if each of us have an open mind, listen to each other and learn. To start, I would like to invite employees to reflect, voice concerns and add their voice to an internal dialog at each site or directly to HR.

I am proud of our company, the diversity of our teams and the team spirit that allowed us to get where we are today. Change takes time. Although trust and patience are sorely tested during uncertain times, our commitment to a mission and to collaborate with our colleagues for the long haul has seldom failed us.

Our history taught us that challenges can bring the best in us. I look forward to learning from you all. I am confident that by working together we will make a difference.

Maurice Barakat