Statement From Our CEO and Board Chair

Sonoran Institute stands in solidarity with the Black community.

The killing of Black Americans is wrong.
Systemic racism must be dismantled.
Black Lives Matter.

We condemn the continued racial incidents targeting Black Americans and all forms of racism, discrimination, and acts of violence committed against the Black community. Together, we can make it impossible to ignore a long list of racist killings, including most recently those of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd.

We are committed to the goal of challenging individual biases in improving race relations, and more importantly, addressing the systemic nature of racism: ignorance, apathy and silence are harmful choices that hinder progress and are often perpetuated by those with unchecked privilege. However, a diverse, inclusive and equitable society is one where we listen, support one another, find common ground and build a future that provides justice and a healthy environment.

To that end, we are moving with deliberate speed to review our policies, procedures, processes, and traditions with the goal of eliminating historical and present systemic barriers that prevent full participation and engagement. Our efforts cannot happen, nor will we be truly representative of our mission, unless individuals are welcomed and valued for who they are.

We recognize the tremendous positive gifts, talents, knowledge, culture, and experiences that Black people contribute to us and our institutions; our compassion and actions extend to everyone experiencing racism. Our commitment to environmental equity is also a commitment to social equity. Sonoran Institute is a binational agency; both the communities we work with and our staff include Mexican citizens, Latinx, Native American, Asian and Pacific Islander among other Americans who are impacted by prejudice directly. This too compels us to act. It would be an abuse of our privilege to stay silent when our communities are grieving and feeling unsafe.

We are asking you to raise your voices and say Black Lives Matter. Join us on a path of listening, learning and changing. We have a duty to name injustice when it occurs and work to correct it now and for decades to come. We must not fail. We will not fail.

Stephanie Sklar
Chief Executive Officer of the Sonoran Institute

Mary S. Alexander
Chair, Board of Directors of the Sonoran Institute

Lee este decalaraciĆ³n en espaƱol: El Sonoran Institute manifiesta su solidaridad con la comunidad negra