Friday, November 13, 2009

The Growth of the Walking Collection of Voices

Orlando Health Diversity Initiative - Video 5


(I will be uploading the video to the blog later, but until then you can access it on my YouTube channel.)

As an act of civil disobedience, you may know that I do not remove people from my email list who don't want to know about this Walking Collection of Voices encouraging Orlando Health to embrace the calls to action in the proposal and petition.

So you can see what we're up against, here are a few such messages I have received since starting this blog and video project.

August 20, 2009 - From me to John Bozard, president of Orlando Health Foundation and Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children (one of Orlando Health's hospitals):


I wanted to follow up with you to see where you are at in meeting Michael Freeman to discuss Cultural Awareness opportunities for Orlando Health. As you and I discussed, there are many, many facets to this topic and how Orlando Health can benefit from taking solid steps towards broadening its cultural awareness. Michael as an expert in this area with a well respected track record for working with organizations like Orlando Health will, as we discussed, help break down this process into manageable action items so that the organization can work over time towards being more culturally competent.

I know you are very busy, but I am confident your meeting with Michael will prove valuable for the organization both in the near term and for long term growth.



August 20, 2009 - John Bozard's reply to my above email:

"Alan, good to hear from you. I hope you are doing well and that things are going well for you. When you have time, be sure to give me an update on what you are doing, with contact information, etc. As you can imagine, we have been very busy getting ready for the Sept 5th birthday party to honor Mr. Palmer and to celebrate the 20yr anniversary of APH. I have been traveling a little more than normal these past days trying to visit some potential donors. I had planned to follow up on things but just have not had a chance.

I did get a call from Michael Freeman a few weeks ago, trying to get a meeting on my calender. As it turns out, Michael Freeman and I have known each other for a long time. Many years ago, Michael and his wife were good friends with my sister and brother in law. I have not yet had a chance to return his call or to get something set up.

After you and I had the meeting with Nancy Dinon, Nancy ask that I let her office be the ones to follow up on anything to do with Cultural Awareness as she was adding some new staff members, and she felt that it was important that this issue be handled appropriately by her team. In that regard, I am going to forward Michael's contact information to Nancy and ask her to please have someone on her team to follow up. I will do that next week.

Again, it was good to hear from you and please stay in touch with us at the Foundation. I appreciate the great work that you did for us while you were part of the team.

John Bozard"

October 13, 2009 - Email from Jan Stratton, Universal Orlando's vice president of Diversity & Community Relations:

"Please take me off of your e-mail distribution list."

Ms. Stratton's desire to be removed points to a big problem among leaders at businesses that do embrace diversity in a truly culturally competent way. Ms. Stratton should be pressuring Orlando Health to change. Universal Orlando donates to Orlando Health - they have power to tell Orlando Health to get with the times - but instead their diversity leader asks to be removed from my list. Ironic as well since this week the following Universal Orlando team member signed the petition with the following comment:

John Goodwin, Florida
"I work for NBC Universal Orlando. We have one of the best diversity programs I have seen. Diversity is not just a "gay" issue. This is about working in a diverse society and recognizing the needs and issues of many groups. You can't leave your house and not notice how diverse central Florida is. You are welcome to come and learn from our program."

October 13, 2009 - Email from West Orange Chamber of Commerce Board Member (I send to chamber board members because they should be part of the solution - not part of the problem like this board member.):

"Let the market decide. Please do not send me any more of your campaign and other e-mails.

A. Kurt Ardaman
Fishback, Dominick, Bennett, Stepter,
Ardaman, Ahlers & Langley LLP
1947 Lee Road
Winter Park, Florida 32789
Phone: (407) 425-2786
Fax: (407) 425-2863"

September 11, 2009 - Another West Orange Chamber of Commerce Board Member - Little does Mr. Densmore know that my own father threatened to sue me over emailing him similar type messages last year. If I'm not afraid of my own dad, Mr. Densmore, what makes you think I fear you?:

"Mr. Bounville:

Once again I advise you to *_IMMEDIATELY REMOVE ME_* from your email list. I am prepared to take legal action if I receive another email from you.
Mr. James K. Densmore"

September 11, 2009 - From the president of the African American Chamber of Commerce, Robert Spooney:

"Please remove me from your distribution list."

September 4, 2009 - From Betsey Bell - Orlando Health employee and Hispanic Chamber of Commerce Board Member - She is referring to one of my many emails I've sent out on this subject to the chamber:

"Please disregard this message. I am going to look into it- Alan is not a team member and this is the first I'm hearing of anything like this.

Thank you for your understanding. I will follow up once I find out more details.

Thank you!

Betsey Bell
Orlando Health
321. 230. 9710 cell"

There are a handful more of these emails. I share these above so you see that no matter who you are in the Central Florida business elite, it seems you don't want to be part of the solution. So, as I've been saying all along - the self appointed 'leadership' is doing a poor job at leading. It really is a sad situation. But, this is par for the course for social movements. It is always the people who are under the thumb of oppression who have the most powerful voices. And the more they rise up and share their stories and their experiences the closer a movement comes to tangible change.

Will you commit to add more voices to this movement?

Thank you.

Alan L. Bounville
Former Orlando Health employee and current donor

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