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Uplifting Diversity: HOK’s 2023 PRIDE Panel

In celebration of PRIDE Month, HOK hosted a discussion featuring the stories and experiences of six colleagues and members of the LGBTQ+ community.

More than 400 HOK employees tuned in to the streamed event that covered topics such as confronting biases and celebrating identity.

The panelists included (clockwise in image above):

Watch the entire discussion below, or skip below for a few of the big themes and takeaways.

Discussion highlights included:

‘Coming Out’ at Work

Donovan Olliff shared his journey from an ROTC student to becoming an architect and then attending law school to eventually find himself as HOK’s general counsel. His story offered insights on creating balance between professional and personal identity.

Sarah Lotz discussed the silent challenges that individuals of the queer community face in the workplace and her experiences of overcoming a male-dominated industry as a queer woman.

Finding Community:

Aengus Mostacci, a leader of HOK’s queer social group and a member of his local gay men’s chorus, talked about how living authentically encourages community.

Jonathan Scaggs recounted his initial fears of identifying as gay at his first corporate job and spoke on the importance of allyship and kindness in the office.

Overcoming Stereotypes:

Karol Owsiany shared his take on tackling social norms and his experience encountering prejudices in his personal and professional life.

On Celebrating Diversity:

Ellen Ignacio discussed the importance of visibility in the workplace and how the foundation of establishing individual comfort begins with self-confidence.

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