Hi, I'm Jeremy Quittner, a writer for Fortune.com's Venture channel. I'm filling in for Ellen McGirt this week while she's on vacation.
Republicans may have abandoned their big tent philosophy this year with a presidential candidate who belittles minorities and winks at white supremacists and foreign dictators. But for Democrats, winning minority voters is key to prevailing in the 2016 election.
One way the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and its affiliates hope to reach this critical voting block of non-white voters, who represent nearly a third of all eligible voters, is through contracts to minority - owned small businesses that provide everything from political consulting in local races to mugs and t-shirts at the Democratic convention.
Yet for years, Democratic party spending on its minority contractors has more or less mirrored federal spending, meaning only a fraction of such vendors ever actually get contracts. The party has recognized that this is a missed opportunity, and so during this presidential election cycle , it has amped up it contracting target goals for minority vendors at the convention in Philadelphia. In other areas, like political consulting, it still has work to do.
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Detroit residents say race relations have improved since ‘67 riots
It’s been almost 50 years since violent riots ripped through Detroit in response to the poor treatment of African Americans by police and the discrimination they faced in education, housing and jobs. In a new survey, both white and black residents in the area say race relations have gotten better --though there’s plenty of room for more improvement.
The number of black C-suite execs declined under Obama
When President Obama took office in 2008, there was an expectation that diversity would improve in corporate boardrooms. Those expectations may have been set too high: there are only four companies in the S&P 500 with black CEOs, down from a peak of seven in 2007. And the situation in the rest of the C-suite isn’t looking any better.
The Woke Leader
BuzzFeed editor asks news writers to keep political views to themselves
BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith sent out a staff memo reminding members of its news team to avoid taking ‘partisan stands’ on social media or in their reporting. “You have colleagues covering this race intensely and an audience who should trust that you, and we, are as fair and accurate as you know we strive to be,” he wrote.
Inside Twitter’s plans to build a more diverse workforce
The social networking giant took some flak back in December for hiring Jeffrey Siminoff, a white male, as its new head of diversity and inclusion. In an interview withFortune's own Erin Griffith, Siminoff responded to the criticism and explained Twitter’s diversity strategy.
America has changed over the years. But these values that my grandparents taught me -- they haven’t gone anywhere. They’re as strong as ever, still cherished by people of every party, every race, every faith. They live on in each of us. What makes us American, what makes us patriots is what’s in here. That’s what matters.