Our Authenticity Compels Us to Action
To our Clients, Colleagues, and Friends,
One word we often use to describe WMS is the word “authentic.” We talk about the “authenticity” of our people and our shared values of hard work, fairness, respect, diversity, and giving back. If you search for the definition of “authentic” in this context you find it consistently defined as “being true to one's own beliefs, spirit, or character” or more succinctly being “real.” Our collective authenticity as a firm is allowed no days off, no respite, no interruption. It must be omnipresent—always there for clients, coworkers, and others to hear, witness or even experience.
We at WMS are compelled by our authenticity, both individually and as a firm, to speak out against the hate in our society, and to loudly raise our voices in support of our Black colleagues and their communities. With the recent senseless killings of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, it was important for us to speak individually with each of our Black colleagues at WMS and to listen to their perspective on the racial issues that our nation is confronting. It was chilling to hear them express the challenges they experience and their concerns living in a society rife with social injustice and systemic racism.
Our Black colleagues and their communities need to know we stand with them, we are here to listen and reflect, we condemn the injustices that befall communities of color, we will support needed change with both our words and our actions, and we truly care about them and all those they hold dear. These supportive gestures cost nothing but mean everything. No action, no word is too small.
If we are prone to inaction or silence regarding these tragic events and the broader inequities that exist, we are not being true to ourselves nor to the shared values of respect, fairness, and diversity to which we at WMS express commitment. In a word, doing nothing would be inauthentic.
WMS Partners is committed to being diverse and inclusive at all levels of the organization. As we have for nearly three decades, we will continue to work with local organizations to combat the systemic inequality that exists in our community and across the nation. We will hold true to our values and will remain the authentic firm and people we are as we stand together for change.
On behalf of WMS Partners,
Todd M. Wickwire
Chief Executive Officer