EXCLUSIVE: ViacomCBS unveiled today that they have officially merged the diversity and inclusion teams from Viacom and CBS to form a D&I “super team”. The announcement was made via a memo from Marva Smalls, ViacomCBS’ Global Head of Inclusion.
“The Office of Global Inclusion (OGI) is benefitting greatly from the integration of diversity and inclusion legacy teams from Viacom and CBS,” said the memo. “Diversity and inclusion efforts have been a priority on both sides, creatively and corporately, and together we’re building on those accomplishments, doubling down in our work toward making inclusion, equity and belonging cornerstones of our culture and business.”
In addition, ViacomCBS has assembled a global diversity and inclusion team that includes Tiffany Smith-Anoa’i, Jason Williams, Stephanie Phelps, Wincie Knight and Jeanne Mau. They will work with Smalls to help bolster diversity and inclusion at ViacomCBS and foster initiatives that help promote representation.
“I’m thrilled to be able to combine these two amazing teams into one, as we continue our work around making inclusion, equity and belonging a cornerstone of ViacomCBS’ culture and business,” Smalls tells Deadline. “I couldn’t be more excited to have such a strong leadership team in place to help ViacomCBS build on our progress, advance our initiatives and break new ground in driving diversity and inclusion with our employees, talent, suppliers and business partners everywhere.”
The news comes shortly after CBS unveiled a new plan to step up their efforts to be more inclusive to underrepresented television creators and writers. On Monday morning, the broadcast network has committed 25% of its script development budget to projects from creators, writers and producers who are Black, Indigenous and people of color. The initiative is set to kick off with the 2021/22 development season. In addition, ViacomCBS committed $5 million to social justice causes in June in the midst of the events following the death of George Floyd. It was in June when CEO Bob Bakish announced that Smalls would be integrating the diversity and inclusion teams from CBS and Viacom. He also shared the scaling of existing initiatives and the launching of new ones.
Read the full memo from Smalls about the merging of the teams and bios of the leadership team below:
The Office of Global Inclusion (OGI) is benefitting greatly from the integration of diversity and inclusion legacy teams from Viacom and CBS. Diversity and inclusion efforts have been a priority on both sides, creatively and corporately, and together we’re building on those accomplishments, doubling down in our work toward making inclusion, equity and belonging cornerstones of our culture and business. I am pleased to announce the members of my leadership who will work with me and senior leaders to drive inclusion across ViacomCBS.
Tiffany Smith-Anoa’i: Currently Executive Vice President Entertainment Diversity, Inclusion & Communications of CBS Entertainment, Tiffany will assume the role of Executive Vice President, Entertainment Diversity & Inclusion, West Coast, ViacomCBS. In this role, Tiffany will continue to be based in Los Angeles and lead entertainment-focused diversity and inclusion initiatives across CBS Entertainment, Showtime Networks, Media Networks and Paramount Pictures. Tiffany, an advocate and authority in this space, will oversee creative development programs, talent initiatives and outreach to agencies, multicultural coalitions, guilds and other key inclusion stakeholders. Current dedicated west coast team members will report up to her.
Jason Williams: Jason, Senior Vice President, Global Inclusion Strategy at Viacom, will assume the role of Senior Vice President, Global Inclusion Strategy, ViacomCBS. Based in New York, Jason will focus on both corporate and entertainment diversity and inclusion initiatives across ViacomCBS, including executing our corporate inclusion strategy, managing relationships with our major internal and external partners, serving on key enterprise-wide councils, and partnering with the Sourcing and Procurement teams on expanding the Supplier Diversity Program. Rose Hatcher, Director of Supplier Diversity, will now have a dotted line report to Jason.
Stephanie Phelps: Stephanie has expanded her role to serve as Vice President, Global Inclusion, ViacomCBS. Stephanie is based in New York and will lead the integration and expansion of our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), manage the development and delivery of diversity and inclusion training modules, and the budget operations for OGI. She will also be responsible for special events and outreach to partner organizations and key civil rights stakeholders. Note that Stephanie was a member of the initial team that launched D&I programs for legacy Viacom, beginning with MTV Networks.
Wincie Knight: Wincie, our UK-based Senior Director, Global Inclusion Strategy for Viacom will continue in that role for ViacomCBS. She will focus primarily on diversity and inclusion corporate initiatives for International and the growth and development of our ERGs outside the U.S., partnering with international regulatory organizations. Wincie will also be responsible for diversity and inclusion training across our footprint in Europe.
Jeanne Mau: Jeanne, Senior Vice President, CBS Entertainment Diversity and Inclusion will be Senior Vice President, Global Inclusion, ViacomCBS. Based in Los Angeles, Jeanne will oversee the ViacomCBS Writers Mentoring Program, Directors Initiative, Viewfinder Emerging Directors Program and Nickelodeon Writers and Artist Program. Jeanne will continue to build partnerships with executives and producers to create access for artists and creators across all platforms of our business. As part of her role, she will also establish initiatives that inspire and foster innovation, and cultivate a diverse, world-class talent pool of content drivers.
With this highly experienced and passionate leadership team in place, the Office of Global Inclusion is well positioned to amplify our programs, break new ground, and make inclusion the fully immersive experience it needs to be for our employees, our on and off-screen talent, and our suppliers and business partners. Please join me in congratulating my leadership team. Our collective OGI team looks forward to working with every member of our global ViacomCBS family as we continue this important work at a time when it’s needed more than ever. Thank you.
Ours is a shared journey.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.