McKinney is announcing today that Chandra Guinn has been named executive director of diversity, equity and inclusion. The position is a new one at McKinney, which is headquartered in Durham, North Carolina, and has offices in New York and Los Angeles.
Chandra comes to McKinney from Duke University, where she was director for the Mary Lou Williams Centre for Black Culture. In that role, she provided strategic leadership and direction while also curating Black intellectual, cultural, and historical offerings and helping cultivate a cadre of young people prepared to change the world. As the executive director of diversity, equity and inclusion at McKinney, she will help create greater diversity, enhance belonging, and provide clarity around systems to ensure that equity is the experience of those we encounter and engage at every level - inside and outside of the organisation.
“Every industry needs to have a light shined on it. And advertising crosses industries and has the potential to reach far and wide; to support and contribute and to elevate our consciousness around the questions of equity and justice,” said Chandra. “I wanted to come into a new role in a space that was rich with opportunity to make a difference. Joe Maglio's clarity for the position was immediately compelling.”
McKinney began its journey to become a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive agency four years ago with the formation of a DEI advisory board comprised of multicultural business and community leaders. Subsequently, we created an internal DEI team dedicated to promoting LGTBQ, gender, racial, and generational diversity at the agency. And a group of employees formed Chroma, which offers a multicultural perspective designed to make our creative work more inclusive.
These actions did not go unnoticed by Chandra, as she added: “I am excited to lend my efforts to the work that is already underway.”
“After screening 500 applications, there was no doubt that Chandra was the person we were looking for, and we were incredibly lucky to find,” said chief people officer, Sue Roche. “Chandra will be woven into the fabric of McKinney, creating a collective strength that will move the work of diversity, equity, and inclusion forward. We recognise there is an evolutionary process underway, and we will learn from each other together as we go.”
Chandra is a graduate of Bucknell University, where she received her B.A., and she earned a master’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, both in sociology. Prior to joining McKinney and her time as Director of the Mary Lou Williams Center for Black Culture, Chandra taught at both UNC and at Duke, and she was a program coordinator for the Institute of African American Research at UNC.