Across the country, Tao Group Hospitality Cares members gathered in celebration and recognition of Black History Month throughout February. It started in New York City on February 15th, when coworkers banded together to discuss the importance of the month at Uptown’s LAVO Italian Restaurant. Discussions were led at each table by volunteers who gave accounts of their own experiences, triumphs, adversities, and goals.

The New York luncheon was followed by a gathering at Los Angeles’s The Highlight Room in Hollywood, California on February 21st. Here, similar conversations took place to honor the achievements of our colleagues, while making strides toward inclusiveness and equality as a company. They discussed, learned and reflected on each other’s journeys, values, and goals. On February 23rd, our teams in Las Vegas and Chicago united at LAVO Italian Restaurant and TAO Chicago, respectively, to do the same.

A huge thanks to all of our volunteers and discussion leaders: Lance Arberry, Ben-Galy Cisse, Rich Fleming, Sharnice Willis, Shayna Alston, Rich Thomas, Britney Angele Nguetta, Patrick Prudent, Brandon Thomas, Keema Haynes, Saundrina Smith, Melvin Fowler, Karen Anderson, Derrick Ervin, Prentice Burleson, Crisjon Sanders, and Maurice Lofton.

Afterward, we received excellent feedback from attendees:

  • “I enjoyed learning more about my colleagues’ personal and professional background. It was great and inspiring to hear the different paths we all took that lead to Tao Group and how we all want to learn from each other how to be more welcoming.”
  • “This conversation allowed me to become vulnerable with my coworkers which I never thought I would be open to sharing stories like this about my history and experiencing racism in previous jobs. I sat with people I did not know and they had my back and also shared stories that impacted them. I feel heard and I look forward to being the type of person at this company that other people look to to open up to.”
  • “The transparency of each conversation was truly an experience to endure. Tao group has defined culture and equality in a great way and I am honored to be a part of the team!”