A Note from Jane - Diary 8.6.2020

Posted by Jane PARADIS on

A different installment of my diary of sharing, in hopes that we create a sense of community...sticking together through this unimaginable time.
I am so completely filled with emotion this week. I am not sure how much sense this diary entry is going to make, but I thought it’s better to try and write something – rather than hide from it. Like many of you I have been watching the news too much and am incredibly saddened and angered at the world right now. We are all currently having to step back and acknowledge racism, hatred, and violence – and listen to the people it affects. I am getting educated on why we are where we are and how to articulate what needs to happen; actions that I can take as a human and we can take as a company to make change a reality. I know that I can’t stand to see another person, another black person, persecuted and not given the opportunity I have been given. I know that I am against racism, but I think I need more action to back that statement up. I feel like everyone (in a good way) is posting resources and I am using them.

Jane Winchester is a tiny company, but how we represent the brand outwardly in our marketing is an opportunity to show the world diversity. So far, we have use only hired 6 professional models in our 2 years, 4 of them white and 2 of them black. That is ok but we can do better. I think where the real opportunity lies for JW is with influencers. We have struggled to connect with black women to gift and share our brand. We can do better. In addition, where we spend our money is critical – can we find anyone to produce or supply product that is a black owned business? I am going to find out. I know I can do better. In terms of financially giving, Girl Rising has been the charity that Jane Winchester donates to most and it does benefit all races, and I feel good about that. I have mentioned them many times but if you have not yet please check them out (here). Doug and I also very proudly support our local ABC House which directly benefits students of color with a mission to provide opportunities for a great education. We plan to double down on our support of our local ABC chapter, check out the national organization here.

These are minuscule steps but something I can do. We all want action and change is absolutely needed, so I want to be sure this becomes a part of my company’s culture. You will have to hold me to it. Please be patient as I learn; my email/Instagram is OPEN for conversation.

While all this change has been happening in the world, this was a weekend of major milestones for my family. Friday was Drew’s graduation commencement, Saturday was Sabrina’s graduation commencement, and today my BABY Tiki turns 16. Emotions are high (aka brimming over and semi-exploding). I have said it before, we are so sad our kids are not getting to experience the normal right of passage with their graduations – and I feel it too. I wanted to get dressed and drive with them to school to sit and listen to the speeches and see them walk the stage. I know I would be crying the entire time. Instead I have these weird mico-bursts of tears and emotion and I don’t know if it’s because the kids are graduating – or if it’s because I think they are missing out – or because of covid pressure – or because the emotion I see when watching the protests grow and the hurt I see around me. OH and the fact that my little girl is getting her drivers license. Emotional!

To top it off, there have been these incredible storms here and the BIGGEST tree fell right across our back yard. A visual reminder of the mess that surrounds us right now.

OK, reeling it in. I am positive. I am optimistic. I believe we are at a crossroads and that we will use all of it. The pandemic, the systemic racism, the mess that is today – to make a better world. We have to make sure that good things come of bad. I’m on board to never give up trying 😊.

Sending tons of love,
A Note From Jane

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