Author Archives: RFBF

Utah Faith@Work, Veteran’s Day Conference Nov. 11

6 Aug, 2022

Save the Date, Nov. 11

This coming Veterans Day (11/11/22), the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation will host a half-day conference for companies on the “silicon slopes” of Utah.

If your company has an office in Utah, please email us so we can be sure you’re included!

Grim speaks to Salt Lake Chamber’s Military Affairs Committee

3 Aug, 2022

On August 3, 2022, Brian Grim shared with the Salt Lake Chamber Military Affairs Committee* about the faith-and-belief-friendly movement among Fortune 500 companies and how veterans are playing a part in the movement.

Grim’s examples included how a former US Army command chaplain, Karen Diefendorf, became chief of chaplains at Tyson Foods (see more).

Grim also shared how the 16th Chaplain of the US Marine Corps, Rev. Dr. Alan T. “Blues” Baker, Rear Admiral (ret.), U.S. Navy, has started the corporate chaplaincy initiative ChaplainCare with retired military chaplains. Their aim is to help corporations provide the same quality of spiritual care for their members as the military does.

Grim also shared about a panel discussion he moderated with Senator James Lankford (R-OK) & Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) on why businesses should include religion as part of their diversity initiatives. (Hint: It involved a major global corporation first taking the step to include veterans as part of their diversity initiative.)

Grim began the presentation with a summary of Google’s journey to religious inclusion, spotlighting their groundbreaking video introducing their Inter Belief Network (IBN).

* The Salt Lake Chamber Military Affairs Committee focuses on building relationships between military installation units and businesses by increasing awareness through monthly briefings and tours. The committee began in 1999. It was started because it was recognized that the Top Of Utah MAC usually provided support to the Active duty units at Hill AFB, but no one was really assisting the Reserve and Guard units located in Salt Lake City area.

EEOC Commissioner Lucas: Best practices to prevent religious discrimination and promote religious inclusion

2 Aug, 2022

One of the foremost thinkers on religion and the workplace is Commissioner Andrea R. Lucas of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Learn more about her perspective on best practices prevent religious discrimination and promote religious inclusion here.

The link also includes the video of her keynote address and Q&A at our recent Faith@Work ERG Conference Dare to Overcome as well as comments by Intel’s May Mowzoon.

From the Vatican to American Airlines

30 Jul, 2022

By Brian Grim, RFBF President

Last week, I had meetings with two different sections at the Vatican. The first was with the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development. We discussed corporate efforts to combat human trafficking and the release of the 5th ed. of their pivotal document, Vocation of the Business Leader.

The Vocation of the Business Leader is a 32-page “vademecum” (handbook) addressed to entrepreneurs and business leaders, in their daily commitment to integrating faith and work, and to professors in their formative moments in schools and universities.

The second meeting was with Archbishop Paul Gallagher, Secretary of Relations with the States (Vatican’s international relations). We had a terrific discussion of the global work of the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation.

As soon as I returned from Rome, I had meetings at American Airlines with Senior Vice President Thomas Rajan, Chief Diversity Officer Cedric Rockamore, and Chief Flight Controller & Company Chaplain Rev. Greg McBrayer discussing how their mission to care for people on life’s journey (including chaplaincy) is what makes them #1 on the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation’s Corporate 2022 REDI Index.

You can read more here:

Vocation of the Business Leader: A Reflection, 5th ed.

Beginning the Day at American Airlines

Beginning the Day at American Airlines

30 Jul, 2022

By Brian J. Grim, Ph.D. This is part of our ongoing blog series, Authenticity & Connection.

I just had the opportunity to spend the day with Fr. Greg McBrayer at American Airlines Skyview headquarters, just down the road from DFW Airport. Fr. Greg is a chief flight controller and a chaplain at the airline. He’s also global lead for their Christian Employee Business Resource Group (EBRG).

I’d just come from the Vatican, where I had meetings with two different sections. One, which I’ve worked with through the years, is the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, which produced the pivotal document, Vocation of the Business Leader.

American Airlines, from my perspective, is a company that is putting to practice some of the core principles from that document, including the concept of a “company of persons”:

“The Six Practical Principles for Business in the Vocation of the Business Leader point to the purpose of business, which John Paul stated “is not simply to make a profit, but is to be found in its very existence as a community of persons who in various ways are endeavoring to satisfy their basic needs, and who form a particular group at the service of the whole of society”. While the phrase “community of persons” is not common in business literature today, it actually best expresses the full realization of what a company and corporation can be.

The etymology of the words “company” and “companions”—cum (with), and panis (bread)—suggests “breaking bread together”. The etymology of the word “corporation”—the Latin corpus (body)—suggests a group of people “united in one body”. This is the ideal when relatives join together in a family business. And reflecting the love that wants every family member to flourish, family business leaders might tailor work opportunities to marginalized and disadvantaged groups.”

In the video below, see the breadth of the faiths active across American Airlines forming a “community of persons,” beginning with how the Christian Employee Business Resource Group (EBRG) leader at American Airlines begins his day with his Muslim colleague.

Vocation of the Business Leader: A Reflection, 5th ed.

29 Jul, 2022

The Vocation of the Business Leader: A Reflection, initially published by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace (which merged into the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, since August 2016), is a 32-page vademecum addressed to entrepreneurs and business leaders, in their daily commitment to integrating faith and work, and to professors in their formative moments in schools and universities.

The publication the Vocation of the Business Leader has its origin in the international seminar “Caritas in Veritate: The logic of Gift and the Meaning of Business”, held in Rome, from 24 to 26 February 2011, in the presence of entrepreneurs and scholars (with key input by the University of St. Thomas). On that occasion, the participants in the seminar decided to draw up a guide, intended for entrepreneurs as well as business teachers, which would highlight the important role of the vocation for the entrepreneur in the context of the current globalized economy, as well as the contribution of the fundamental principles of the Social Doctrine of the Church to the organization of modern business activities.

The best-selling book has already been translated and published in 15 languages, including Chinese.

The Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development has re-published it in a 5th edition that presents some of the teachings of Pope Francis that are particularly relevant to business, especially in Laudato Si’. The 5th edition text is available in English, Spanish, French, Portuguese.

Authentic Connections: Bringing my faith and beliefs to my workplace

27 Jul, 2022

At noon ET on August 4, join us for a tremendous opportunity to connect meaningfully with people of various faiths and beliefs in a Zoom-based discussion.

The following attendees have volunteered to serve as discussion leaders in the Zoom breakout sessions.

  • — Atheists & Agnostics: Julia Gratcheva, Intel
  • — Baha’i: Jenna Nicolas, Impact Experience
  • — Buddhist: Thong Yian Nee, Dell Technologies
  • — Christian: Barbara Phillips, Google, & Yvonne Lane, American Airlines
  • — Catholic: Brian Grim, RFBF (formerly Pew Research Center)
  • — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints: King Husein, Span Construction & Engineering
  • — Friends of Bill (AA): Melissa Grim, RFBF
  • — Hindu: Milind Makwana; Bhawna Saxena, PayPal
  • — Jewish: Naomi Kraus, Google
  • — Muslim: Hadi Sharifi, Intel
  • — Protestant/Presbyterian: Kent Johnson, RFBF (formerly Texas Instruments)
  • — Scientology: Marsie Sweetland, Equinix
  • — Sikh: Neetu Dhaliwal; Harpreet Dhindsa, PayPal

We’d suggest the following questions; but each “room” will be free to chart its own path:

  1. (1) How does your faith relate to your personal identity – who you are?
  2. (2) What principles taught by your faith relate to the conduct of your work?
  3. (3) What does your faith teach about authority, teamwork, serving and work relationships
  4. (4) Other relevant facts about the other’s faith, such as the meaning behind their main religious holidays, clothing, diet, schedule, etc.

We hope many of you will join us for these respectful conversations, as we continue to promote meaningful, authentic connections.

Register for the Zoom event today.

Tokyo: Dare to Overcome Aug. 27

20 Jul, 2022

Outline of DTO Japan Conference
Target: Corporations, organizations, businesspeople, and future leaders (including students)
Purpose of the conference: To highlight global issues of interest to working people and teams
To improve productivity and solve social issues by shedding light on global themes of interest to workers and teams.
Date: Saturday, August 27, 2022, 13:00 ~ 17:00
Venue: International Conference Hall, Yotsuya Campus, Sophia University (Building 2, 17th floor)
Speakers and Lecture Topics

1. Human Trafficking/strong>

Masako Tanaka
Faculty of Global Studies, Sophia University
Why is the technical internship system criticized as human trafficking?
Reproductive Health and Rights of Migrant Women

2. People with disabilities Employment Situation

Hiroyasu Ito
Chairman of NPO Japan Abilities
NPO Japan Abilities Association
Activities aimed at the realization of a symbiotic society: Introducing the practice and current status of our activities to realize a symbiotic society

3. You are unique. Introduction of Employee Resource Group (ERG), a U.S. company

Justin Green
Accenture, U.S.A.
Leader of ERG for people with disabilities
Aiming for a society in which each individual can play an active role as a unique individual 〜 Introduction of ERG in a U.S. company

4. Leveraging Diversity – The Future of Business Environments

Dr. Brian Grim
Dare to Overcome International – Global Chair
President, Religious Freedom Business Foundation

Diverse Business Environments Are Expanding Around the World: Understanding the nature and benefits of diversity

Registration is free of charge, but the number of participants is limited, so please register by clicking on the link below.

Rome: Notre Dame Religious Liberty Initiative

20 Jul, 2022

by Brian Grim, Ph.D.

Rome: Yesterday, I was able to share about the amazing religious inclusion movement within Fortune 500 companies as a member of the Religious Liberty Initiative (RLI) Advisory Board. Established in 2020, Notre Dame Law School’s Religious Liberty Initiative promotes religious freedom for people of all faiths through scholarship, events, and the Law School’s Religious Liberty Clinic.

Today begins the second annual Notre Dame Religious Liberty Summit, a gathering of the foremost thought leaders on religious liberty. The summit stimulates engaging conversations between scholars, advocates, and religious leaders about the future of religious liberty in the United States and around the world.

The inaugural Religious Liberty Summit was held in 2021 on the campus of the University of Notre Dame in Notre Dame, Indiana. The second Religious Liberty Summit will be held from July 20-22, 2022, in Rome, Italy.

Each year during the summit, one individual is honored with the Notre Dame Prize for Religious Liberty in recognition of achievement in preserving religious liberty.

Click for 2022 Religious Liberty Summit Schedule

Selected sessions will be recorded and available to watch on the Law School’s YouTube channel.

How Can Modern-Day Human Trafficking Be Stopped?

13 Jul, 2022

Summary by Alessio Atria

More people are being enslaved nowadays than at any other point in time, mainly since those who aren’t enslaved are oblivious to the existence of human trafficking. The presentation  above suggests that disrupting the cycle of human trafficking will end it altogether.

Bill Clark, A21’s Chief Advancement Officer, shared a presentation explaining how human trafficking can end and how corporations could help during the opening opening plenary of Dare to Overcome, the Religious Freedom & Business Foundation’s annual faith@work conference, May 23-25, 2022.

The current estimated number of enslaved people is tens of millions, with the largest estimate being 40 million. 

6 million Ukrainian women and children, huge targets for trafficking, have moved into neighboring countries while the men stay and fight in the ongoing war with Russia.

The cycle of human trafficking suggests that vulnerable people, if left unprotected, end up being exploited. Unless these people receive care after escaping these circumstances, they might be re-victimized and the cycle repeats.

In order to protect Ukrainian refugees, A21 handed out flyers in refugee shelters explaining to refugees what human trafficking looks like and what numbers to call. In partnering up with Clear Channel, A21 received 89 human trafficking-related billboards and placed them throughout Poland, thereby having A21 reach 1.4 million people. A21 runs hotlines to identify victims, works with law enforcement to rescue victims, and runs an aftercare program to protect survivors from re-victimization. 

By getting 1% of the world population, i.e., 8 billion people, to care and do something about human trafficking, the amount of advocates would be twice as many people enslaved. 80 million advocates and 2.3 million businesses, or 1% of corporations, could end human trafficking together. Right now, there are probably 2 or 3 million people fighting against it.

To reach 80 million people and inform them about human trafficking, employers must engage every employee as they have networks of connections. If companies engage customers from various areas of the world, then working through networks will allow them to quickly reach many people.

A21 created a safe relationship guide teaching folks to avoid relational tricks. They also made guides for parents teaching them to protect their children from online trafficking by explaining the dangers to them.

This organization has an hour-long global broadcast giving lessons on human trafficking. They also have an event taking place in 500 communities in 50 countries called Walk For Freedom where volunteers give out flyers and warn people that human trafficking is happening in their communities.

There was no organized work to fight human trafficking, until probably the late 1990’s or early 2000’s. The people currently making progress are pioneers, not replicators, of something done before. Groups like Dell Technologies’ Interfaith ERG are the innovators making a difference!

Dell Technologies Interfaith ERG received the A21 Catalyst Award for leading the charge in combatting human trafficking. The Award was presented in Washington DC by A21 on the opening day of Dare to Overcome, the religious Freedom & Business Foundation’s annual faith-and-belief national employee resource group (ERG) conference. The conference is held in partnership with the Busch School of Business at The Catholic University of America.