Aundrea DeMille was appointed by the Lieutenant Governor and Governor of Utah to help write equity, diversity & inclusion policies for the great state of Utah. She recently worked on Project Gateway: Equity & Opportunity Commission for Utah, a project that brought together an impressive group of Utahns to assist with the transition of power on Inauguration Day on Jan. 4, 2021. Aundrea’s work focuses on helping people recognize and address unconscious bias, both in their personal lives and in society as a whole. Through thoughtful policy and swift action, Aundrea looks to help continue the important work that Governor Cox committed to in the One Utah Roadmap.
Aundrea was recognized as the perfect individual to help guide and facilitate these types of changes due to her immense knowledge, her ability to tell meaningful stories and address problems clearly. Aundrea’s podcast, “The Wake Up Stories“ works with organizations to help identify unconscious bias in their own workplaces. Using tools that anyone can learn, they push new ideas, learn how to have tough conversations, and encourage people to be advocates for change. Together, Aundrea believes we can create an inclusive environment at home or work, one thought at a time. Gov. Spencer J. Cox and Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson brought Aundrea in to share these ideas and turn them into actionable policies that will benefit all of Utah in the years to come.
Equality and opportunity take center stage as one of the six key priorities in the One Utah Roadmap. It’s vitally important that all Utahns have equal opportunity to prosper. By focusing on strong leadership, expansion of equal opportunity, and access to healthcare for all, Aundrea has helped create a policy framework that will undoubtedly lift all Utahn’s and more importantly, improve life outcomes for people with historically and systemically less access to opportunity – including women, people of color, and LGBTQIA+ individuals. That’s where unconscious bias comes in.
“We all have unconscious bias; the system was built this way,” Aundrea says.
Besides focusing on policy change, it’s important we all realize it’s a problem and address it head-on, without fear or guilt. It’s okay to have hard conversations and recognize that many Utahn’s lack equal opportunity, and work with those around you to change the status quo. Aundrea wants to bridge the gap between policy and people by educating people on the issues that might not affect them directly, but affect others and the state as a whole. Don’t just say you’re helping, make an effort.
To get involved in changing our state for the better, check out Aundrea DeMille’s podcast, “The Wake Up Stories“. To get a better sense of how you can address unconscious bias, visit the Utah Compact on Racial Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.