Renée Tirado – the former head of diversity and inclusion for Major League Baseball – has been hired as the new leader of Gucci's diversity, equity, and inclusion division.
She will lead the luxury Italian fashion brand's efforts “to put culture—self-expression and inclusivity—at the centre of what we do,” said Gucci president and CEO Marco Bizzarri.
For her first task, Tirado will create, develop, and implement a global strategy to not only help make Gucci's workplace more inclusive (by helming the hiring process to develop a diverse DE&I team) but the brand's business initiatives as well.
Plus, Tirado will be in charge of Gucci's Cultural Awareness Learning Program, Global Multicultural Design Fellowship Program, the Internal Global Exchange Program, and more.
“I am in the business of making human connections that start with the foundations of inclusivity, respect, and diversity to ensure Gucci remains culturally relevant and economically competitive," Tirado explained in a statement.
"I am honoured to join a company that puts these non-negotiable values at the forefront of their business model, not as ‘a nice to have’ but as a key component of its business strategy.”
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The hire comes at a time when Gucci really needs it.
The international fashion house has found themselves in hot water twice already this year after selling a blue turban on Nordstrom for $790 and an $890 sweater with large red lips that also resembled the derogatory blackface makeup.
The following month the brand launched the Gucci Changemakers program, an initiative designed to "support industry change and to foster unity through community action."
"We are fully committed to increasing diversity throughout our organization and turning this incident into a powerful learning moment for the Gucci team and beyond," the brand said at the time.
Noting that Gucci stands out as a leader in the fashion industry on diversity and inclusivity with its “breadth of initiatives,” Tirado said: “I am in the business of making human connections that start with the foundation of inclusivity, respect, and diversity to ensure Gucci remains culturally relevant and economically competitive. I am honoured to join a company that puts these non-negotiable values at the forefront of their business model, not as a ‘nice to have’ but as a key component of its business strategy.”