GREEN BAY, Wis. – December 14, 2023 – Associated Bank, the largest bank headquartered in Wisconsin, proudly announced that it received a score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s 2023-2024 Corporate Equality Index, the nation’s foremost benchmarking survey and report measuring corporate policies and practices related to LGBTQ+ workplace equality. Associated Bank joins the ranks of 545 major U.S. businesses that also earned top marks this year.
“We are proud to be recognized for our LGBTQ+ equality and inclusion efforts,” said Andrew Harmening, President and CEO, Associated Bank. “Our leaders and colleagues alike continue to build upon a culture that recognizes and values colleagues for who they are while equitably supporting them. As an organization we look forward to continuing our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I) journey and commitment to our people through an increasingly inclusive workplace.”
Associated Bank's Pride & Equality Colleague Resource Group (CRG) was instrumental in earning this recognition.
“Associated’s Pride and Equality CRG will continue to be a be a visible resource within the company and in our communities,” said John Halechko, EVP, Director of Branch Banking, Pride & Equality CRG Executive Sponsor, Associated Bank. “New and prospective colleagues are valued not just for what they bring to the company, but for who they are as individuals. The Pride and Equality CRG is a true resource to our colleagues, friends and allies."
The results of the 2023-2024 CEI showcase how U.S.-based companies are promoting LGBTQ+ friendly workplace policies in the U.S. and abroad. The first year of the CEI included 319 participants, and the 2023-2024 CEI now includes 1,384 participants; further demonstrating the tremendous trajectory of the CEI, a record-breaking 1,340 businesses have non-discrimination protections specific to gender identity, up from just 17 in 2002. These critical non-discrimination protections cover 21 million employees in the U.S. and around the globe. Associated Bank’s efforts in satisfying all the CEI’s criteria earned a score of 100 and the designation as recipient of the Equality 100 Award: Leader in LGBTQ+ Workplace Inclusion.
The CEI rates employers providing these crucial protections to over 20 million U.S. workers and an additional 18 million outside of the U.S. Companies rated in the CEI include Fortune magazine’s 500 largest publicly traded businesses, American Lawyer magazine’s top 200 revenue-grossing law firms (AmLaw 200), and hundreds of publicly and privately held mid- to large-sized businesses.
The CEI rates companies on detailed criteria falling under four central pillars:
● Non-discrimination policies across business entities
● Equitable benefits for LGBTQ+ workers and their families
● Supporting an inclusive culture
● Corporate social responsibility
The full report is available online at www.hrc.org/cei.
“For well over two decades, businesses have played an important role in furthering LGBTQ+ equality by centering employee needs and voices when it comes to workplace inclusion. While there is much more work to be done, year-over-year growth in CEI participation is evidence of a business community that recognizes the responsibility and value in upholding equity and inclusion,” said RaShawn “Shawnie” Hawkins, Human Rights Campaign Sr Director of Workplace Equality. “Our goal at the Human Rights Campaign Foundation is to work in a spirit of partnership with companies, providing educational resources and leading benchmarking, and collaborating on ways for businesses to support the LGBTQ+ community at a time when we face unprecedented legislative attacks, heightened anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric and physical violence. The CEI is an ever-evolving tool – a blueprint that companies can use to show up more effectively in supporting their LGBTQ+ employees and their families.”
The Human Rights Campaign Foundation is the educational arm of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America's largest civil rights organization working to achieve equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ+) people. Through its programs, the HRC Foundation seeks to make transformational change in the everyday lives of LGBTQ+ people, shedding light on inequity and deepening the public’s understanding of LGBTQ+ issues, with a clear focus on advancing transgender and racial justice. Its work has transformed the landscape for more than 15 million workers, 11 million students, 1 million clients in the adoption and foster care system and so much more. The HRC Foundation provides direct consultation and technical assistance to institutions and communities, driving the advancement of inclusive policies and practices; it builds the capacity of future leaders and allies through fellowship and training programs; and, with the firm belief that we are stronger working together, it forges partnerships with advocates in the U.S. and around the globe to increase our impact and shape the future of our work.
ABOUT ASSOCIATED BANC-CORP
Associated Banc-Corp (NYSE: ASB) has total assets of $42 billion and is the largest bank holding company based in Wisconsin. Headquartered in Green Bay, Wisconsin, Associated is a leading Midwest banking franchise, offering a full range of financial products and services from more than 200 banking locations serving more than 100 communities throughout Wisconsin, Illinois and Minnesota. The Company also operates loan production offices in Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, New York, Ohio and Texas. Associated Bank, N.A. is an Equal Housing Lender, Equal Opportunity Lender and Member FDIC. More information about Associated Banc-Corp is available at www.associatedbank.com.