Pride Month is celebrated annually during the month of June in honor of the 1969 Stonewall riots that took course over the span of nearly a week after police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in Greenwich Village, NYC. Anually, folks around the world gather to celebrate the long and storied history of queerness through parades, festivals, workshops, concerts, picnics, and more.
Censys Pride Month programming
At Censys, Glow was formed as an employee resource group for LGBTQIA+ identifying Censys employees. The DandIE Committee,a group of volunteer employees who are champions for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, worked together to provide our fellow coworkers with a robust set of programming for the month of June:
As mentioned in our blog, “How We Celebrated Black History Month at Censys,” VP of People & Culture Jasmine Burns puts a great deal of care and effort into ensuring that for these types of culturally significant months, we put together “thoughtful programming that finds a balance between celebrating, honoring, and learning.”
Jasmine puts a particularly caring attention to detail specifically on ensuring the effort is distributed amongst team members who both do and do not identify as LGBTQIA+. She asserts, “equally important is ensuring we have the sufficient leads for all of the programming — making sure it doesn’t fall on one person, also being mindful of tokenism and activating our employees outside of that identity group to support.”
For our pride month programming, the effort was distributed between Glow and DandIE members who volunteered their time – ensuring that Glow members didn’t feel the brunt of the work dropped on them while also providing a platform for those who wanted to participate.
The programming included informative, thought-provoking presentations & discussions including “An Intro to LGBTQIA+ terminology,” “Rainbow Capitalism & the Commodification of Pride,” “Raising Kids (& Parents),” and “Gender Beyond the Binary.” Historical presentations covering the Stonewall Riots and the origins of Pride Month, Loving Day and its lasting impacts, and the black and queer origins of house music filled out our month. Finally, we also had a live viewing of popular YouTuber Contrapoints followed by a brief discussion.
Censys employees reflect on Pride Month
Censys employees, both those in and out of the LGBTQIA+ community, shared the wealth of knowledge they gained from activities they participated in this month.
Marissa Henri, Manager of UX Design & member of Glow shared, “The history of Pride Month and the movement’s evolution to the mainstream was eye-opening for me. Stemming from the Stonewall Riots and the ensuing radical acts of resistance to the current-day corporate commodification of this beautiful celebration of community has been highly enlightening. It was important to look at how pseudo-allyship presents itself so that corporations can understand how to truly support and be allies to the queer community. Rainbow logo changes are basic.”
Pride Month at Censys wasn’t only about education – it was also about celebrating & supporting the LGBTQIA+ members of the team and providing a safe space for meaningful conversations.
Maya Ziv, Software Engineer & member of Glow said, “It was so wonderful to celebrate pride with all my queer coworkers! I feel like our conversations were able to get to a level of depth and complexity that was super interesting and personally impactful, diving into questions of presentation and social issues and how we move through our workplace / the world. It’s a really smart and wonderful group that I feel so lucky to be a part of.”
Jennifer Weddel, Sales Enablement Manager, started working at Censys during pride month and details her experience, “In my first 2 days at Censys I immediately felt like I was home. Many companies tout a supportive community but we do more than talk. I felt welcomed, like I have a voice and am honored and appreciated for my authentic self. I am so happy I have joined the team.”
“I truly have never in my career felt the kind of support I feel at Censys,” Zach Anderson, Senior Visual Designer & co-founder of Glow, shared while recounting this month’s festivities, “I had so many coworkers reach out to me following my presentation to show their support and share their love with me. I truly get a warm fuzzy feeling knowing that the place I work supports all of who I am and encourages me to bring my full authentic self to work every single day. The fact that Censys also provides me with a platform to share thought-provoking ideas and engage in discussion with my supportive coworkers.”
Rachel Benson, VP of Corporate Marketing, expressed her delight around the month’s programming, “The authentic, honest and fun discussions that we are able to have at Censys are incredibly moving to me. We have created a safe space where folks can ask questions and have dialogue free from judgment, and I’m really proud of that. Each year our Pride programming gets richer and more fun, and it’s my hope that everyone at Censys feels the allyship each day they come to work.”
Olga O’Dvaier, Marketing Intern & member of Glow, also shared her thoughts, “As a member of Glow, I feel extremely grateful to be able to celebrate pride with Censys. It makes me feel very welcomed in the community, and it is so special to know that I can truly be myself in my workspace. Being a part of Glow made this pride month special as it showed me how workplaces can be welcoming and accepting.“
Continuing to support our LGBTQIA+ team members all year long
We’re excited to share that members of Censys Glow & the DandIE Committee will continue the conversation with “Proud All Year” – a series of additional presentations, discussions, and live viewings – throughout the course of the year because one month simply isn’t enough time to capture, share, and celebrate the richness and beauty of the LGBTQIA+ community with our coworkers.
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