System Soft values its diverse and inclusive work environment. Join us as we honor the past, celebrate the present and are inspired by the endless achievements of Black Americans.
During February, the United States reveres Black History Month. Officially recognized in 1976, Black History Month has been an important time of acknowledgment every year since its inception.
This month celebrates the achievements of Black Americans in the past and present of our country, and their ongoing successes. It’s a month for recognizing their central role in U.S. history and their cultural contributions to technology and entrepreneurship.
As a minority-owned business, System Soft is privileged to observe the month, while remembering this affirmation must go beyond just this one span of time and celebrate with meaningful black history month employee engagement.
To commend Black History Month and the enduring story of Black history and excellence, System Soft is highlighting some of its own employees. Black History Month for employers is important to support diversity and inclusion and share stories of their employees’ lives and heritage.
In today’s post, System Soft is spotlighting Rhakeem Garner, a graphic designer. Rhakeem, who has been with System Soft since Fall 2021, has kindly answered seven questions about his career, life and heritage.
Here’s more about Rhakeem in his own words.
Meet Rhakeem Garner, Graphic Designer
What do you do at System Soft?
I work with internal and external clients to deliver graphics in a variety of areas, including social media, webinar presentations, client proposals, and much more.
What three words best describe you?
Curious, compassionate, thoughtful.
What does Black History Month mean to you?
Black History Month is a time to celebrate and honor those who have made meaningful contributions to not just American history, but world history.
It is also a time to recognize that they overcame many limitations that were imposed upon them in their process of changing the world.
I like to be aware that these same character traits that we celebrate are not something relegated to the distant past, but we see individuals today showing those same heroic traits, which we admire, and they should also be recognized.
What influential Black role models do you look up to, and why?
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. His message of unity, his persistence and courage to stand for what he believed in made humanity, as a collective, better than it was before he lived.
Allen Garner, my father. He always encouraged me to not only be proud of my heritage, but to be curious and seek knowledge from all cultures in order to grow in understanding. I was raised to always do what you say you are going to do. And to always treat everyone how you would like to be treated.
I do my best to make sure I always have integrity in everything I do.
One of System Soft’s core values is Diversity and Inclusion. Can you share an example of how System Soft embraces this value throughout the organization’s mission and initiatives?
As part of the creative team, I get the opportunity to work with an incredible group of people from around the world and from all walks of life.
Our creative campaigns cover Black History, Pride Month, Asian American Heritage Month and India Republic Day, among many others.
Being a part of System Soft has helped me connect with our global team, receive invaluable feedback to grow as a designer and share my unique perspective and experiences to add to our team’s efforts.
What moment in Black history influenced or shaped your career/life or one that resonates with you?
The formation of jazz music and its many pioneers resonates with me as an artist and musician. Specifically, John Coltrane‘s brilliance and groundbreaking journey as an artist, and his legacy of self-expression.
Listening to his music inspires me to write, illustrate, compose and dedicate myself to lifelong learning and practice in order to be better at my chosen crafts.
If you could have a conversation with a civil rights activist, who would it be, and why?
Nelson Mandela to learn on a deeper level how he used patience, compassion, forgiveness and courage under duress to inspire millions.
Black History Month Journey on Social
Throughout the month, follow, interact and share this journey on System Soft’s blog and social media. There, System Soft will highlight famous quotes, fun facts and inspiring individual stories, and showcase those among System Soft’s team who make a difference.
On System Soft’s blog, other employees (Phoenix Wooldridge and Byron Hutchinson) will be spotlighted and celebrated during black history month, as we stay committed to our mission and core values, appreciating the support and kindness we give each other.