Recorded on 11/01/2022

Rethinking the Role of Race in Life & Business with Melvin Gravely

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Recorded on November 1, 2022.

Talking candidly about race and culture has been a taboo topic across many sectors, but none more than the business world. And yet, by not speaking about it, we are doing our organizations, our employees, and ourselves a great disservice.

Melvin Gravely, the majority owner and CEO of a Cincinnati-based commercial construction company, wants to help corporate leaders understand some of the challenges and hard truths facing minorities in a business world. As he explains in his new book, Dear White Friend: The Realities of Race, the Power of Relationships and Our Path to Equity, there are three questions we need to address to really tackle this issue: What is really going on with race in our country? Why must we care? And what can we do about it together?

Without judgment or criticism, Gravely wants us to each ask ourselves, “What is my role in all of this?” In this open and thought-provoking session, Gravely will challenge us to radically rethink how we understand and approach the subject of race in our lives and our companies.


About Melvin Gravely

Mel Gravely is the majority owner and CEO of a commercial construction company in Cincinnati, Ohio. As one of the largest construction companies in the region, it is a consistent member of the Deloitte 100 list of the largest privately owned companies.

An active business and civic leader who has chaired the board of the Cincinnati Regional Chamber of Commerce, Gravely served on the board of the United Way, was a founding board member of the Cincinnati Regional Economic Development Initative (REDI Cincinnati), and vice chairperson of Artswave, the largest community arts fund in the nation. He co-chaired the Cincinnati Regional Business Committee, a group of 100 middle market CEOs working collectively toward meaningful civic action. He is also a board member of several private companies.

Gravely earned a BS in Computer Science from Mount Union University, an MBA from Kent State University, and a Ph.D. from the Union Institute and University. He has written eight business books. He is the father of three adult children and married to Chandra (Webb) Gravely. They have one granddaughter.

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