Committing to ACT

We Must Act.

Racial bias and division are woven into the fabric of our society. Every day, members of the Black community encounter racism, bigotry and the threat of violence because of the color of their skin. As we reflect on racial injustices, we know it’s not enough to condemn this bigotry. We must dismantle it in ourselves and our organization.

In 2020, we developed and launched Dow ACTs – our strategic framework designed to address systemic racism and inequity, backed by a multi-million dollar pledge to help accelerate change. ACT is an acronym for three action areas: Advocacy, Community engagement and our Talent pipeline. This strategic framework was informed by input from our employees and Global African Affinity Network (one of our Employee Resource Groups) and has the full support of Dow’s Leadership Team and Board of Directors.


Dow has been at the forefront of corporate advocacy for the LGBTQ+ community. We’ve committed to take similar actions to address racism and racial inequity:


  • Establish a cross-functional Social Justice Council to monitor inequality matters and advise Dow on our response.
  • Drive policy change through engagement at the U.S. state and federal levels, including with the Congressional Black Caucus, and directing funding to organizations dedicated to fighting racial injustice, including judicial reform, healthcare disparities and economic inequity in the Black community.
  • Establish employee paid time off policy for voting and other non-partisan-related civic activities.


  • Launched the Social Justice Council in the U.S.
  • Supported the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's (CBCF) National Racial Equity Initiative for Social Justice. Through this partnership, we helped enable the placement of 16 full-time fellows on Capitol Hill and the Foundation through the John R. Lewis Social Justice Policy Fellowship program.
  • Dow implemented a paid time off policy for voting and other non-partisan related civic activities.
  • Dow joined the Board Diversity Action Alliance as a founding signatory. Signatories commit to increasing or maintaining the number of Black board directors, disclosing their boards’ racial and ethnic composition, and annually publishing a report on company diversity and inclusion efforts.
  • Dow joined the Civic Alliance - a growing, nonpartisan network of more than 220 member companies working together to strengthen our democracy by encouraging civic participation.
  • Karen S. Carter, Dow’s current president of Dow's Packaging & Specialty Plastics business was appointed to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Black Leadership Advisory Council.


We will respond to racism and racial inequality in our communities:


  • Recommit through our Dow Promise Grant Program to positively impact Black communities near Dow locations, where economic and educational challenges may be barriers to success.
  • Include Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a U.S. paid holiday and an opportunity for a day of service.
  • Ensure our procurement practices eliminate any barriers for Black-owned and all minority-owned enterprises to do business with Dow and influence our entire supply chain to do the same.


  • Pledged $600,000 to the Dow Promise program. Since 2020, we’ve supported 47 organizations that positively impact educational and economic challenges for youth and adults of African heritage.
  • Established Martin Luther King Jr. Day as a U.S. paid holiday and an opportunity for a day of service. Since 2020, we’ve partnered with more than 70 organizations to stand against hate, build bridges and heal divides through service opportunities during MLK Day annually.
  • Our Supplier Diversity program continues to make strides in becoming an industry leader. To expand our reach and elevate this business imperative, we created the role of global purchasing director for sustainability, supplier diversity and ESG. In 2022, we surpassed our target and achieved approximately $275 million globally in diverse supplier spend.


We will improve representation across all levels of the company to help and ensure our workforce reflects the stakeholders we serve:


  • Ensure a strong focus on the attraction, development, advancement and retention of talent to create a more diverse and equitable workforce.
  • Join OneTen, a coalition of leading businesses, talent developers and community builders, partnering across the ecosystem to hire, promote and advance 1 million Black individuals and others who do not have a four-year degree into family-sustaining careers over the next decade.
  • Redouble our efforts and maximize the impact of our existing diversity recruiting programs, such as the Diamond Symposium and the BEST Symposium.
  • Require racial equity and advanced inclusion training for all our leaders and Human Resources professionals.
  • Commit to launching and expanding leading academies.


  • Invested more than $5 million to historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and community college skilled trades programs.
    Since 2020, we supported:
    • More than 20 programs across five HBCUs
    • Research experiences for more than 90 students
    • FOSSI scholarships provided to 30 students
    • Project Lead the Way in 24 schools close to HBCUs where 2,300 students improved their academic performance
  • Dow pledged $9 million to the OneTen coalition. Through this partnership, we aim to remove systemic barriers while shifting the focus toward skills to improve job quality and economic mobility for Black talent and, ultimately, all talent, including our frontline workers. Through our partnership to date, Dow has hired 250 people and promoted 60 into OneTen qualifying jobs. We have collaborated across the OneTen ecosystem for best practice leveraging to open new pathways to recruit, promote and retain diverse talent.
  • Completed the second cohort of our Advocacy-in-Action Sponsorship Program for the development and advancement of Black Dow leaders.
  • To reflect our continued commitment to diversifying our talent pipeline, in 2022, Team Dow again hosted two signature internal recruiting events. Diamond Symposium is intended for top U.S. ethnic minority undergraduate students from universities across the United States. In 2022, Dow hosted 58 students and extended 31 internship and full-time offers with 26 acceptances – increasing the offer acceptance rate from 2020 by 40%.
    BEST Symposium is primarily intended to introduce Black, Hispanic and Native American U.S. doctoral and postdoctoral scientists to the wide range of rewarding careers in industrial research and the many opportunities at Dow. Thirty candidates attended the 2022 BEST Symposium, and Dow extended 20 full-time offers with 15 acceptances, the highest absolute number of BEST hires in a single season.
  • Implemented Advanced Inclusion Training containing racial equity topics for U.S.-based people leaders and HR partners.
  • • Established Dow Student Mentor Academies in Saginaw, Mich., and expanded in Texas and Louisiana, to mentor and train underserved student populations through 2026. More than 70 students increased their academic performance and emotional well-being and expanded their network of support. Learn more about the Dow Leadership Academy and the Dow Treasure Academy.

Committing to Progress

We know we must do better going forward and fully commit to our foundational responsibility to human decency. Our work through Dow ACTs is the smart and right thing to do for our business and society. We will continue to share progress as we move forward in our fight for equity.

“It’s not just up to the African American community to fight the racism these incidents reflect. It’s up to all of us, especially those of us who would likely never personally experience a situation like this.”

Jim Fitterling
Chair and Chief Executive Officer




What We're Doing

Shine Inclusion Report 2019 logo

INtersections Progress Report

We're leading with inclusion, focusing on diversity, and embedding equity into our practices, policies and processes—all while amplifying transparency and accountability.


The BEST Symposium introduces Black, Hispanic, and Native American U.S. doctoral and postdoctoral scientists to rewarding careers in industrial research and opportunities with Dow.

Inclusion & Diversity Updates

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