Putting the “E” in DE&I is intentional at Fort Worth-based GM Financial. Shunda Robinson, the company’s Global SVP of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, works to shape the company’s practices and impact in that full context every day.
Robinson, who is described as “the catalyst for growing and evolving GM Financial into a DE&I innovator and leader in the automotive industry,” was recently named a 2021 Automotive News Notable Champion of Diversity in Automotive.
Since her start at the company in 2015, Robinson has created, nurtured, and advocated for programs that led to measurable success, including increasing the number of diverse leaders. “Today, 28 percent of leaders are professionals of color and 35 percent of leaders are women,” the company said.
Like many leaders, the pandemic challenged Robinson, who realized “her team needed to pivot.” She organized 60 virtual listening sessions to create a safe space for employees.
“It challenged our leaders to step into a place that they normally were not comfortable,” said Robinson in Automotive News. “In this environment, you have to be very intentional about connecting with people and engaging people.”
Those connection points are key, and in 2020, as part of a GM Financial employee survey, 86 percent of respondents said they feel a strong sense of belonging within the company.
It’s a sense of inclusion that Robinson continues to nurture.
With over 25 years of HR experience, she’s an adviser and partner to executive leadership and a progressive voice on sustainable DE&I strategies. Robinson has also become a voice on Capitol Hill, where she collaborates with lawmakers on improving DE&I practices in the public and private sectors.
“Day in and day out, Shunda ensures that GM Financial embraces an inclusive culture that honors and respects the company’s team members, customers, dealers and communities,” said Dan Berce, GM Financial president and CEO said in a statement. “By incorporating our DE&I initiatives into our core company values, the creation of a more diverse workforce drives better outcomes for the business.”
The Notable Champion of Diversity in Automotive program recognizes individuals striving for diversity, equity and inclusion in the automotive industry. The honorees of Automotive News Notable Champions of Diversity in Automotive was picked by Automotive News journalists “from scores of nominees,” the publication said. Robinson is featured in the publication’s December 2021 Yearbook Edition
GM Financial, the financial services arm of GM, is a global provider of auto finance, with operations in the United States, Latin America, Canada, Europe, and China.
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