Adopted by the Durango Creative District Board of Directors in July 2020

Durango Creative District respects and encourages our Board of Directors, staff, and volunteer differences in age, color, disability, ethnicity, family or marital status, gender identity or expression, language, national origin, physical and mental ability, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, veteran status, and other characteristics that make our organization unique.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Mission Statement:

To support a full creative life for all, Durango Creative District commits to implementing policies and practices that respect, celebrate, and promote diversity, inclusion and equity.

Diversity is the presence and acceptance of difference within a giving setting. This can be individual characteristics such as race, ethnicity, gender, religion, political ideologies, sexual orientation, age, physical abilities or socio-economic status. These characteristics also may include life experiences and cognitive approaches toward problem solving.

DEFINITION OF EQUITY: Equity is an approach that ensures everyone has access to the same opportunities. We recognize that we don’t all start from the same place, because advantages and barriers exist; equity is a process that acknowledges this and seeks to correct the imbalance. Equity ensures people with marginalized identities have the opportunity to grow, contribute, and develop.

DEFINITION OF INCLUSION: Inclusion is the act of making people with different identities feel valued and welcomed within a given setting. Longtime Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion educator, Verna Myers, said: “Diversity is being asked to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.” Inclusion isn’t a natural consequence of diversity. You can have a diverse team of talent, but that doesn’t mean they feel welcomed or valued or are given opportunities to grow.


1) Acknowledge and report any inequities within our policies, systems, programs, and services, and report organization progress
2) Cultivate an inclusive workplace where Directors, staff, and volunteers’ unique talents, skills and perspectives are valued and leveraged
3) Create a sense of belonging within the organization where every Director, staff person and volunteer can contribute to the organization in a unique and meaningful way
4) Ensure respectful and appropriate communication among Directors, staff and volunteers
5) Employ caring and empathetic leadership that values diversity and inclusion
6) Ensure equal opportunity with proactive workplace resolutions
7) Identify and utilize change cohorts outside of the organization that can train Directors, staff and volunteers on practices and strategies
8) When practical for the organization as a whole, accommodate flexible work arrangements in recognition of the needs of individuals to balance their personal and professional lives
9) Ensure programs and projects of the DCD use consistent, structured and objective criteria and processes
10) Identify and address any barriers that inhibit inclusion in development and leadership opportunities
11) Advocate for public and private-sector policy that promotes cultural equity

Acknowledgements and Affirmations:

1) In the United States, there are systems of power that grant privilege and access unequally such that inequity and injustice result, and this systemic inequity must be continuously addressed and changed.
2) Cultural equity is critical to the long-term viability of the creative sector.
3) We must all hold ourselves and others accountable, because acknowledging and challenging our inequities and working in partnership is how we will make change happen.
4) Everyone deserves equal access to a full, vibrant creative life, which is essential to a healthy and democratic society.


All Board of Directors, staff and volunteers of the Durango Creative District have a responsibility to treat others with dignity and respect at all times. All Board of Directors, staff and volunteers are expected to exhibit conduct that reflects inclusion. Any staff person found to have exhibited any inappropriate or discriminatory conduct or behavior against others may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment. Board of Directors and Volunteers found to have exhibited any inappropriate or discriminatory conduct may be asked to vacate their seat on the Board or committee.
Directors, staff and volunteers who believe they have been subjected to any kind of discrimination that conflicts with the organization’s diversity policy and initiatives should seek assistance, in writing and with notice, to any of the following parties:

Should any issues arise, please email [email protected] or contact the following parties:

Executive Director Hayley Kirkman
Board President Charles Leslie
Board Vice President Brenda Macon
Board Treasurer Jeroen van Tyn
Board Secretary Jim Youssef