Difest Speaker Series

Headshot of Rebecca Yang

Becoming better allies in our workplace – Rebecca Yang

Business Advisor, Worldwide Public Sector, Amazon Web Services (USA)

What are the 3 things we need to do to become better allies in our workplace?

1) Educate yourself on the history and lived experiences of marginalized groups, not just those in the United States.

2) Listen to understand

3) Amplify underrepresented voices.

Read the article, “How Can We Better Allies?” for more actionable advice.  

Would you like to share a brief about an inclusion initiative that you have championed (past or present)?

At Facebook, I taught “Be the Ally,” a company-wide program that gives all employees a common language and tools to build an inclusive workplace. I also trained other facilitators to facilitate “Be the Ally” and scaled the program globally. At Amazon, I’m a member of every affinity group and an AWS Inclusion Ambassador, so I connect employees with others who have a common interest in becoming allies, advocates, and agents of change. While serving as a U.S. diplomat with the U.S. Department of State, I expanded U.S. Mission Turkey’s engagement on women’s rights for both Turkish and American women and led the U.S. Consulate in Istanbul’s Federal Women’s Program to advance women in federal service. At Harvard, I co-founded the Harvard Student Gender Equity Leadership Initiative, Harvard’s first cross-school gender equity coalition, and founded the Harvard Student Asian Pacific Coalition Policy Conference, Harvard’s first cross-school Asian Pacific American policy conference.