Click OK to login and restart your reservation.
Click Cancel to continue with your reservation without logging in.
“Making a case for diversity and inclusion at American is like pushing on an open door...we're in the business of breaking barriers. There is always a way to be more inclusive and more welcoming and the people being honored here today are helping us get there,” Tom Horton, Chairman, President and CEO of AMR.
The 2012 Earl G. Graves Award for Leadership was presented to American Airlines employees Sebrenda Clifton and Joseph Huggins in a special award ceremony at the C.R. Smith Museum hosted by the Diversity and Talent Development Team. This marks the fourth annual celebration and awards ceremony to recognize employees for their work in advancing diversity and inclusion within the company and in their communities.
American Airlines introduced the award in 2008 upon the retirement of Earl G. Graves, Sr. from the AMR Board of Directors and the AMR Board's Diversity Committee. The legendary publisher and founder of Black Enterprise magazine brought his creativity and business acumen to American and the AMR Board for 13 years, and helped American to establish a practical, business-minded approach to diversity.
The honorees received recognition for their phenomenal community service and individual work with all the Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) at their locations, as well as exemplifying Mr. Graves' philosophy that “Diversity efforts are not separate and apart from business goals.”
Candidates are nominated by their fellow employees. Honorees are then chosen by a selection committee comprised of senior management and members of the company's Diversity Advisory Council based upon three primary selection criteria:
Sebrenda Clifton joined American Airlines in 1991 at the Southeastern Reservations Office (SERO) as a Domestic Sales agent where she is now employed as a Platinum Desk agent. She has played an instrumental part in the success of the SERO AAERG, sister chapters and other ERGs as a whole. Her passion and outstanding leadership with the AAERG National Convention, community initiatives and in helping to create a diverse workplace has earned Sebrenda the respect of many. Clifton was instrumental in inviting some of the original Tuskegee Airmen to attend an employee event, bringing Black History alive for all to learn and enjoy. During Clifton's tenure as a member of American's Diversity Advisory Council, she played a key role in assisting with the development of the first annual Business of Diversity Conference, organizing system-wide fundraisers for Hurricane Katrina survivors, and mentoring the SERO chapter of the Asian Pacific Islander Employee Resource Group.
Joseph Huggins, a 24-year veteran of American Airlines, began his career as a custodian and from there he became a Fleet Service Clerk and shortly after began soaring through the skies as a Flight Attendant. Huggins is now employed as a Flight Service Manager at Chicago O'Hare International Airport. For the last twelve years, he has served as an associate pastor of Crusaders church, overseeing the youth department. Huggins was nominated for the Earl G. Graves award by his entire department for his efforts in spearheading fundraisers for the Lupus Foundation of America, Sickle Cell Disease Association of Illinois, Haiti Earthquake Relief and an annual Toy Drive for children in the Chicago area. Through his philanthropy efforts and leadership, Huggins, has collectively raised over $10,000 for other charitable endeavors.
In this photo: Denise Lynn, Senior Vice President-People, Joseph Huggins, Manager, ORD Flight Services, Sebrenda Clifton, SERO Reservations Representative, Thomas Horton, Chairman, President and CEO of AMR
“I hope that American Airlines will continue to use Employee Resource Groups as effective ambassadors for the case of Diversity and Inclusion at American Airlines.” --Sebrenda Clifton, Platinum Desk Agent, Southeastern Reservations Office
“Make a career of humanity. It will enrich your spirit as nothing else possibly can. It will give you that rare sense of nobility that can only spring from love and selflessly helping your fellow man.”
--Joseph Huggins, Flight Service Manager, Chicago O'Hare International Airport