Hispanic Heritage Month: Celebrating Gildan’s Vibrant Hispanic Heritage Through Employee Perspectives
Leading apparel manufacturer Gildan takes pride in celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, with around 45,000 employees worldwide, a significant portion of whom live in Honduras, Nicaragua, and the Dominican Republic or are of Hispanic heritage in North America. Recognizing the Hispanic culture that runs deep at Gildan provides a great opportunity for the organization to mark and honor the invaluable contributions of the Hispanic community to North American history and, of course, the Gildan community. To celebrate, Gildan ran an internal campaign featuring a number of employees who shared their perspectives on what makes them proud of their heritage.
“Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month is an expression of our commitment to inclusivity and a chance to appreciate the unique insights and experiences that our Latin American employees bring to the workplace,” says Karine Doucet, Vice-President of Global Talent Management and Culture at Gildan. “By showcasing the heritage and the various cultures of our Hispanic employees, we foster understanding and strengthen the connection within our diverse workforce.”
Meet two Gildan employees featured during this campaign to learn what their Hispanic heritage means to them:
Born in Honduras, Joseline Bendeck Cooper is a Senior Legal Advisor in Montreal. She first began her journey at Gildan as a legal assistant at Gildan’s Rio Nance manufacturing office. After completing her master’s degree in Scotland, she had the chance to join Gildan’s legal team once again, this time in Canada.
Joseline cherishes her Honduran heritage, celebrating traditions such as gathering with friends and family on Christmas to cook Honduran dishes such as tamales and flan. One of the traits she admires from her culture is the resilient spirit of Hondurans – “even when times are tough, we relentlessly face challenges with a smile on our faces; this part of my culture has instilled in me a sense of gratitude and resilience in the face of adversity,” says Joseline. She attributes her success at Gildan to these learnings, as well as the hard work and determination with which she performs in each of her roles.
Raul Roman, Shipping and Logistics Manager in Charleston, is of Puerto Rican heritage with a cultural mix representing various backgrounds, including Spanish, African, and Taino. Born in New Jersey, he inherited many Puerto Rican traditions from his mother, whether through food, music, or art, that have contributed to shaping his identity. For instance, Raul enjoys celebrating Los 3 Reyes (Three Kings Day), every year on January 6, a holiday acknowledged in many Latin American and Caribbean countries.
A large part of Raul’s identity is the importance he places on family – whether it be his immediate family or work family. “I try to make sure that I’m there for anyone that may need my help or simply need a word of encouragement,” says Raul. He attributes his success at Gildan to his respect for others, his willingness to learn and adapt, and his optimism.
To learn more about Gildan’s commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion click here.