JUNE 4, 2020 – Recent events, including the tragic killing of George Floyd, underscore the ever-present reality that racist systems persist in our country and in our local communities. These same systems are at the root of racial disparities in health, education, and economic outcomes exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic. We acknowledge the pervasiveness of racism and its impact on the Black community and that we all have a responsibility to speak up and act. Only intentional work to dismantle these racist systems will lead to equitable opportunities and access for all.
BioSTL’s contribution to improving the St. Louis region is through innovation and entrepreneurship. We reaffirm our commitment to employ this mission in a way that promotes equity and reduces economic and health disparities. We have experienced through our inclusion programs and our internal equity audit that intentional, direct support and engagement with Black innovators and entrepreneurs is necessary, yet we recognize that work is insufficient without systems-level change.
We at BioSTL will increase our own learning and more deeply engage Black communities in shaping and delivering our work. We will be intentional about building equity into our work and that of St. Louis’ innovation ecosystem. We will increase our programs that support and invest in minority entrepreneurs, leveraging new relationships and partnerships. We will focus on measurable outcomes and impact, not just activities, in building toward economic equity in St. Louis.
With intentional listening and learning, and with new relationships, we will take action that contributes to dismantling systemic racism that afflicts St. Louis and the United States, and denies Black entrepreneurs equitable opportunities for success.
PRESIDENT & CEO