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Cockroach Labs

POC@CRL: How Our CREWS for People of Color Builds Community

Below is an article originally written by Devonaire Ortiz, and published on Feb 26, 2021. Go to Cockroach Labs company page on PowerToFly to see their open positions and learn more.

CREWS (Cockroach Employees Who Support) are groups intended to create an inclusive environment for Roachers from underrepresented backgrounds and help employees connect with their peers on a deeper level. Groups host events and develop programs to support and advocate for their members, both internally and externally. While these groups are company-sponsored, they are run by employees for employees.

What is POC@CRL?

Our CREWS is a group for people of color at Cockroach Labs and their allies. We get together for everything from happy hours to planning month-long celebrations, all in the name of community.

What is the POC@CRL mission? Why?

The POC@CRL mission is to build a community of people of color and allies at Cockroach Labs that promotes professional and personal development and belonging through peer-led events and initiatives.

We arrived at this mission statement because our founding group recognized the importance of creating space for people of color and driving the events and engagements that are important to us. We sought to empower every member of our intersectional group to use the CREWS resources to thrive and celebrate our cultures.

Can you give us an example of how POC@CRL supports its mission?

POC@CRL was founded just before the coronavirus pandemic made us all home-bound for over a year; this threw a wrench in some of our plans to host speakers and after-work events in person. We did find other ways to connect, though! During Black Women's History Month last year, we established a book fund to cover each member's purchase of a book written by a woman of color and discussed our picks during a virtual happy hour. This month, we're celebrating Black History Month by celebrating Black civil rights leaders, artists, technologists, and more.

Aside from events and programming, our Slack channel serves as a place for members to communicate throughout the year and share ideas, news, and spark conversation.

Tell us about events/programs you're planning for POC@CRL

Though creating a community within our own company is important, we want to connect with more people of color in the tech world and those who want to get started in tech, too. We're looking at ways that we can host events which include folks from outside of our work environment to join a wider network.

Who can join POC@CRL?

Everyone is welcome to join our CREWS; whether you are a person of color or an ally, it's in the name. Cockroach Employees Who Support our mission make POC@CRL possible.

If you see yourself joining our CREWS and helping to keep our community strong, check out our careers page to see if there's a job that fits your interests!

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