Naperville DEI manager updates city council on new initiatives

Naperville DEI manager Dr. Geneace Williams
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Naperville diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) manager Dr. Geneace Williams gave an update at the June 20 city council meeting about group initiatives, employee programs, and department demographics.

Emerging leaders employee engagement recommendations

In May, emerging leaders completed an employee engagement project for the city that was in the works for the past year and a half. Two recommendations from this project will be implemented this summer and fall: a passport program and a department spotlight.

The passport program will let new hires meet all Naperville department workers and department leadership within six months of joining the city.

“When you engage people at this level, what happens is they get a sense of purpose in the work they do,” said Williams. “Employees who get a sense of purpose around what they’re doing have a tendency to be better engaged and to stick around for a longer period of time.”

The department spotlight will a feature in the employee newsletter. It will spread the word about the importance of different departments throughout the city.

“This will help to build connection across all of the departments so that employees really understand their work, and how their work interfaces with what other departments are doing,” said Williams.

Board and commission demographics

Board and commission demographics are now available on the city’s website. They include information about race, gender, and age, as zip codes will be released later in the year.

Race demographics

  • 76% – white or Caucasian
  • 16% – Asian or Asian-American
  • 6% – black or African-American
  • 2% – Hispanic or Latino.

Gender demographics

  • 62% – male
  • 37% – female
  • 1% – transgender

Age demographics 

  • 24% – 25-44 years old
  • 64% – 45-64 years old
  • 12% – 65+ years old

Demographic story maps coming soon

Demographic story maps will be available on the city’s website this summer. According to Williams, these maps will be “a very engaging way of understanding the demographics.”

“You’ll be able to click on different areas within the map, and it will bring up information about particular neighborhoods, communities within the city,” said Williams.

Naperville’s 2023 community survey

The City of Naperville is conducting a community survey this summer, including questions on community livability and the quality of government services. The survey will include questions asking residents of all backgrounds if they feel respected and valued.

Williams will give her next update to city council during its December 2023 meeting.

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