Aucklander Philip Patston, Managing Director of Diversity New Zealand Ltd and an key player in the Arts Access Advocates: A National Partnership project, has been named one of the Top 10 diversity consultants in the inaugural Global Diversity List.
“This is a huge honour and privilege,” said Philip, who has been working on diversity issues in New Zealand for decades, including a period working for the New Zealand Human Rights Commission. “My take on diversity is quite different to usual interpretations, so it’s a humbling experience to have this recognised on the world stage.”
The Global Diversity List, a comprehensive guide to the individuals who are putting diversity at the heart of human resources in the world’s biggest organisations, is supported by The Economist, and was launched at its offices in both London and New York.
Patston has been recognised as a creative and social entrepreneur in New Zealand. His own career diversity has included being a counsellor, social worker and an award-winning professional comedian for more than a decade.
He was the inaugural recipient of the Arts Access Accolade 2014, presented by Dame Rose Horton at the Arts Access Awards ceremony in Parliament.
Richard Benge, Executive Director, Arts Access Aotearoa, said Philip was the unanimous choice to be the inaugural recipient. “Philip is an exceptional leader. He has mentored this organisation, sharing his wisdom, generosity, life experiences and good humour. It’s fantastic to see him recognised internationally for his insights, knowledge and commitment to encouraging a diverse society.”
A focus for Philip is his consultancy, Diversity New Zealand Ltd, which produces social entrepreneurship services and a regular social media presence promoting progressive approaches to all diversity issues.
It is the first time a global assessment of individuals and companies demonstrating a concrete commitment to diversity has been compiled. Organisers, including Google’s former head of diversity and inclusion, Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe, say the assessment will address the weakness in the evaluation of company performance in diversity.
Nominations by Economist readers
Nominated for by readers of The Economist, several thousand nominations were received from every corner of the planet. It was ratified by an independent panel of experts including Palmer-Edgecumbe, The Economist’s Michael Brunt and Toby Burton, Managing Director of the Global Diversity Awards, Linda Riley, President and CEO of GLAAD, Sarah Kate Ellis.
Mark Palmer-Edgecumbe, who is the Chief Executive Officer of the Global Diversity List, said:
“The list marks a seminal moment for the diversity profession, by publicly recognising the world’s most influential, innovative and creative diversity professionals in one comprehensive list for the first time. The list sets the benchmark of exceptional performance in the profession today and creates the role models for the diversity professionals of tomorrow.”