Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
At CalPERS we're committed to people — the people we serve, those who work here, and the larger community around us. As the nation's largest public pension fund and an organization with global impact, fostering an inclusive culture that welcomes diversity of thought, experience, and background is vital to what we do. We take our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) seriously.
Di · ver · si · ty
The inherent and acquired qualities that make us unique as individuals.
Eq · ui · ty
Ensuring that access, resources, and opportunities are provided for all to succeed and grow.
In · clu · sion
A practice to maintain a positive environment where all individuals feel recognized and valued.
Because we’ve seen the difference that our DEI practices, which are designed to cultivate high-performing teams, can make on our customer service and financial bottom line.
DEI Framework and Recent Accomplishments
Over the past two decades, we’ve refined our practices and enhanced our knowledge, and we’ll continue to do so in years to come.
In 2021, we sharpened our focus on DEI and developed a new DEI Framework. Through this Framework, we’re actively engaged with initiatives to increase the integration of DEI into all aspects of our organization. The Framework has five priority areas that closely align with our mission, vision, and values.
Goal: Bring DEI best practices into CalPERS’ culture
Objective: Increase awareness, build mutually rewarding relationships, and foster collaboration.
- Conducted multiple all-team seminars on unconscious bias to enhance cultural competence and foster trust.
- Developed DEI Certificate Program for internal team members.
- Our Disability Advisory Committee (CDAC) participated in Statewide discussions regarding CDAC’s continued success.
Goal: A high performing, equitable, and diverse workforce
Objective: Ensure Human Resources processes are in place to strengthen diversity in recruitment, retention, equity, and succession.
- Implemented DEI language into our recruitment materials and expanded training and career development opportunities for advancement.
- Launched a new management course for leaders.
- Implemented a new course for team members called Strategies for Your Leadership Role.
Goal: Equitable health outcomes for members and their families
Objective: Ensure all health members have the opportunity to attain the highest level of health possible.
- Created the Health Demographic Profile (HDP) in our myCalPERS member self-service portal, which allows health members to self-report their race, ethnicity, preferred language, sexual orientation, and gender identity. Information from the HDP will allow us to strengthen our health equity commitment.
- Proposed Health Benefit Design Changes for 2023, which includes updating the infertility benefit definition and reproductive health equity language.
- Instituted health equity health plan requirements for 2022 that include race and ethnicity reporting requirements, National Multicultural Health Standards and Certification requirements, and frequent communication and collaboration with health plans.
Goal: High Performing Supplier Diversity Program
Objective: Better understand supplier community through the lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Increased vendor and supplier participation in a voluntary program that helps us better understand this community through the lens of DEI. Our changes to simplify this program and methods of soliciting vendor and supplier input resulted in a 200% increase in participation.
- Assisted business partners with becoming Small Business (SB) and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) certified with the Department of General Services.
- Our SB/DVBE Advocate was awarded the Bronze Advocate of the Year by the California Department of General Services.
Goal: Leverage the DEI Framework and Sustainable Investments Program to improve investment outcomes
Objective: Deliver returns through the identification, analysis, and management of high-value sustainable investment risks and opportunities.
- A DEI survey of external investment managers was conducted to better understand our external partners’ approach to human capital management.
- Presented at the “Partners in Policy: Strengthening Black Wall Street” Economic Empowerment Day, a commemoration of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission.
- Responded to the SEC climate-related disclosures consultation and elevated the issues of environmental racism and the treatment of indigenous people.
CalPERS Diversity Outreach Program (CDOP)
In 2007, we became the first State Agency in CA and the first pension fund to create a dedicated program to coordinate and promote diversity efforts with external stakeholders. Since then, CDOP has been dedicated to fostering an inclusive environment and raising awareness about the value of diverse perspectives, experiences, cultures, backgrounds, and abilities represented at the organization.
Employee Resource Groups (ERGs)
We have two ERGs where team members from across the enterprise actively engage in spreading awareness on DEI and disability topics in the workplace:
CDIG aims to foster an inclusive environment where respect and openness bridge our different ideas, experiences, perspectives, and cultures to enrich our workplace. CDIG was recognized by the Association of ERG & Council Honors Award with a Spotlight Award for Best Practices.
CDAC is dedicated to the inclusion and equality of team members with disabilities and ensures our environment is accessible to all, regardless of disability type. CDAC promotes its mission of inclusion by developing and sponsoring employee awareness programs and events.
CDAC advises and assists the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) officer on the development, implementation, and evaluation of EEO programs and activities, which may be mandated, or otherwise provided for, in the Federal Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. CDAC was recognized two years in a row by the Association of California State Employees with Disabilities and the State Disability Advisory Committee with the “DAC of the Year” award in 2020 and 2021.
DEI Advisory Council
In 2020, we formed the DEI Advisory Council. The DEI Advisory Council, working under the direction of the Chief Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer, is the primary deliberative body for DEI initiatives within the organization. The DEI Advisory Council includes stakeholders from across the enterprise. The role of the Council includes, but is not limited to, supporting our strategic goals and tactical initiatives as identified in the CalPERS’ Strategic Plan and Business Plan.