AEO ICON Finalist: Terry Roberts, Vice President Employment Law and Chief Inclusion and Diversity Officer

Each year, AEO honors one associate who has achieved significant accomplishments, personifies our values and who has left an indelible impact on our company and people. Over the next several weeks, we will spotlight the top three finalists for the 2019 AEO ICON.

Meet Terry Roberts, Vice President Employment Law and Chief Inclusion & Diversity Officer. As AEO’s primary attorney focused on employment law, Terry has been a consummate professional and trusted business partner since joining the organization in 2016. In his role, Terry provides guidance on all legal matters relating to our associates including immigration and employment law issues.

Terry also spearheads our Inclusion and Diversity (I&D) efforts across AEO. This includes leading the I&D Alliance which is focused on creating an environment at AEO where everyone feels respected and empowered. The I&D Alliance is structured around three key pillars of inclusion: hiring, culture, and development. Terry’s partnership with the recruiting team has helped create relationships with diverse organizations such as HBCU’s and nonprofit organizations that help create access to diverse populations.

In 2019, Terry was pivotal in the creation and rollout of the AEO Sexual Harassment Training across the US and Canada. Terry designed comprehensive, innovative and interactive training materials to educate all of our corporate associates on how to prevent and recognize sexual harassment in the workplace. He coordinated logistics to train over 300 associates in more than 15 sessions across several states. He cleverly referred to the training as a “Terry Talks” and delivered the content in a manner that was comprehensible and relatable to participants. This was evident by the amount of participation and dialogue generated in the sessions. In the spirit of “Getting Real,” Terry even managed to incorporate current events and case studies to the discussion to help participants understand complex concepts, such as adverse and disparate impact. We received a flurry of positive feedback following the training. Can you believe that? Positive, glowing feedback on a Mandatory Sexual Harassment Training! Kudos, Terry!

Terry leads with authenticity –it’s his core value. He firmly believes that associates should have pride in who they are and not be afraid to say and live it. It’s that value that empowers him to drive change in our organization and to build relationships with associates at every level.

Congrats, Terry, on your nomination!