Inclusion, Diversity, Equity & Access

We are on a continuous journey to enhance the way in which IDEA is embedded in the everyday actions of our business and the experiences of our associates.

Inclusion: AEO will provide an environment where all associates feel a sense of belonging and are able to succeed as their authentic selves

Equity: AEO is committed to fairness in policies, practices, opportunities, and outcomes

Diversity: Difference and individuality make AEO stronger, higher-performing and more innovative

Access: Barriers (both physical and non-physical) should be eliminated to allow stakeholders the ability
to participate in, and realize, all that AEO has to offer


The foundation of IDEA was created by our associates to ensure everyone feels respected and empowered. We structure our efforts under the following pillars: hiring, community and development.


Ensuring candidate diversity in our recruiting process through our commitment to hiring a diverse workforce, welcoming all the unique contributions that our associates bring. Curating interview panels with associates from many different backgrounds. Strengthening our relationships with community organizations and Historically Black Colleges and Universities. Incorporating inclusive leadership and unconscious bias training for all hiring managers.


Fostering a culture of inclusion and a true sense of belonging. With the freedom to be themselves, AEO associates feel valued and appreciated for their contributions. Making a lasting impact in our communities, the AEO Foundation and our corporate charitable giving program has supported the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), The Pittsburgh Promise, Dress Up for Downs, It Gets Better Project, and Big Brothers Big Sisters Workplace Mentoring, among others.


Creating an inclusive and supportive workplace through educating our associates, at all levels, on important topics and issues for marginalized communities. Continuously improving our talent development process, performance metrics, mentorship opportunities, and people analytics to ensure our associates achieve personal and career growth while at AEO. Strengthening our practices with inclusive leadership training and open forum discussions.


A sense of belonging is critical for associates to bring their whole, authentic selves to work. These shared resource interest groups, many tied to AEO’s purpose, values and corporate responsibility, promote educational opportunities, foster a strong community and culture, and provide associates the opportunity to engage with colleagues who have similar interests, hobbies and passions.

Associate Networks
The Green Team
REAL Parents
The REAL Pride Network
Veteran & Military Employee Resource Group
REAL Black Alliance

Associate Connections
The Anti-Racism Connection
New-ish to Pittsburgh
AEO REAL Creators
AEO REAL Jewish Connection
Asian-American Pacific Islander (AAPI)
Mental Inclusivity & Neurodiversity Community


Our culture provides an environment where we learn, grow, support innovation, and empower our people to achieve outstanding results.

Close Knit Co-Mentorship Program
pairs associates from different departments, levels, and experiences to form enriching relationships across the business to foster an appreciation for diverse perspectives.

Personal Retail Enrichment Program (PREP)
connects associates to college students from underrepresented groups within retail, to provide them with both professional and personal development.