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Goizueta Business School creates John R. Lewis Racial Justice Case Competition

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Goizueta Business School creates John R. Lewis Racial Justice Case Competition

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FILE PHOTO: U.S. Rep. John Lewis talks about education and his namesake schooL. An Atlanta school, John Lewis Invictus Academy, has been named after the longtime congressman and civil-rights icon. BRYN MCCARTHY / WABE


Atlanta, GA — Focusing on the intersection of business and racial inequality, Goizueta Business School is building a business case competition to look at how companies can address racial injustice within their organizations, a press release says. Led by MBA student Willie Sullivan, Goizueta Business School launched the John R. Lewis Racial Justice Case Competition.

Sullivan (‘21MBA) started the idea this summer after the police shootings of Breonna Taylor, George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery. He saw businesses releasing statements on racial injustice but wondered what happens after the statement is posted. What are companies doing to address issues of racial injustice? In talking with fellow Goizueta MBA students, he found many students wanted to be involved but did not know where to start.

This first of its kind competition — named for the late Atlanta Congressman — focuses on the intersection of business and racial inequality. Companies including Walmart, Salesforce, HP, Johnson & Johnson and Truist Bank have joined as corporate partners to not only financially support the competition but also serve as models to help their organizations address structural racism. Teams from MBA programs across the country will investigate how their assigned corporation can best use its resources to address issues of racial injustice. The teams will examine disparities in wealth, health and education.

The John R. Lewis Racial Justice Case Competition currently has applications from teams from more than 40 business schools including Harvard Business School, Yale School of Management, Wharton, Northwestern Kellogg and more. The application period is open through November 30. The goal is to create opportunities of education and action by engaging multiracial/ethnic teams to look beyond short-term solutions and statements to long-term, lasting change and actions addressing racial justice in major corporations.

“Long term, my dream is that because someone took part in this competition and was able to research and understand issues of racial inequality and injustice at a deeper level, that person makes those learnings a part of their decision-making process when they are in a leadership position,” said Sullivan.

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