Agribusiness giant Land O’Lakes appointed Beth Ford as CEO this week, setting a milestone for LGBT+ business inclusion. Ford joins the ranks of Fortune 500 CEOs as the first out gay woman and one of just 25 female CEOs.
Recent HRC research suggests that fewer than half of LGBT+ people in the United States are out in the workplace, and many go back into the closet for their first job. Often LBGT+ leaders are only afforded the luxury of coming out after establishing themselves in the corporate space. Ford’s story suggests an alternate pathway, as she climbed the ladder while being openly gay.
“I made a decision long ago to live an authentic life and if my being named CEO helps others do the same, that’s a wonderful moment,” Ford said.
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