May 19, 2022

Efforts to improve diversity in motorsports are ongoing

Programs aim to increase diversity in motorsports. (Jill Sheridan WFYI)

Programs aim to increase diversity in motorsports. (Jill Sheridan WFYI)

The drive to increase diversity in motorsports continues at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

A recent panel discussion, “Full Speed Ahead” brought together leaders who work to increase inclusivity within the IndyCar Series.  IMS partnered with Leadership Indianapolis and the Indianapolis Foundation to host the event. 

Whether it’s behind the wheel or in the garage, women and people of color are unrepresented at the track. Likewise communities have been historically excluded from the business of racing.

Leadership Indianapolis Director of Programs Ebony Chappel said change starts with conversations.

“Talk about the opportunities that exist for people to not only come in and enjoy the environment, enjoy the Month of May but also participate from an economic development perspective,” Chappel said.

Last summer, IndyCar and IMS launched “Race for Equality & Change,” an effort to support inclusivity and diversity within the industry. IMS Chief Diversity Officer Jimmie McMillian said the speedway and the series are committed to diversity improvement.

“We looked at ourselves internally at our employee base and said ‘OK how do we need to change in the recruitment, retention and promotion of diverse individuals, particularly women and people of color but also LGBTQ,” McMillian said.

The event was part of Leadership Indianapolis’ Opportunity Indianapolis (OI) Insights series.

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