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Statement on Diversity, Inclusion, & Privilege

Stone Bench Consulting was founded with the intent of providing services to the WNY and broader communities that foster necessary growth and development, allowing our region and the wider world to become the best version of themselves. This includes the recognition that writ large, we must universally do a better job at understanding our identities and attached privileges, and at addressing the inequities that stunt our collective progress across all spectrums of racial, gender, socio-economic, LGTBQ+, ability-based, and other types of difference.


To that end, Stone Bench’s founder, Jeremy Besch, routinely and openly acknowledges his privileged status as an able-bodied, middle-aged, middle-class, straight, white male. This identity has afforded Jeremy a significant amount of privilege over the course of his personal and professional lives, and he recognizes the responsibility that this carries in ensuring that others who don’t share these privileges are granted the same quantity and quality of access. While he cannot share the same experiences as his friends and colleagues of color, of different gender, or of different status, Jeremy is committed to using his own background, training, and experiences to identify across those differences whenever he can, and to stand as an ally with those from whom privilege and access are withheld.


As a practice, Stone Bench is committed to engaging the community in conversations and training about the importance of this work, and in initializing the first steps necessary for growth. Beyond those first steps, Stone Bench is equally committed to steering the community towards DEIJ practitioners who have direct experience with the obstacles being addressed. This authentic, representative engagement helps to ensure that the necessary work is driven by those who understand it best, leading to outcomes that best serve our shared purpose.

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