Columbus, GA (WTVM) - Aflac U.S. President Teresa White believes the company has always valued diversity in the marketplace.
What she means, is that the company represents who their customers are; they, she said, are a very diverse group as well.
"At the end of the day, diversity is really about business," White said. "It's about making sure that the people who work here represent the market that we serve."
Black Enterprise Magazine has been gathering a list of the top 50 diverse businesses for over 10 years.
For its 2017 list, the magazine says Aflac stands out because of its commitment to hiring diverse groups of talented, qualified people through all levels of the company.
White said the goal of diversity at Aflac became something tangible for her when she had a conversation with longtime CEO Dan Amos.
"He's not just saying, 'we need a quota,' White said. "[Amos] is saying, 'What I need is diverse thought. I need diverse ideas. I need people to come to the table, that are different from me, so I can make the right decisions."
White, the company's first African-American president and first woman to hold the position, said Aflac's diversity sets an example for the next generation of professionals; showing them corporations will embrace their talent and background.
"I think it allows them to dream.," White said. "It allows them to see themselves in that position, as well."
The numbers among Aflac employees support this recognition. According to the company's social responsibility reports. In 2016, 61 percent of the Aflac's new hires were women and 47 percent were ethnic minorities.
Aflac is one of four Georgia businesses to make the final cut on Black Enterprises Top 50 list. The other three based in Atlanta include Coca-Cola, UPS, and Southern Company.