June is Pride Month, a time to celebrate LGBTQ+ culture, history, and progress. The Wills Group and our family of businesses – Dash In, Splash In and SMO Motor Fuels – are proud to support the LGBTQ+ community and embrace diversity and inclusion as core values. As part of our commitment to creating an inclusive workplace and serving our diverse communities, Dash In will be hosting our first tent at the Capital Pride Festival on Sunday, June 11th. 

The Capital Pride Festival takes place annually in Washington D.C. and is one of the largest celebrations of the LGBTQ+ community in the country. The festival brings together people of all identities to celebrate diversity, promote equality, and foster understanding. It is a time to show support for those who identify as LGBTQ+ and to raise awareness about the challenges that still exist for many LGBTQ+ people. 

We invite everyone to stop by our Dash In tent at the Festival to enter for a chance to win a $500 Dash In gift card and receive giveaways including Dash In branded bottle openers, beach balls, and drinking cups. Attendees can also learn about our Dash In convenience store brand and the Wills Group’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Our tent will also feature information about our career opportunities, plus our ongoing community engagement initiatives. We are excited to engage with attendees and to show our support for the LGBTQ+ community.

At the Wills Group and our family of brands, diversity, equity, and inclusion are core values that guide everything we do. We serve diverse communities, and we ourselves represent diverse staff. We recognize that diversity makes us stronger, and we are committed to creating a workplace where all employees feel valued, respected, and supported. 

To further this commitment, we conduct internal surveys and interviews with employees to explore what more we can do to provide equitable opportunities for all. “We’ve given our employees a voice to feel like they play a significant role in advancing our diversity, equity, and inclusion platform,” says Julian B. (Blackie) Wills III, President and COO of the Wills Group. “If market leadership is the goal, and it is, every employee needs equitable opportunities to gain experience and grow in their field. That’s how we plan to become the preferred choice for our customers in the Mid-Atlantic.” 

Our internal surveys inform many of our decisions around benefits, perks, and our recruiting practices. We believe that by embracing diversity and fostering an inclusive culture, we can better serve the diverse communities we work with. To achieve this, we’ve implemented several initiatives to foster an inclusive workplace, including:

  • DEI training:  We provide regular DEI training to employees on topics like inclusive leadership, managing biases and embracing differences.
  • Staff advocates: We’ve appointed key staff who are responsible for developing programs and practices aimed at advancing our DEI goals throughout our family of businesses. 
  • ERGs: We encourage employees with shared experiences to form Employee Resource Groups and work together on special projects.
  • Diverse recruiting: We actively seek to recruit employees from diverse backgrounds.

Pride Month is an important time to reflect on the progress that has been made towards LGBTQ+ equality, and to acknowledge the work that still needs to be done. By participating in the Capital Pride Festival, we hope to show our support for the LGBTQ+ community and to promote acceptance and equality for all. 

The Wills Group and our family of companies are proud to celebrate individuality and strive for a more inclusive future. We look forward to presenting Dash In at our first Capital Pride Festival on June 11th, and we hope to see you there!

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