Chuck Dawson

Chuck Dawson
President and CEO, Harland Clarke Holdings Group

Headquarters: San Antonio, Texas
Primary Business: Checks and related products, technology, and data management
Revenues: $1.671 billion
Employees: 6,500

Kaleidoscope of Diversity at Harland Clarke

I’ve always been fond of using the phrase “let’s look at this issue through multiple lenses” as a way to challenge myself and others to consider many different perspectives in viewing an issue. I found that using many lenses helped me determine the best solution, and it didn’t take me long to realize that seeking input from others greatly enriched my decisions and expanded potential solutions.

When Clarke American acquired the John H. Harland Company, I quickly recognized the company’s new Diversity Management program was aligned with principles I’d supported my whole career. It was also a platform we could employ to facilitate the integration of two somewhat different cultures. As we educated our leaders in Diversity Management, I realized we all had much more to learn.

We’ve come a long way since the beginning of our diversity journey. Today, our nationally-ranked and recognized D&I Council drives numerous initiatives impacting our workforce, workplace, and marketplace. Key among these is our Learning Community Series, which invites both external and internal panelists to provide insight and application on a variety of diversity dimensions. Embracing relevant topics such as veterans returning to the workplace, understanding disabilities, and multiple generations in the workplace allows us to engage employees, promote internal education, and development of external partnerships. The ultimate goal is to make our organization more inclusive and understanding. We recognize that the true talent needed to grow our business comes in many different forms.

Our Diversity Management Program continues to provide a foundation for acquisition integration and continues to serve as the fundamental way we conduct business. Each acquisition has broadened our platforms and enriched our workforce with a more diverse group of people resulting in a global employee population. More importantly, we continue to seek ways to ensure that every employee has the ability to fully contribute their unique skills, talents, and perspective to the organization. The result is a beautiful prism of opportunity and innovation that is created by all the unique bits, pieces, and perspectives coming together and illuminated by strategic objectives—so many lenses creating a virtual kaleidoscope. In fact, Kaleidoscope is the name our employees gave our new Diversity Management publication. Indeed, the future looks bright through all our lenses.

Education: BA, MBA, Lamar University
First Job: IBM Sales
What I’m Reading: Waiting for Superman, by Karl Weber, and everything else on education
My Philosophy: Balance
Best Advice: Strive for balance of your family, business and faith. An imbalance in one area can negatively impact the other areas and those around you.
Family: Wife Freddi; children, Chad and Sara; three grandchildren
Interests:Tennis, golf, hunting, fishing, nature, movies
Favorite Charity: Wounded Warriors