While we are in the midst of celebrating and honoring influential figures during Black History Month, Pamela Culpepper is making company history at Prada. Recently, Prada S.p.A. (Prada’s parent company) appointed two new Independent Non-Executive Directors: Pamela Culpepper and Anna Maria Rugarli. Culpepper’s appointment also marked the first time in the company’s century-old history to ever have a Black woman on the Board.

Both new Board members were selected for their backgrounds in Environmental, Social and Governance to support the Board of Directors in its sustainability assessments and decisions with regards to the three courses of action at the basis of the company’s ESG strategy: people, environment and culture.

In addition to her new role, Culpepper is the co-founder of Have Her Back, a female-owned, female led culture consultancy focused on advancing equity for all. Her professional background also includes serving at the head of Human Resources and Diversity and Inclusion departments at some of the world’s largest companies across industries. 

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“People who know me and know what Prada stands for, quickly see what connects us – status quo is simply not an option. I’m proud to be a part of that challenge,” Culpepper tells ESSENCE. “One of Prada’s principles is to go where the risk is. Prada has stepped out front to lead the industry in ESG. It would be easier to fast follow, but that would be counter to both of our instincts. Prada is at the intersection of authentically connecting their values and purpose with the needs and will of their key stakeholders.” She adds, “My role is to help strategically navigate that intersection.”

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