My name is Arlando Monk-Walls and I'm the CEO of the Visionary League.
Visionary League connects diverse talent in the tech and creative industries to foster opportunities and highlight issues in an effort to impact change related to Diversity & Inclusion, or D&I, in workplaces across Southeastern Wisconsin. Through our concentrated approach, we will drive solutions that prevent barriers and increase representation that will positively impact the greater good of each company we work with. We will also facilitate virtual or in-person D&I trainings, IT workshops, creative design workshops, professional development events, and conferences. At the same time connecting like-minded individuals and organizations to help educate & spread continued awareness. Thus building a visionary network of people inspired to take the lead for change with Diversity and Inclusion.
I started this organization because of myself having issues with obtaining a job in the IT industry. Also the lack of support, and resources to help me through my troubling times. When I graduated, America was just getting over the recession. But in the workplace, nobody was hiring for a while, especially in IT. So after turning in so many resumes and filling out tons of applications, I started to notice that this wasn't just a regular hiring issue, it was a diversity and inclusion issue. Because when the companies did start hiring I barely received a callback and not only myself was going through this but a lot of minority students that I graduated with also was going through this. Some students did land jobs but went through internal issues such as staying as a temporary employee and not getting hired on, pay raise issues, and other races being hired on but they stayed in the same place. I became fed up with these background issues and started my own IT company called Geek Dreams. But while doing this and noticing the diversity issues in the IT field, I also noticed and found out that the creative industry also has diversity and inclusion issues.
The reason why I have an interest in the creative industry is that I started a graphic design and web design company called Def Perception back in 2009. So with me being knowledgeable in both fields and noticing diversity and inclusion issues in both industries. I wanted to start something that can focus on these issues in both industries and help minorities and women of color as much as possible by connecting them to companies that need their talent and skillset, so this is why I started the Visionary League. With being a minority owner things can be challenging with receiving funding and possible investors at times. But myself and the organization must continue to stay positive and keep pushing to get where we want to be, because we have a lot of ideas and things that we would love to accomplish in the near future!