The Reverend Jesse Jackson Sr., founder of The Rainbow PUSH Coalition, together with the Citizenship Education Fund,presented Jeffrey Webster with an Emerging Leader Award at the 17th Annual Global Automotive Summit. Webster currently serves as the Director of Diversity and Inclusion for Nissan North America which includes Canada and Mexico.
The award ceremony took place on Friday, September 30, 2016 at the MGM Grand Detroit Event Center. Webster was one of three recipients recognized as Emerging Leaders this year. “Receiving this award is most definitely an honor. I am so grateful to be able to work for a company that allows me to make the impact that make awards like this possible,” said Webster. “I look forward to providing others with the same types of opportunities that I was given.”
The Emerging Leader Award is presented to a next generation professional of merit, accomplishment and service who is making a significant impact in the automotive industry. Honorees are making groundbreaking contributions and serve as beacons of light. They are strong advocates for equality and inclusion with a focus on leadership.
“We are honored to recognize the emerging leaders in the automotive industry who fight to help us reach our goal in corporate America. We are not fighting for diversity, we are fighting for equality,” said Reverend Jackson.
Webster’s primary objectives as Director of Diversity and Inclusion are to continue to grow Nissan’s ethnically diverse customer base and ensure that the company includes females and minorities in opportunities for executive positions. “At Nissan, our Diversity and Inclusion practices are employed across our company at large as well as in the community. We work hard internally to make sure that our employees are more than just our payroll but strive to be valuable contributors to our organization,” said Webster. “The same is true for our customers and our community. We aim to incorporate our ethnically diverse customer base into the overall scope of what our company is doing and not just recognized as a consumer.”
Thirty-eight percent of Nissan’s U.S. customers are ethnically diverse, the highest among major automakers in the U.S. Webster joined Nissan in 1985 as a production technician at the company’s vehicle assembly plant in Smyrna, Tenn. In 1989, he transitioned to the Human Resources team as an employee relations representative. He was later promoted to employee relations section manager and served in that role in several different production areas. In May 2001, Webster transferred to the Canton plant to serve as department manager for employee relations, training, organizational development and communications.