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Celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month at Independence Blue Cross

Independence Blue Cross (IBX) concluded its celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month with a fireside chat featuring Jim Hom, an established financial executive with global experience and proud first-generation Asian American. Hom is also an IBX board member serving on the Audit and Risk, Finance, and Strategic Initiatives committees. Mike Sullivan, EVP and president of Diversified Markets, led the discussion.

The session was sponsored by imPACT, an Associate Resource Group (ARG) focused on promoting visibility and awareness of Asian American, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders within IBX and the communities we serve. May’s theme, presented by imPACT, focused on “Cultivating Excellence and Building Success Across Cultures.” ARGs reinforce our commitment to embracing diversity and building a culture of inclusion. As Hom put it, “IBX is on the forefront of driving change in DEI.”   

Since 2003, Hom has led businesses as a CFO and EVP in the United States and abroad in over 70 countries. During the event, he discussed his career journey, overcoming cultural barriers, working with diverse teams, and recognizing the power of remaining present. Hom also offered advice to young professionals who are starting their careers. Regarding the future of the AAPI community in the workforce, he said, “I think we’re moving from an awareness phase to an acceptance phase.”   

“imPACT’s Fireside Chat with Jim Hom explored the intersection of cultural identity and professional success. His emphasis on cultural intelligence, geocentric leadership, the significance of empathy, and the art of storytelling provided invaluable guidance for young professionals, inspiring the future of the AAPI community,” said Christine Moy, lead auditor. 

The event was one of several IBX associates enjoyed during AAPI Heritage Month. Other events included:  

  • AAPI Heritage Month open house: imPACT’s core team members shared the group’s plans for 2024, its mission and goals, as well as opportunities to be part of the ARG.  
  • Live cooking demo: Aramark’s Chef Marie showed attendees how to cook authentic egg rolls and a refreshing tropical pacific cooler.  
  • Professional Development session: imPACT Core Team member Sarah Villamayor held a session on “Building Powerful Partnerships.” The session covered active listening, building trust, managing up and giving/receiving feedback. 

Throughout the month, imPACT worked to raise money for community partner Penn Asian Senior Services. A total of $1,274 was raised for the organization. Members of imPACT also attended the Asian American Chamber of Commerce gala, a signature event honoring AAPI business achievement and individual accomplishment while preserving its event traditions that celebrate Asian-Pacific culture. 

Xiaoying Wu, associate sales executive – Medicare, said, “Being part of imPACT gave me the opportunity to connect with others, learn, and grow professionally while working on our goals. Nevertheless, by being part of the core team, I am more committed to become involved and engaged in imPACT’s team efforts and the community.”