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Sodexo Ranks Second on the 2009 DiversityInc Top Ten Companies for Latinos List

Company's success in employee recruitment and retention, organizational relationships cited

GAITHERSBURG, Md., April 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Sodexo, a leading integrated food and facilities management services company, was named second on the 2009 DiversityInc Top Ten Companies for Latinos list, based on measurements of CEO commitment, human capital, supplier diversity and corporate/organizational communications from more than 400 applicants.

Ricardo Diaz, a director of business development for Sodexo's Education Division and chair of the Sodexo Organization of Latinos (SOL) employee network group, was pleased and not surprised to learn that Sodexo had achieved this distinction.

"Sodexo is a company of opportunity for Latinos and all employees," said Diaz. "We open all positions for all to participate and have the mechanisms in place to ensure that managers are recruiting and hiring from diverse pools of candidates."

Diaz partially attributes Sodexo's rise in the rankings - from ninth on the 2008 DiversityInc list for employers of Latinos to second in 2009 - to the company's "increased efforts to actively grow our external relationships with Latino organizations," said Diaz. "Our partnerships improve recruitment of Latino job candidates and interns."

DiversityInc cited Sodexo's relationships with the National Council of La Raza, the Hispanic College Fund and the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities as examples of productive partnerships. An added factor contributing to Sodexo's high placement in the rankings is the company's work force of 17.8 percent Latinos.

An executive sponsor of SOL, Sodexo Senior Vice President and Chief Administrative Office Michael Montelongo, credited much of Sodexo's diversity success to its "diversity infrastructure."

"Sodexo's diversity programs are hard-wired into the organization's culture and structure," explained Montelongo. "At Sodexo, diversity and inclusion translates into action, including training, mentoring, active support, and accountability." Both Diaz and Montelongo cited the direct involvement of Sodexo CEO George Chavel and all senior executives in the company's seven employee network groups, which provide resources and opportunities to African Americans, Pan Asians, gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender employees, women, people with disabilities, and intergenerational employees, in addition to Latinos.

Altogether 401 companies, an increase of 14 percent from last year's 352 contenders, competed for the DiversityInc honors. To determine the Top Ten Companies for Latinos, DiversityInc examined several ratios showing how companies are increasing the presence and role of Latino employees, including their percentage of the work force versus new hires, management versus promotions in management, and in different levels of management versus the top 10 percent highest-paid employees. It also looked at the strength and purpose of the company's employee-resource groups for Latinos, its mentoring program, its philanthropic and scholarship efforts in the Latino community, and its relationships with minority business enterprises as suppliers.

Factors in Sodexo's success were its diversity training and employee-engagement metrics, its trendsetting mentoring programs, its full complement of progressive work/life programs, and its external communications and partnerships that brand it as a diversity leader.

About DiversityInc

Launched in 1997, DiversityInc is the leading business publication connecting diversity and the bottom line, with 1 million unique monthly visitors. includes the largest diversity job board in the nation. DiversityInc also produces events and conducts benchmarking, custom research and consulting.

Sodexo, Inc.

Sodexo, Inc. ( is a leading integrated facilities management services company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, with $7.7 billion (USD) in annual revenue and 120,000 employees. Sodexo serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, health care, long term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government, and remote sites. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., is a member of Sodexo Group, and funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (, an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $11 million in grants to fight hunger in America.

SOURCE Sodexo, Inc.
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