GREATER DES MOINES, IA (Feb. 25, 2021) — Capital Crossroads has launched an effort focused on initiatives and action items to increase racial equity across the region. Currently called the “DSM USA 4 Equity Task Force,” the group will work together to elevate Central Iowa’s commitment to racial equity by creating and implementing sustainable cross-sector action that drives measurable shifts in policy, systems and practice.

The group’s objective is to move the region toward greater equity with an active master plan that includes measurable outcomes, policy recommendations and action steps for all businesses, councils, organizations and jurisdictions. This collective effort builds on the CEO Commitment to Racial Equity in DSM, One Economy Blueprint for Action, 4 Equity Tool, 21-Day Equity Challenge and more.
“As an immigrant from Cuba, I have always felt a calling to focus on work of this nature,” says Marta Codina, Region Bank President with Wells Fargo and tri-chair. “Leading our community to consider what shifts in policy and practice need to happen and then implementing them will lead to a more inclusive Central Iowa.”

“The time for this work is past due,” says Renee Hardman, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa, West Des Moines City Council member and tri-chair of the effort. “Within our community, we can do better. This diverse group of leaders is coming together to strategize on how to make a meaningful change when it comes to racial equity in our region.”

“Our region is made up of people from all different backgrounds, and supporting our diverse communities as they become more integrated in decision-making will make Greater Des Moines a more vibrant place,” said Tanner Krause, CEO of Kum & Go and tri-chair. “This group will work to support a Greater Des Moines that is more connected and welcoming to all.”

Individuals informing the effort include:
• Marta Codina, Wells Fargo & Co. – Tri-chair
• Renee Hardman, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Iowa and West Des Moines City Council member – Tri-chair
• Tanner Krause, Kum & Go – Tri-chair
• Barwaqo Aden, NISAA African Family Services
• Shaimaa Aly, Wells Fargo & Co. and representative of Capital Crossroads Social Capital
• Lindsay Cannaday, United Way of Central Iowa
• Pernell Cezar, BLK & BOLD
• Marvin DeJear, Greater Des Moines Partnership
• Jacquie Easley McGhee, MercyOne Des Moines Medical Center
• Joe Henry, Iowa Realty and League of United Latin American Citizens of Iowa (LULAC)
• Christine Her, ArtForce Iowa
• John Hollinrake, U.S. Senate
• Levon Hooks, Kum & Go
• Enrique Idehen, Vector Marketing
• Buffy Jamison, Iowa Queer Communities of Color Coalition and Central Iowa Center for Independent Living
• Justyn Lewis, SELMA
• Miriam Lewis, Principal Financial Group
• Victoria Lundgren-Brown, NAACP and DART
• Dawn Martinez Oropeza, Al Exito
• Mike McCoy, NCMIC Group, Inc.
• Julian Neely, Zeta Kappa Lambda chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc.
• Manisha Paudel, City of Des Moines
• Chief Darius Potts, Ankeny Police Department
• Scott Raecker, Drake University / The Robert D. and Billie Ray Center
• Jade Song, representative of the Greater Des Moines Partnership’s Inclusion Council and the Iowa Asian Alliance

More information will be announced in the coming weeks as the group continues to meet. If you are interested in engaging in this work, please email

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About Capital Crossroads

Capital Crossroads is a bold but achievable vision pushing Central Iowans to dream big, not settle for good enough, think long term and work together. Capital Crossroads brings together community volunteers to meet the challenges of the future while building on our past successes. It is in partnership with the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines, the Des Moines Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, Catch Des Moines, the Greater Des Moines Partnership, Polk County, Prairie Meadows and the United Way of Central Iowa. To learn more, visit