Case 35: Kodak Reverse Discrimination
Photo and Imaging Giant Aggressively Excludes Non-Minorities

Racial Preferences = Racial Discrimination
It's a Quota Moment! (1) Kodaquota Introduction and Background

Web Posted July 3, 2003
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NEWS UPDATE - On Jan. 19, 2012 Kodak filed for bankruptcy. The once mighty photo giant -- which pioneered high quality film and inexpensive cameras for the masses -- succumbed to competition from digitial media and was slow to adapt to the changing, digital market. One has to wonder if Kodak would have fared better if it had paid more attention to running its business, and to hiring the best qualified employees without regard to their race, gender or sexual orientation. -- Editor.

QuotaMatic Snapshot

[Adversity.Net Report July 3, 2003] -- It is much more than just a "quota moment" at the photo and imaging giant.  Is is a complete and repressive "quota culture". 

          Kodak's aggressive, forced-diversity policies and procedures actively exclude non-minority employees, suppliers and subcontractors.

Acquisitions:  Like most large companies, Kodak frequently purchases smaller companies.  Adversity.Net has examined some of these purchases and has observed that Kodak's first order of business is to purge the acquired company of most of its non-minority employees, especially non-minority males over 40 years old.

Kodak Headquarters are in Rochester, NY.
Kodak's headquarters are located in Rochester, NY which is in Monroe County.  Black Rochester residents adore Kodak.

Employee Manuals:  Kodak's employee manuals and procedures could have been a chapter from George Orwell's 1984

          Kodak's Orwellian thought police monitor employees' thoughts and attitudes regarding diversity and Kodak punishes, demotes, fires and/or re-educates those employees with contrary views. 

          And just as in Orwell's futuristic book, Kodak's "new speak" on all matters diverse is mind-bogglingly contradictory and illogical. 

          Co-workers at Kodak are encouraged to act as thought police (or spies) when it comes to politically correct attitudes and behavior regarding its diversity policies.

Kodak dominates Rochester's skyline and politics.
Kodak's downtown Rochester, NY offices.
          The company's employee manuals spell out in great detail (a) what kinds of contrary views constitute a crime against diversity, and (b) the specific steps your fellow employees should follow in ratting you out.

          Its all true, and its all on the public record. 

          You just won't hear about it from any Kodak employee who wishes to retain their job.

Downsizing Means Quota-Sizing:  During the past four years (1998 - 2002) Kodak has eliminated as many as 20,000 jobs but somehow has managed to maintain or increase the representation of minorities and women. 

For example, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reported:

"One in four U.S. workers at Xerox Corp., Bausch & Lomb Inc. and Eastman Kodak Co. was a racial minority in 2001, up from one in five a decade ago. That was no easy feat -- U.S. employment for those three companies fell by one-third during the period, but their minority representation increased." [See Note 1]

          Kodak publicly boasts about this accomplishment in their press releases and annual reports.  Such a feat could only have been accomplished by aggressively eliminating more senior non-minority employees, particularly males, while selectively retaining preferred minorities with far less seniority and job experience.

Source: Kodak 2002 Annual Report

% Women

% POC (People of Color)
Including Women of Color

Year Ending:

2002

2001

2000

2002

2001

2000

Total U.S. Employees:

36%

37%

37%

21%

21%

21%

Board of Directors:

30%

36%

33%

30%

21%

8%

Senior Managers, Directors, Managers and Supervisors:

33%

32%

30%

14%

13%

12%

Exempt Individual Contributors:

28%

29%

29%

12%

11%

11%

Nonexempt Contributors:

40%

40%

41%

25%

25%

25%

          Note particularly the line titled "Board of Directors" in the table above.  The proportion of People of Color (Kodak's term) on Kodak's Board increased from 8% in 2000 to 30% in 2002.  

          Stated another way, the proportion of non-minorities on Kodak's Board declined from 92% in 2000 to 70% in 2002.  That represents a purge of 23.9% of the non-minorities from Kodak's Board over the course of three years. [See Note 2]

Minority Non-Lawsuit:  Kodak's purge of non-minority board members and Kodak's phenomenal bragging about what a nice place Kodak is for people of color can be traced to the mere threat of a discrimination lawsuit by women and people of color in 1999.  [See part 2 of our Kodak story: $13 Million Non-Settlement.]

Racism through a QuotaMatic lens

          In May of 1999 Kodak announced that it had settled this non-lawsuit for $13 million and agreed at that time to implement many changes, including, of course, creation of the inevitable Diversity Panel, as well as increasing minority representation on their Board of Directors.   Other changes included the addition of quota bonuses (see immediately below).


Executive Bonuses for Racial Quota Achievements

"Accountability is a key component of Kodak's commitment to diversity and inclusion. Executives are held accountable for their results through metrics [numbers or quotas] tied to a portion of compensation. This measures progress in workforce diversity and culture transformation."
-- Kodak 2002 Annual Report

Quota Bonuses:  Today Kodak ties executive compensation and bonuses to the number of minority employees their executives recruit and promote.  In order to avoid using the term quotas Kodak measures execs' quota achievements through what they call metrics.
CEO Diversity Awards

"The Kodak CEO Diversity Award annually recognizes a Kodak middle -- or senior -- level manager who role-models exemplary leadership and embraces the mindset and behaviors that lead to a diverse and inclusive work group. ... Candidates are judged on their ability to leverage diversity and inclusion to achieve business objectives and maximize the potential of individuals and the organization."
-- Kodak 2002 Annual Report


Diversity Panel:  The photo giant also has a blue ribbon Diversity Panel which monitors Kodak's racial quotas and forced-diversity accomplishments.  The chair of Kodak's Diversity Panel is none other than Eric Holder, the black, Democrat, former Deputy U.S. Attorney General.  (Holder was appointed to his former job as Deputy U.S. Attorney General by none other than the first "black" president of the U.S., Bill Clinton.  More on Kodak's connection to Clinton later.)

          Also serving on Kodak's Diversity Panel is the Rev. Norvel Goff, pastor of the Baber African Methodist Episcopal Church and president of the Greater Rochester chapter of the NAACP.  In 1999 the Rev. Goff played a key role in motivating Kodak to pay out $13 million to 2,000 of its minority and female employees.  [See part 2 of our Kodak story: $13 Million Non-Settlement.]


Kodak Support for Quotas and Preferences:   Eastman Kodak strongly supported the University of Michigan's racist student admission policies which granted 20 bonus points (out of a possible total of 120 points) for any student applicant who was the "right, non-white, non-Asian" color. 

          In a fractured and weak decision, on June 23, 2003 the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Michigan and, by extension, other colleges and universities, can continue to discriminate against student applicants based on their skin color.  [See especially University of Michigan Quotas (opens a new window in your browser).]

          It remains to be seen whether Kodak will supply funds to oppose the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative, a ballot referendum for the 2004 elections which will allow Michigan voters to essentially overturn the Supreme Court ruling within their own state. [See also Michigan Civil Rights Initiative.   Opens  new window in your browser.]


Forced Diversity is NOT Profitable:  Neither Kodak nor any of the other large, corporate cheerleaders supporting this special brand of racial discrimination have been able to show a positive, bottom-line impact of hiring and promoting by racial quota.

          In fact, the only hard evidence of the "profitability of racial quotas" is decidedly negative. The following excerpt from Chronwatch.Com (June 2002) documents the stock performance of Forcibly Diverse corporations such as Eastman Kodak.

Quoted from Chronwatch.Com June 2002:

          The new "diversity" regime, never the impolite "affirmative action" policy, was supposed to unleash creativity, new markets, an infusion of new ideas, and of course, profits. All this of course was encouraged by a "diversity" friendly press, which infected by its own politically correct shenanagins in the newsroom as documented by William McGowan in Coloring the News, saw this as a win-win and was an incessant cheerleader.

          Tell that to the shareholders of Xerox, Ford, and Eastman Kodak. Take Xerox, which tied a portion of managers' bonuses to how well they promoted diversity efforts at the company, traded in 1999 at about $63 a share. It now trades about $8, or in percentage terms, a loss of 73 percent. If you were to put that in dollars, well, you would have lost more $50,000 over the past two years.

          Take Eastman Kodak, which this May [2002] was named as one of the top companies for minorities by DiversityInc., plunged from a 1998 high of $78 a share to a low last November of $24, a loss of 69 percent. Wall Street analysts, who until very recently were paid to be bullish on stocks, have rated a Kodak a "hold" or a "sell," the former a Street euphemism for run screaming to the exits.

          Or Ford, the second largest automaker which recently settled hundred of suits by white male managers saying they were discriminated against by a evaluation system cooked up by disgraced CEO Jacques Nasser to eliminate white males over 40 and bring in more minorities, which has seen its shares from $37 a share to $16, a loss of more than 56 percent.

          Or JP Morgan, which bragged recently that half of its new hires were minority or female, whose stock has fallen from $67 to $33 in the past two years.

[See Note 3]


Summary:

Kodak is THE economic force in Rochester, NY. Kodak dominates all Rochester, NY politics and economics.           Few American corporations exercise the degree of control over their employees' behavior and their very thoughts than the Eastman Kodak Company. [See Kodak story, part 4: Kodak's Intolerance.]

          Few American corporations are as ruthless as Eastman Kodak in purging non-minorities -- especially non-minority males -- from their ranks.

          Most other American corporations, however, do have a Supplier Diversity Program very much like Kodak's, which excludes non-minority-owned suppliers and contractors from doing business with Kodak. [See Kodak story, part 5:  Kodak Supplier Diversity Program.]

          And most American corporations also have blue ribbon Diversity Panels like Kodak's which are universally headed by liberal, pro-quota refugees from the first two Clinton administrations.  Where possible the chairpersons of these Diversity Panels are black,  Hispanic or Native American.  If no blacks, Hispanics or Native Americans are available for the job then pro-quota companies such as Kodak will at least appoint a non-minority female to head their Diversity Panel.  Whatever the specific facts and circumstances, the chairpersons of these Diversity Panels are always liberal, pro-quota diversiphiles.  However, there is no diversity of viewpoints or politics on these panels.


Notes, References and Links:

Note 1-- Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, 1/1/303.  Last known link to item:
http://www.democratandchronicle.com/
news/extra/discrimination/0113story2_news.shtml
[Return]
Note 2 -- Eastman Kodak 2002 Annual Report & 2003 Proxy Statement.  Last known link:
http://wwwfi.kodak.com/US/en/corp/annualReport02/
corpInfo/diversity/diversity1.shtml
[Return]
Note 3 -- Chronwatch.com, June 2002. Last known link:
http://www.chronwatch.com/featured/2002-06-10BS.asp
[Return]

Send Us Your Comments:

          If you have specific, additional information about Kodak's racial preferences programs, please send your confidential comments to editor@adversity.net


END Kodak Case 35: (1) Introduction and Background

Make another KodaQuota Selection:

Kodak Case 35:
(1) Introduction and Background
(this page)
Kodak Case 35:
(2) $13 Million Settlement
Kodak Case 35:
(3) Funding and Involvement with Minority Causes
Kodak Case 35:
(4) Intolerance of Diversity of Opinion
Kodak Case 35:
(5) Supplier Diversity Program
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*  We use the term reverse discrimination reluctantly and only because it is so widely understood.  In our opinion there really is only one kind of discrimination.