It looks like the Dallas Mavericks are trying to win again after several women called fouls off the court. The NBA team hired new Interim CEO Cynthia Marshall, the first Black woman to be in the position in the 300-team league, on Monday.
The powerful move comes as a nasty sexual misconduct scandal involving former team president Terdema Ussery has rocked the franchise and shed more light on the #MeToo movement. But rest assured: Marshall, who was previously AT&T’s vice president of human resources and chief diversity officer, has a plan.
“The process failed somewhere,” Marshall, who retired from AT&T last May with more than 30 years of telecommunications experience, said during a press conference with Mavericks owner Mark Cuban on Monday. “I don’t know why it failed. And so that’s what we have to dig out. So I will be meeting one-on-one every single employee of the organization. I’m calling it my own ‘March Madness.’”
Marshall’s hiring proves that when the ish hits the fan, it’s a good look to call in a Black woman to save the day. Yes, she will put on her cape!
The Mavs have surely picked a strong CEO in Marshall, who was recently cited by Black Enterprise as one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Corporate America. Marshall has a lot of work to do with the Mavs, first addressing the strong talk of a hostile culture for women within the organization, The Associated Press reported.
Ussery, who was the team president for 18 years, was at the center of conversations about a “pattern of misogyny and predatory sexual misconduct,” a shocking and scathing Sports Illustrated report said last week. Several serious allegations, including that Ussery told a woman that she would be “gang-banged” and put his hands on another woman’s thigh without consent, were made. Ussery was even investigated for the allegations in 1998 but somehow stayed on with the team until recently.
The team plans to start a counseling and support services hotline for past and current employees, and Cuban has said he is mandating sensitivity training for all employees including himself. It seems only time will really tell if the Mavericks’ culture and treatment of women will really improve for the better. Marshall sounds as if she is ready to lead the fight for all women, right?