To provide insights from our own community, we’re featuring a series of Black History Month employee profiles throughout February. Today, get to know Jason McDonald from our Media Liability team. We invite you to learn how Black history has influenced Jason’s life through his insights below.

Tell us about a moment in black history that influenced or shaped your career?
Barack Obama being elected president for his first term which started in 2009.  It was an impactful transcendence for the nation, but it was especially inspirational to a younger me to see a minority attain that position and that platform, as it cemented the notion that there were “no ceilings” and that my own merits would help me progress as far as I wanted to go.

Favorite Quote or Mantra?
“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.” — Maya Angelou

It reasserts a core belief of mine that the individual must want to be part of the change or solution, and we are always in control of how we respond to any issue. 

Why do you think celebrating Black History Month is important?
Advocacy and awareness of different perspectives, histories, and cultures is paramount. We find ourselves in a time where it’s better understood that general narrative doesn’t apply to everyone, and collectively we must continue to educate ourselves and those around us.  

Who inspires you?
I am inspired by countless minority leaders, entrepreneurs, activists, politicians. To be the “first” or the “only” minority in a respective field, industry, or vertical requires courage given the inherent scrutiny associated with the recognition, as these individuals are often thrust into the role of a representative or ambassador. 

If you could have a conversation with a civil rights activist, who would it be and why?
Nelson Mandela, because he could provide a wealth of knowledge and perspective on many topics including civil rights, prison experience, and international politics.  He cared enough about making a difference to spend a good chunk of his existence imprisoned, and still dedicated decades of his life to making impactful change.