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The Northwest Arkansas region will continue to see a steady increase in ethnic and racial diversity over the next five years.

The Northwest Arkansas region will continue to see a steady increase in ethnic and racial diversity over the next five years. “Diversity: A Look at How Northwest Arkansas’ Population is Changing,” is a Northwest Arkansas Council report that highlights these changes. With economic importance in mind, the Council sees it necessary to maximize inclusion efforts that benefit the entire region.

Diversity was the central theme at the Northwest Arkansas Council winter meeting on January 16. Those who attended heard an insightful panel discussion, and the participants included Ben Hasan, senior vice president and chief culture, diversity and inclusion officer at Walmart; Mark Oleksuik, executive vice president and chief human resources officer at Tyson Foods; and Yvette Murphy-Erby, vice provost for diversity and inclusion at the University of Arkansas. Kyle Kellams of KUAF moderated the discussion.

Northwest Arkansas’ population looks nothing like it did in 1990.

Northwest Arkansas is changing by the day. We must take proactive steps to harness the talents and energy of everyone who chooses to make this region home to ensure that it remains one of the nation’s best places to live and work.

Nelson PeacockPresident & CEO of the Northwest Arkansas Council

The Northwest Arkansas Council identified a select group of high-performing peer regions, as highlighted in the chart below, and used them as benchmarks in its creation of the Greater Northwest Arkansas Development Strategy.