Hershey Mentors Women and Girls as Future CEOs

March is Women’s History Month, and Hershey is celebrating with a Future CEO program.

March 01, 2023

HERSHEY, Pa.—In celebration of Women's History Month, Hershey will convene young women around the world in the first-of-its-kind Future CEO program, in partnership with nonprofit partners Girl Up and Girls on the Run. In addition to this program, its flagship Hershey's brand will offer ways to celebrate and elevate women and girls around the world with the return of meaningful brand activations, the company announced.

"Investing in the right programs, initiatives and strategies with inclusivity, equity and diversity are at the center of our business to make a difference and support our long-term business growth,” said Michele Buck, CEO of The Hershey Company. “Women’s History Month marks a deliberate moment in time to harness our year-round commitment to amplifying the powerful voices of women and girls around the world to carve a path for everyone to succeed.”

Hershey is one of only 53 companies in the Fortune 500 with a woman CEO. In alignment with the company’s enterprise diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) framework, Hershey is well on its way to meeting its ambitious goals of 50% gender representation across its workforce and 42% of its leadership by 2025.

To impact the next generation and fully use the power of its platform, Hershey has created the Future CEO Program, working over the past six months with Girl Up and Girls on the Run to build a virtual program designed to drive mentorship for young women and reverse mentorship for Hershey executives. The event will take place on March 7 and will unite 10 young women around the world to learn directly from Michele Buck and other Hershey leaders.

The goal of the program is to equip young women with a better understanding of their leadership skills and strengths, and how they are uniquely positioned to make a difference.

The young women will participate in group discussions and activities across an array of topics, including setting actionable goals, navigating imposter syndrome and trusting one’s intuition.

Hershey has also dedicated time to learn from these young women to understand what the next generation of the workforce needs to succeed and to inform the company’s workplace strategy.

In addition, Hershey’s and Girls on the Run curated more than 200+ powerful adjectives by asking Girls on the Run coaches and participants to describe an impactful women or girl in their lives. These adjectives are featured on the front of the 2023 Hershey’s SHE bar.

In partnership with Girl Up, Hershey will expand its award-winning #HerSHE campaign, which originated in Brazil in 2020. In Brazil, Mexico, Philippines, India and Canada, Hershey’s will transform the iconic Hershey's Milk Chocolate Bar wrapper into a celebration of woman icons, shining a light on their accomplishments and the impact they've made—all with the goal of making invisible women visible.

Earlier this year Hershey was recognized as a JUST company. In November, it announced additional steps to reduce its environmental impact.