Overall, Amazon boasts a diverse workforce, but the company’s leadership is predominately white and male. Two of Amazon’s top managers for warehouses and transportation are leaving the company.
According to persons familiar with the situation, Alicia Boler-Davis, senior vice president of global customer fulfilment and a member of the executive team, and David Bozeman, vice president of Amazon Transportation Services, are leaving the organisation. Both were among the few notable Black leaders in the company. Although Amazon has improved its executive ranks’ diversity in recent years, as of the end of 2021, only 5.5% of its top leaders were Black, per company data. Boler-Davis resigned to pursue new opportunities, and Bozeman has taken a new role outside Amazon that will be announced shortly, an Amazon spokesperson confirmed.
Longtime Amazon employee Doug Herrington will take over as the new CEO of Worldwide Amazon Stores, according to an announcement made by Andy Jassy, the CEO of Amazon, on Tuesday. Jassy added that the operations team will now report to John Felton, adding that Amazon was also changing the name of the consumer division to Amazon Stores.
Dave Clark, who shocked the business world by quitting in early June, was succeeded by Herrington. Dave Clark had struggled, opening too many new warehouses and recruiting too many people, among other issues, according to an earlier Insider article.
According to Insider, Amazon lost at least 50 vice president-level or higher employees in 2021.
Felton said in the email on Tuesday that he had plans to create a single Amazon Transportation team after the news of Herrington’s new position.
Boler-Davis, who left General Motors in 2019 to work for Amazon, was contending for Felton’s position. Felton’s email stated that she had “been a remarkable and impactful leader through an extraordinary time.” She is also the sole Black member of Amazon’s senior leadership team, or “S-team.” She was the first Black person and fourth female to join the group, which functioned as former CEO Jeff Bezos’ key advisors.
The business unit in Bozeman was in charge of managing vehicles and Flex delivery personnel. Boler-Davis’ departure means there are no longer any Black executives on the S-team.
Felton’s email stated, “Dave has worked with Amazon for more than five years and helped significantly build Amazon Transportation, particularly during Covid.” He has played a key role in creating and expanding our middle mile network and positioning us for success.
An Amazon representative cited an email from Jassy to leadership that GeekWire was able to obtain. In it, he wrote, “Even though we’ve made great strides in hiring Level 8 and Level 10 black leaders over the past two years, the fact that we’re losing two of our most senior black leaders is not lost on any of us. There is still a tonne of work to be done.”
Felton’s email continued by stating that he is “forming teams around Safety, Fulfillment Centers, Transportation, Emerging Countries, Robotics, and Teams” in order to “unite teams.”
Compared to their white counterparts, Amazon’s black employees received fewer promotions and worse evaluations. A different study from June 2021 claimed that Black employees were the targets of racial discrimination by the business’s human resources and hiring divisions.
By 2025, Microsoft vowed to have double the amount of Black and African American managers and senior workers. The business claimed to be almost 40% of the way there last year.