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Shawn Abner-Purnell Becomes VP of Diversity/Inclusion and Engagement; Honored in ROI-NJ’s List of Influential People of Color Along with Board Member

FOLSOM, NJ, Oct. 07, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) --

Media Contact: Dominick DiRocco


Investor Contact: Dan Fidell
(609) 561-9000 ext. 7027


Shawn Abner-Purnell Becomes VP of Diversity/Inclusion and Engagement; Honored in ROI-NJ’s List of Influential People of Color Along with Board Member

FOLSOM, NJ, October 7, 2021 – SJI (NYSE: SJI) remains committed to creating a culture of inclusion where differences are appreciated and respected. Consistent with this commitment, SJI is excited to see ROI-NJ recognize the company’s new Vice President of Diversity/Inclusion (D&I) and Engagement, Shawn Abner-Purnell, in its ROI Influencers: People of Color 2021 – Difference Makers List.

ROI-NJ’s list of influential people of color aims to highlight diverse leaders throughout the state whose talents and unique insights bring value to their respective organizations. ROI-NJ recognized Abner-Purnell for her ability to “create a culture of inclusion for all – one where every employee can feel comfortable bringing their best selves to work each day” through career development programs, D&I efforts and employee engagement. In addition to Abner-Purnell’s recognition, ROI-NJ recognized Sunita Holzer, who has served on SJI’s Board of Directors since 2011, for her work at Verisk Analytics, SJI and Rutgers’ School of Management and Labor Relations.

Abner-Purnell’s recognition falls on the heels of her appointment to Vice President of D&I and Engagement in July 2021. In this role, she is responsible for building strategies that create a culture of inclusion, belonging and engagement for SJI’s workforce. She also guides best practices on critical external matters related to diversity and inclusion. Prior to her promotion, Abner-Purnell served as SJI’s Director of Organizational Development, Diversity and Inclusion since 2018.

“Both Shawn and Sunita have shown themselves to be proven leaders time and again with the determination and passion necessary to maintain a diverse workforce where employees are accountable, empowered and included,” said Michael Renna, SJI President and CEO. “I am confident that Shawn’s leadership in Diversity, Inclusion and Engagement and Sunita’s steady leadership on our board will lead to continued success and more opportunities to better serve our employees, key stakeholders and communities.”

Under Abner-Purnell’s leadership, in 2020 SJI launched the Diversity Council, which oversees and champions D&I efforts across the company. She also instituted employee listening sessions to increase awareness and gather ideas for how to continue strengthening SJI’s culture of inclusion and has overseen the implementation of a D&I communications strategy, both internally and externally. Her ongoing leadership in this area of strategic importance has positioned SJI well to retain top talent in an increasingly diverse workforce, build a framework for a robust D&I Strategy and improve the company’s overall performance.

“SJI’s 1,100 employees work together to deliver safe, reliable, affordable clean energy to over 700,000 customers who are diverse in experience, background and thought. I look forward to ensuring that SJI reflects the diversity of the communities it serves through supplier diversity, talent acquisition and internal programming while solidifying SJI’s place as a trusted community partner and social advocate,” said Abner-Purnell.

For more information about SJI and its subsidiaries, please visit sjindustries.com.

About SJI

SJI (NYSE: SJI), an energy services holding company based in Folsom, NJ, delivers energy services to its customers through three primary subsidiaries. SJI Utilities, SJI’s regulated natural gas utility business, delivers safe, reliable, affordable natural gas to approximately 700,000 South Jersey Gas and Elizabethtown Gas customers in New Jersey. SJI’s non-utility businesses within South Jersey Energy Solutions promote efficiency, clean technology and renewable energy by providing customized wholesale commodity marketing and fuel management services; and developing, owning and operating on-site energy production facilities. SJI Midstream houses the company’s interest in the PennEast Pipeline Project. For more information about SJI and its subsidiaries, please visit sjindustries.com