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Walton College

The Sam M. Walton College of Business

Season 4, Episode 3: Kevin Bales - Modern Slavery, Environmental Destruction, and Creating Ethical Supply Chains

September 16, 2021  |  By Cindy Moehring

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Cindy Moehring’s guest is Kevin Bales, author, professor at the University of Nottingham, UK, and leading expert on contemporary slavery. They discuss how the pandemic has affected victims of forced labor, the surprising connection between slavery and ecological devastation, and what companies can do to address both of these issues.  


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Episode Transcript:


0:00:15.2 Cindy Moehring: Hello, everybody, and welcome back to another episode of the BIS, the Business Integrity School, and today we have with us a very special guest, Kevin Bales. Kevin, how are you today?

0:00:24.4 Kevin Bales: I'm great, thanks.

0:00:27.9 Cindy Moehring: Good. Well, before we dive into the conversation of all things ESG, which is the topic of this season of the BIS, let me tell you just a little bit about Kevin and also have some fun facts that we'll talk about here in a minute. Kevin is actually a professor of contemporary slavery and the research director of the Rights Lab at the University of Nottingham in the UK. In early 2016, as well, while he was working at the Wilberforce Institute for the Study of Slavery and Emancipation, an organisation known as WISE, they won the Queen's anniversary Prize, which is often referred to as a knighthood for research institutes. Kevin has done a number of amazing things, we don't even have time to list all of them here, but just a few. He was a co-founder of Free the Slaves in Washington DC. The important thing there is to know it's a US sister organisation of the Anti-slavery International, which is the world's oldest human rights group that was founded in 1787.

0:01:29.9 Cindy Moehring: Kevin also serves on an expert working group for Walk Free Foundation's Global Slavery Index, and Bill Gates has described the Global Slavery Index as an important tool to let governments, non-government organisations, NGOs and businesses take stock and to take action against this terrible, terrible problem. Even today, Kevin serves as a consultant to the United Nations and to several different governments. And most relevant for this podcast, in 2016, he published a really interesting book called Blood and Earth: Modern Slavery, Ecocide, and the Secret to Saving the World. The breakthrough work that identified modern slavery as a contributor to global climate change. Voila! The connection all the way up from not just social, but also the environmental side of ESG. So Kevin, amazing, amazing bio. We're just so fortunate to have you here today. But I have to say one thing, just for the audience to know, Kevin actually is a native of an area that's very close to where I am right now in Bentonville, Arkansas, right up the road from the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Kevin is... Comes from Ponca City, Oklahoma, yet now he lives on the island of Guernsey, which is just off the UK. So real briefly, Kevin, tell us how you got from Ponca City all the way over to Guernsey.

0:02:52.8 Kevin Bales: You grow up in rural Oklahoma or in a small town in Oklahoma, you tend to fly away somewhere, and I went away... [chuckle] I went away to graduate school at Vanderbilt and other places, but then ended up on a research project as a grad student in London and fell in love with living in London and stayed on and have made the rest of my career here.

0:03:14.5 Cindy Moehring: Oh wow, that's really interesting. And for those of you who may be wondering, the island of Guernsey, yes, is in fact where the Guernsey cow comes from, so if you know anything about cows and guernseys, now you've got another connection in to someone who lives there.

0:03:29.4 Kevin Bales: It is illegal to bring any other type of cow onto the island, because we are the pure breed of the original Guernsey cow.

0:03:38.7 Cindy Moehring: How interesting is that? Alright, well, let's now turn to the topic of ESG and all things environment, social and governments, and the role that is now playing in the lives of organisations, corporations, that may have sort of sidelined the issue, but now seems to be sort of front and centre. You've spent your career really focused on an aspect of it that falls pretty squarely, and I would call it the social part of ESG and modern slavery, but for those in the audience who may not be familiar with that term, could you just tell us a bit about what that really means, what the current situation looks like when it comes to modern slavery?

0:04:28.0 Kevin Bales: Sure. And you know, one of the things that particularly Americans have is a picture in their mind of what slavery should look like, and they think about Africans being brought over in chains and working in plantations, or they may be thinking about women who have been... Again, brought from other countries and may be forced into commercial or sexual exploitation, forced into prostitution in the United States. But I think the important thing to understand is that slavery is in many ways unchanged throughout most of human history. So we still have people making bricks with their hands the way they do in the Old Testament, when the Jews do it in Egypt. We have people digging and mining and all around the world and being agricultural workers as they did in the Deep South before the Civil War, and on and on. So if you can imagine almost any form of slavery, you can imagine a current form of slavery. And then you can bring all of that also rapidly in a flashy way into the present moment, because of course, with all the technologies like the one that we're using right now, to talk across thousands of miles, you can use this to exploit people into slavery. So I have a researcher, for example, who works simply on how are children exploited in slavery online, which is a hook for protection, and one of those things we have to figure out.

0:05:52.3 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, so technology actually being used for bad purposes, and if you're all about the privacy aspects of it for individuals, but this is another angle on how technology can actually be used in a bad way, so all the more reasons to try to eradicate that. Does it exist everywhere, Kevin? I think a lot of people have this idea that it's... We got rid of slavery long ago, at least in the US, maybe in developing countries it's there, but where does modern-day slavery exist today?

0:06:23.1 Kevin Bales: Everywhere. When I first began to work in this space, I thought, "Well, surely it won't be here or it won't be there." And I remember actually standing up and saying, "As far as I can tell, it's definitely not in Iceland," and someone in the audience put their hand up and said, "I'm a member of the Icelandic parliament, and we have it too."

0:06:39.1 Cindy Moehring: Wow.

0:06:39.1 Kevin Bales: I thought, "Okay, well if in Iceland, it's an incredibly civilised and law-abiding place, which is small and in the North Atlantic," but in fact, we can't find a country in the world without slavery, and that's where the Global Slavery Index has been very important to do all of that research. There are a few tiny spaces and usually islands where you can be pretty sure that there isn't. On this island that I live on with 61,000 people, we don't know. Although, I have had some of the police come and chat with me about cases that have come to the border, as it were, that they were very suspicious of and weren't quite sure how to handle because they hadn't had many of those.

0:07:21.7 Cindy Moehring: How interesting. How has COVID affected modern day slavery? Have you had a chance yet to do any research into that about 18 months into COVID? And I know that's not a lot of time and it's still unfolding literally before our eyes, but...

0:07:39.3 Kevin Bales: I haven't done a lot personally, but in our lab, we've had actually several commissions to carry out work in that area. And on the Rights Lab websites, I think there are new reports coming out about COVID. But the fundamental is this, in some countries... Well, in virtually all countries, COVID has made people vulnerable. It's created situations where they've lost their work, it's created situations where they're sometimes displaced from where they would normally be.

0:08:09.2 Cindy Moehring: Right.

0:08:11.3 Kevin Bales: Those vulnerabilities are ones that exploiters who want to enslave people are very happy to take advantage of. In India, for example, one of the governmental responses to COVID was to tell all migrant workers to go home immediately, which basically meant that they spread COVID very rapidly over the whole country. And then when those migrant workers got home, the state governments in India said, "We're going to suspend labour rights laws." In other words, the laws that have to do with minimum wages and protections and safety at work are all suspended now, to try to push the economy forward. I mean, it's kind of a sick notion, that you would make it harsher on workers in order to somehow improve the economic performance of a country, but they did just that. So they basically both dislocated people, knocked them out of their work and then stripped them of their rights. So you can... As you can imagine, it led to tremendous vulnerability and exploitation.

0:09:12.5 Cindy Moehring: Well sure, yeah, with no minimum wage laws or anything else, now it's, you not only could be working for pennies if you were working and got displaced from your job and had other bills to pay, then some individuals may find themselves in a position of needing a job and taking one from somebody who says, "Oh, I promise that I will pay you, but first you're gonna have to work for a year and then pay me, for example, your room and board, and then after that, maybe then I'll start paying you some money so you can pay off your other debts, but I don't have to pay you any certain minimum wage anymore. I can pay you pennies." That sounds like it's exacerbated it.

0:10:00.0 Kevin Bales: I was talking to a researcher in South Asia a couple of days ago, and they said, well, the classic story here is about women who've been working in textile production, and a lot of those clothes are for export into the United States and Europe and so forth. But they were saying they had been so knocked about by COVID and by the regulations, that they were showing up to people that had exploited them in the past in bad working conditions and low wages and saying, "If you can just feed us, we'll work." If you're only feeding them and you can exert control over them at that point and use violence to maintain that control, we're into slavery then.

0:10:40.1 Cindy Moehring: Yeah. We're gonna have to really watch how this unfolds, I would say, in the next several years after COVID. And almost feels like on this topic, we've, instead of taking a step forward, COVID has caused us to take a step backwards. Which I think raises the importance then, if you will, on corporations who are trying to get the engine going again for global trade. And we all know that the supply chain is a bit chunky right now, just as it is, just with getting products. And if you layer this issue on top, where companies may have had good auditing programs, and were trying to audit their factories and other places to make sure that they weren't having any modern-day slavery in their supply chains, this probably adds a layer of complexity to it that maybe they hadn't considered before. So what do you think the impact is on the economy of modern-day slavery? And is it continuing to increase, given what we just talked about with COVID?

0:11:38.3 Kevin Bales: We don't know the answer to whether or not it's increasing. I think it's probably knocked some situations sideways, but the thing that I know from studying the criminals who enslave people across all different parts of the economic sectors, is that they are so highly adaptable. Criminals are really responsive to market change.

0:11:58.6 Cindy Moehring: They are.

0:12:01.2 Kevin Bales: They tend to keep a lot of cash around, they keep a lot of vehicles around, in case they need to move fast. It's not unlike what happens with natural disasters like hurricanes or tsunamis. Criminals, they don't rush into those places and begin plucking up victims the way some people think they do. But what they do do is adapt very quickly to the new changed situation. For example, what happened in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. There was a good amount of, I think and local law enforcement did too, of enslavement into commercial sexual exploitation in the tourist trade in New Orleans. The hurricane comes through there and knocks the whole city to pieces.

0:12:45.6 Kevin Bales: Criminals who are running all that have no more use for women that they have enslaved to sell for sex, but very quickly they realise, "We need to start enslaving people to do clearance work, taking out asbestos, rewiring, deconstruction, reconstruction." And suddenly there's a whole lot of workers from India, workers from Central America and so forth, who are caught up in slavery in New Orleans rebuilding and de-building, as it were, all the wrecked and crushed places. And it was just like that. They were so quick about it.

0:13:21.4 Cindy Moehring: Yeah. Wow. So let's jump now from this topic of modern day slavery and this aha moment that you had a few years ago when you was sort of having this idea that it was somehow connected to the environment perhaps as well. So, walk us through that journey, which I think is really, really important for the audience to understand, because companies these days, when it comes to ESG, are not only having to audit, they've gotta figure out how are we gonna report out on areas that are material to us, and all three areas environment, social and governance. So while they may have had a good auditing program for forced labour, now they've gotta figure out what they're gonna say about the environment. So let's just start with talking about how did you see those two connecting?

0:14:10.6 Kevin Bales: It was a surprise to me in many ways, in that, I had worked for a number of years just trying to understand what modern slavery was about, 'cause we didn't know... Back in, at the beginning of the thousands, of 2000, people... We didn't really have a handle on what it was and where it was. So I went out looking for that, and one of the things I would do and I did that, of course, was take a lot of pictures, do a lot of interviews, try to meet people in slavery and so forth. It was later when I would get back and be analyzing and working through this... One of the first things I noticed was that almost everywhere I had taken a picture of where people were being held and working in slavery, the environment around them was trashed, destroyed, often just completely denuded, and I would think, "Wow, that's terrible." And then it took me a little while to realise it was happening almost every place I went, especially in the developing world. That wherever there was slavery that was out of doors, the out of doors were completely devastated. So then I talked to some environmentalists who were very concerned about it, and they also said, "Oh, maybe it is the slavery," and I was saying, "Oh, maybe it is the environmental thing."

0:15:19.6 Kevin Bales: So we had this kind of work like that, and then I set out to actually see if that link could be demonstrated. And when I did that, and I went back into the field, back into the gold mines, the illegal gold mines in Ghana where they used slave labour or the illegal mines that armed groups have in Eastern Congo where they're digging all the minerals that we have in our laptops and our cellphones, or where they were doing fish and shrimp processing in camps, enslaved children in Bangladesh. And I located these places, went to them as best I could, got up close and personal, and every place I went, I was able to see, "Wow, this is a wrecked ecosystem," and a lot of these... And note, every place I just mentioned was actually occurring within a protected national forest, or in a UNESCO World Heritage site. So this wasn't just, there was some land, we went out and raped it, it was we went into those places which are special places, to protect nature and protect endangered species, and that's where they really did the wreckage. And once I got that sorted in my head and saw it first-hand, I was also able to begin researching on how many places are like this around the world.

0:16:42.9 Kevin Bales: And doing the research that ultimately led to that shocking factoid that I couldn't even believe it when I first calculated it, which was that slavery... The work done by people in modern slavery was producing more CO2 into the air than any other country in the world, except China and the United States.

0:17:04.9 Cindy Moehring: Oh my! Wait, is that when you combine it all together?

0:17:08.6 Kevin Bales: Yeah, if you combine it together. So if you take particularly slave-based deforestation, slave-based brick-making, slave-based a bunch of other things, you add it all together and it adds up to more CO2 than any individual country, except China and the United States.

0:17:27.8 Cindy Moehring: So how have we arrived at this place in 2021, and we're just now waking up, if you will, to this connection between the two? How come that wasn't something that companies knew about before and were kind of paying attention to? Or do you think they... How do you explain that?

0:17:50.7 Kevin Bales: Well, sometimes you don't... That's a good one. That's a good question about how that happens because I think there's a lot of things that in life, that all of us, it's like we don't know it until we know it and then when we know it, we feel like we've been slapped in our face, right?

0:18:06.0 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, yeah, it's one of those. Exactly.

0:18:09.3 Kevin Bales: It's one of those. And there was a moment that I did some consulting work years ago for Martin Guitars. Now I don't know if you know Martin Guitars but they're the most famous of the American guitar companies, it's a family business, they make the best guitars, that's who all the rockstars play. They were concerned about this and talked to me because they said, our whole generational family business relies on rare hard woods from special jungles, and we're seeing this destruction, and we helped them with their supply chain and talked to them about that, and they would actually be planting special trees in special areas for harvesting in 200 years.

0:18:48.3 Cindy Moehring: Oh my goodness. Wow.

0:18:49.8 Kevin Bales: That's the way... I mean, these are true artisans, right? Which is why they make the best guitars in the world.

0:18:54.2 Cindy Moehring: Right. [chuckle]

0:18:55.8 Kevin Bales: But, I mean, why I didn't wake up at that moment? I don't know. That should have been a hint too. Maybe it was one of those little layers that came out and took me over the top.

0:19:05.7 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, yeah. So do you have some thoughts on how companies who are now trying to both audit but also report out on things like aspects of the environment where could be material to their business. Any hints or things that you think that companies should be looking at more to first, aha, have the aha moment, understand what the connection might be, and then how to go about changing that?

0:19:38.5 Kevin Bales: Well, I mean, first is just to say, be aware that these things do come together. So if you might have an environmental problem, it might be a slavery problem, and if you might have a slavery problem, it might also be an environmental problem. But that said, I have to admit and also say that as I actually documented in really gritty detail in that book is that, a number of these supply chains, because they are... The root is in slave labour, means that there are a lot of people at the ground level who do their best to conceal it. So that you look at things like the minerals that are in our cell phones, and you say, "Well, how do I know that that's clean?" Well, you can trace that supply chain back, it's got more than 20 links.

0:20:24.4 Kevin Bales: But you can trace it back, and trace it back and you'll get to these people who are processing the minerals and they'll say, "No, this is clean, we got it from this place," and they'll say, "And here's a certificate says we got it from that place." But if you poke and push a little bit further, you'll find counterfeit certificates, you'll find, in a sense, mineral laundering, where they'll be mining it in the Congo, but then sneaking it across the border into Rwanda. It's very interesting, coltan is one of those minerals, and Rwanda is one of the world's largest exporters of coltan, but it has no coltan within its actual boundaries or borders. So it's coming from somewhere, and where it's coming from is across the border in the Congo. So what I'm saying is, you have to be willing to dig hard, and it's hard when a business space is up to that, you have to say, "This could cost money and this could take time."

0:21:25.2 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, that's just I was gonna say, it's money, it's time, it's resources, it's going all the way back through, like you said, sometimes it's 20, sometimes more steps. And where responsibility in the past, and resources may have allowed companies to go one or two steps back, going from two to 20 is... That's really huge.

0:21:46.5 Kevin Bales: But I think there's an answer to that. And that is, and I think we've seen the success of the answer, which is, it's one of those moments where you have to kind of take a deep breath and reach out to your competitors, and say, "Guys, let's get together on this." That worked incredibly well with cocoa and chocolate. I was part of the group that founded the original International Cocoa Initiative, when all the major chocolate companies got together, with a little prompting, almost like a shotgun wedding, to tell the truth, [laughter] from some US Senators, they didn't have much of a choice. But they agreed that they would form a group to look at the cocoa supply chain together, and they would together bankroll the work necessary to improve and collect the information, and actually remedy the situation on the ground. And they've done just that, they're always being picked on by some groups that...

0:22:49.6 Kevin Bales: Sadly, I think NGOs that say, "Oh, if I talk about chocolate and babies and Valentine's Day and Easter bunnies, I can really make a splash," but the truth is, the chocolate companies have poured more money into fixing that supply chain than... Per capita, proportionally, I think, than anybody else. And they've done a good job, 'cause I've been on the ground where they used to have slavery in parts of Ghana and the Ivory Coast, and now, no. Now there's still some there, and they're still working on it, but they're still working on it, and they're still working on it as a group. Likewise, a lot of the major electronics groups, and I'm trying to remember the name of their coalition organisation. But all the big ones, Apple and everybody else, they all belong to a group that works on those conflict minerals and slave-based minerals that go into electronics, and they've made some real progress on it, but you have to... Reaching out and getting into bed, as it were, or maybe just in the same sitting room with your competitors, is tricky enough.

0:23:51.2 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, it is, but recognising that there are some issues, quite frankly, where, say, the institution of business as an institution needs to lead, and that that modern-day slavery, if you will, and damage to the environment isn't something that should be considered a competitive secret, but something that we all as humans have a joint interest in improving, is an important step to take, I think, on these larger issues that go beyond competing on what products you sell.

0:24:23.7 Kevin Bales: Another key part to this has to do with, when you have those regulations or laws or agreements that get people to look at their own supply chains, and then publish a report, like the California Transparency Law, which we brought into the UK and made it the national law. In the UK, that we have a transparency law that says all companies above a certain size have to talk about exactly what they're doing to prevent slavery in their supply chains. The reason why that's important is because before there was any law, like the California law, before there were any transparency laws, any company that tended to put their head above the parapet and say, "You know what, we hate to tell you this, but we've been looking hard and turns out there's slavery in our supply chain," they would just get crucified.

0:25:11.1 Cindy Moehring: Well, sure, yeah, yeah.

0:25:13.7 Kevin Bales: As opposed to... You would hope people would say, "Finally a company and they're being honest about their problems, and they wanna make it clear and they wanna show that they're working on it like that." No, it was like, didn't roll, just... [chuckle] But if you spread it, if you spread it as a requirement across all companies, or you share it within your coalition of companies for whatever your supply chain is, you can take away that fear. Or at least a lot of that fear.

0:25:42.7 Cindy Moehring: A lot of it, and of course, I think there's... You always have to get some of the legal liability as well and other things that other company... That companies may face for them, and they have to weigh the balance of all of that. But you're right, what we should be after is transparency and authenticity and trying to get better, recognise where we are on a journey as a human race on this issue, and get better as we tend to fight it. But I wanna go back to something you said about the 20 links in the chain, and bring technology into this conversation and talk about the Rights Lab for a few minutes here. So when you think about a supply chain and going all the way back, and you are mentioning some fabricated documentation, it would seem to me that as we go from two steps to 20, and trying to have companies look further back, that technology could really be our friend here, with things like, I don't know, blockchain or other forms of technology to help. Tell me a little bit about the Rights Lab, that you're a research director at, and how you see technology, perhaps, helping in this space.

0:26:45.1 Kevin Bales: Sure. Well, the Rights Lab is about 100 researchers all together in a big physical space, though we're all dispersed now because of COVID and like that, and we're all working on modern slavery all the time. But the key thing here is that we're also divided into a number of teams. Some are much more concerned with technology than others, so there's a community all about local communities team, and so forth. But we have one team which is all about both the environment and about earth observation, and we have a... It's basically... I think of it as the satellites team, because one of the key things that we've been making breakthroughs with lately is using satellite imagery, which now companies are sharing with us 'cause they kinda, the big satellite companies are just giving us their pictures because they're so excited about the fact that we can crack some of the problems that are allowing us to. For example, using a type of ground penetrating camera from a satellite in parts of Tanzania, we were able to show where there was illegal mining going on in the suburbs of a city and where the slavery was most likely to be happening because it was showing that the earth itself wasn't as sound as it should have been. Does that make sense? It's hard, I now it's kinda...

0:28:11.1 Cindy Moehring: I think. Say that one more time.

0:28:12.9 Kevin Bales: Well, it's like a ground penetrating radar.

0:28:16.6 Cindy Moehring: Got it, okay. Yes.

0:28:18.6 Kevin Bales: And they could say... And there was like were there... Are they... Where is this? How is this possible? These were not... You couldn't see these things, but you could. Or for example, we just had a big report published about work that we've done with the government of Greece. And we used satellite imagery of tomato fields, which were using refugees, the workers were basically refugees from Syria who should have been being taken care of, but in fact they'd been caught up and enslaved to do this agricultural work, but we could see that the densities of these workers and the way that they were being spread in the fields was not like it would be with a normal work crew. It's not like that. I mean, almost anywhere you can find significant amounts of work going on on the ground using satellite imagery where there should be equipment, but there's no equipment, like mining. Mines should have big trucks and big diggers and all this kind of stuff and if you've got places where all that's happening, but it's all being done by hand, that's almost always going to be slave labour.

0:29:28.2 Cindy Moehring: That's a clue. Yeah, that's a clue and that's how technology can be used for good with those satellite images. I'm sure that helps when everything's outside, probably not so much if you're talking about inside a building or inside a factory.

0:29:40.9 Kevin Bales: Now we're almost into that space that I can barely explain because my colleagues are so far ahead of me, but...

0:29:45.6 Cindy Moehring: Wow.

0:29:45.9 Kevin Bales: There is that thing that we don't have artificial intelligence, 'cause that doesn't actually exist yet. There's no such thing. There is this thing called machine learning, it does exist, which is about the machine is able to work through a whole bunch of different scenarios and begin to figure out stuff that you can't see yourself. We've been using that, for example, in another country in Africa, where we know in these big slum cities, there are patterns of slavery going on, but we're collecting data and we're collecting even things like we've got access to cell phone data, so we can see how much money is being transferred from phone to phone to location to location, and then link that to crime rates and to people who are working at weird hours and crowding and people without tools. And then also we send people in to just do surveys on the ground that we then layer with all of this stuff and let the machine learning, go through all that data and they say, okay, so, well, the machine does. If you're wanting to really crack this, go to this place, not that place.

0:30:55.1 Cindy Moehring: How interesting. That might be a huge technological advancement in terms of...

0:31:00.6 Kevin Bales: How great is this thing?

0:31:02.4 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, I know, I know, but the fact that there is a Rights Lab with a group of people that are working in that space is certainly encouraging. So that's really good to hear.

0:31:14.6 Kevin Bales: It makes me excited. I have to say. I love working with these guys. Yeah.

0:31:16.5 Cindy Moehring: Yeah, that's fantastic. Well, Kevin, this has been just a very illuminating conversation. Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us in this space, and I always like to leave on one last question, which is, if there's somebody in the audience who's listening to all of this and wants to learn a little bit more about ESG, modern day slavery, how all of that may tie together, do you have some good resources that you could recommend, either books or documentaries, podcasts, anything?

0:31:48.7 Kevin Bales: Well, funny you should ask. You think I'm about to mention my own book, but I'm not, because what I did just before we got together was I emailed to Halle an article that's just come out, it's open access, and it's all about almost everything that we've just talked about, but it's a short, tight article.

0:32:08.6 Cindy Moehring: That's great. That's great. Okay, well, we'll be sure to post that in the show notes so that everybody has a chance to read that and they can deepen their knowledge there, and I'm sure that'll take them off in a number of different directions. Kevin, this has just been fascinating, and it's just wonderful to be able to talk to somebody via technology who's across the ocean on an island in Guernsey, but lo and behold started right out here in a local space from Ponca City, Oklahoma. So thank you so, so much.

0:32:34.3 Kevin Bales: My pleasure, looking forward to when I get over there when I can.

0:32:38.0 Cindy Moehring: I agree, it was great to connect with you. Thanks, Kevin.

0:32:41.1 Kevin Bales: You bet. Bye.

0:32:41.4 Cindy Moehring: Bye-bye.


Matt WallerCindy Moehring is the founder and executive chair of the Business Integrity Leadership Initiative at the Sam M. Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas. She recently retired from Walmart after 20 years, where she served as senior vice president, Global Chief Ethics Officer, and senior vice president, U.S. Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer.

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