Letter from the ceo: Thoughts ahead of the 2020 U.S. election

A letter to Starbucks partners from Kevin Johnson, Starbucks ceo and president


For nearly 50 years, Starbucks has inspired and nurtured the human spirit – one person, one cup, and one neighborhood at a time. We are purpose-driven and demonstrate our values each day as we work to create a warm and welcoming experience for customers in our stores.

With a historic U.S. election upon us, I am reminded that it is our shared Mission and Values that unite us at Starbucks with over 400,000 partners around the world proudly wearing the green apron representing all perspectives, genders, races, religions and personal political views.

It is the moments of connection we have with one another and our customers in our stores that define the Starbucks Experience. And, as many will look to Starbucks as a place of familiarity and respite in the days ahead, I want to share with you a few things top of mind for me.

First, we will remain steadfast in our commitment to ensuring our stores provide that warm and welcoming Third Place, free of disruptive, intolerant and discriminatory behavior, and encourage us all to demonstrate respect for another’s differences, experiences and emotions with kindness and support. We will focus on the safety of our partners and customers above all else.

Second, building on our long legacy of encouraging our partners to use their voice and vote, we have joined Civic Alliance as well as hundreds of companies this year to advocate for a safe and accessible election. Every voice will be heard, and I have great confidence in the integrity of our election process.

Finally, this election is certainly an important one and will likely require patience as all votes are counted. The results may not be known overnight. If this is the case, I encourage you to trust in the process and be patient.

For tomorrow, after your ballot is in, make a French Press of your favorite coffee and sip slowly – knowing the election process will work and it may take some time. Regardless of the outcome, or how long it will take to get there, one thing is certain: We will continue to live up to our values and stand united to leave a positive imprint on the communities we serve.

Thank you for continuing to uplift one another and those you serve. You are ALL the heartbeat of Starbucks. I am proud to be your partner.