You see it: The need for corporate philanthropy is skyrocketing. Worthy, urgent causes appear literally overnight. And enterprises like yours are responding in a big way, generating positive impact for a host of beneficiaries via grantmaking, employee donations and volunteer programs.
But today it’s no longer enough to simply put programs in place and then to contribute “XX” number of dollars or “XX” volunteer hours. We must direct dollars and resources strategically to where they’ll do the most good, and in a way that aligns with your organization’s missions and values
How do you do it? By achieving Agile Social Impact. Tightly align your philanthropy efforts with your corporate objectives, respond faster when the need is greatest, and maximize the impact of your donations.
In his teen years, Kenneth Martinez would often drive home after school, pull into his driveway, and see a familiar sight next door: His elderly neighbor, sitting in the shade of an old tree, waving at him.
He’d usually chat with the kindly gentleman, talk about their suburban Los Angeles neighborhood, and share a few laughs. The neighbor and his always-friendly wife were like extended family, and Martinez and his dad often helped them with their household needs.
Today, the couple’s old home is full of new electrical outlets, fire detectors, and other repairs or upgrades — courtesy of Martinez and his father.
Earlier this year, when the neighbor’s widow and daughter offered to sell the house to Martinez and his sister, Leah, they jumped at the opportunity to become first-time homeowners.
“The main reason my sister and I felt so comfortable getting that house is we knew it had been so well maintained,” said Martinez, 29, now a welder at an aerospace plant. “My dad actually did most of the work. I just helped. We’re a close family, and I always knew I wanted to live near my folks. I guess you can’t get closer than this. We’re next-door neighbors now.”
By Jane Black
One June day in 2014, Beth Robertson-Martin found herself standing on a dirt road dividing two California tomato fields. On one side sat a farm that was nothing more than a 300-acre carpet of dried-out dirt. "It looked like a scene from Mad Max," she remembers. "Everything was dead." On the other side was a 6-foot-tall hedgerow, a tangle of white-blossomed milkweed, sunflowers and elderberry bushes that General Mills had planted alongside the tomatoes to create a habitat for bees, butterflies and other pollinators.
"That was the moment I knew this was what I was meant to do for the rest of my life," says Robertson-Martin, who works with farmers and other suppliers to source organic, sustainable ingredients for GM's brands, including Cascadian Farm, Muir Glen and Lärabar. "It wasn't just the vast field of tomatoes and that the flowers were blooming and gorgeous. I could hear the difference—the birds, the bees."
Her passion, approachability and disarming honesty are key traits that have made her such a successful advocate. On her watch, General Mills has invested more than $6 million to create and restore pollinator habitats on 73,000 acres of its suppliers' farms. She also helped spearhead a partnership with the Xerces Society and the University of Minnesota Bee Lab to contribute a total of $4 million to help farmers plant another 100,000 acres of bee-friendly habitat across the country by 2021. These initiatives make the Minneapolis-based company the biggest contributor to pollinator health in the U.S.
By Arturo Juárez
Timo Schmidt-Eisenhart is, since 2013, the president of Timberland for Emea (Europe, the Middle East and Africa). The German executive also worked for another brand of VF Corporation, The North Face, where he was the general manager of the brand for Europe for three years. His career, however, began in the US giant Nike, where he was in charge of different sales executive departments for seven years. Schmidt-Eisenhart has spoken about issues that affect fashion and the future of the sector at the inauguration of the new VF Corporation building in the heart of the city of London.
Mohawk Industries creates quality flooring for homes and businesses around the globe. The company’s roots are firmly planted in American soil, with its brands dating back more than a century. Mohawk’s extraordinary growth over the past three decades results from the talent, integrity and dedication of its people. Yesterday, to honor its employees and celebrate its unique American heritage, Mohawk hosted a special American flag raising ceremony.
“We are proud to be an American company, and we are inspired by the ingenuity and commitment of our exceptional people,” said Jeff Lorberbaum, Mohawk Industries’ chairman and chief executive officer. “Our competitive edge comes from more than 20,000 U.S. employees who make, sell and deliver our products, with about half of those working in Georgia. Hundreds are veterans who nobly served our country, which makes this flag especially poignant as a means of expressing our appreciation to our employees.”
The flag is the largest in Georgia, measuring 45 feet high by 75 feet wide and weighing over 150 pounds. Towering from a 130-foot pole on the company’s Union Grove campus, the flag will be a landmark for drivers along I-75, one of the nation’s most heavily trafficked highways. In addition to Union Grove, Mohawk operates a network of more than 30 manufacturing, distribution and administrative facilities across Georgia, creating thousands of jobs and providing a substantial economic impact in each community.
Imagine dumping one garbage truck filled with plastic material into the ocean every minute. Now imagine two trucks per minute. Now four. Visualizing this makes my stomach turn, yet each year at least 8 million tonnes (about 1 truck load/minute) of plastics enter our ocean. It’s estimated that if no action is taken, by 2030 that number will double. By 2050, it will quadruple.
Plastic pollution is a relatively new challenge, yet its accelerated growth is staggering. The world has produced as much plastic since 2000 as in all the preceding years combined—and a third of it is leaked into nature. Once plastic enters the ocean, it’s incredibly difficult to remove. Plastic materials break down to create microplastics, which are then ingested by marine life and ultimately by humans. In fact, a new report commissioned by WWF estimates that, on average, people consume the equivalent weight of one plastic credit card per week.
Now here’s the positive news: plastic pollution is a problem that we, as people and businesses, have the power to solve. Plastic plays an essential role in our society and economy, and it’s up to us to manage it responsibly so it retains its value and remains in circulation.
National Grid will show their unwavering commitment to inclusion and diversity, and the LGBTQIA community, as a sponsor of WorldPride 2019. The WorldPride 2019 celebration in New York City also marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, a series of demonstrations that sparked a fight for LGBTQIA rights in the United States. On June 30, hundreds of National Grid employees will march in the Pride parade that attracts 3 million people.
Employees will walk alongside a National Grid electric vehicle as part of an effort to increase awareness and adoption of electric vehicles. This is part of a larger goal to reduce carbon emissions by 80% below 1990 levels by the year 2050 with the states they serve: Massachusetts, New York, and Rhode Island. National Grid believes building a diverse and inclusive workforce is the right thing to do and the only way forward to an innovative, clean energy future.
Congratulations to Freeport-McMoRan for being named one of 2019 America's Best Large Employers! The list, by Forbes magazine and Statista, ranked Freeport-McMoRan as No. 2 in Arizona and 143 overall.
The results were derived from a series of online surveys of more than 50,000 U.S. employees in 25 different industries. To see the full list of America’s Best Large Employers 2019, visit Forbes.com.
Amid a round of recent news about the increasing problem of homelessness in America, Jon Campbell appeared before a standing room-only audience of affordable housing advocates to call for renewed efforts to address the crisis.
“I think the headline for all of this should be, ‘America can’t afford unaffordable housing,’” he said, as the crowd applauded. “I really believe that’s the headline. And if we can all take that mantra forward from this place, we’re really going to make progress.”
Campbell, Wells Fargo’s head of philanthropy, led the panel on affordable housing June 4 at the 2019 Social Innovation Summit in Los Angeles. The two-day conference brought together nonprofit leaders, corporate executives, government officials, philanthropists, activists, and other leaders to explore new ways of effecting social change.
Youth mentorship has been given a tremendous boost thanks to a transformational $3.1 million donation by Scotiabank to Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada.
Hundreds of thousands of young people across Canada are growing up in vulnerable situations including poverty, family instability, or identity-based discrimination. To add to this, it is estimated that at least 15,000 young people are waiting for a Big Brothers Big Sisters mentor. This donation will enable life-changing mentoring relationships that ignite youth potential through guidance, support and role modeling.
"The presence of one caring adult can make all the difference in a young person's life," says W. Matthew Chater, National President & CEO, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada. "Research shows that one-to-one mentoring has a Social Return on Investment* of $23-to-1 when it comes to the long-term economic, health, and social outcomes for youth in the most vulnerable situations. With this proven intervention, Scotiabank's donation will have an extraordinary impact on young Canadians."
Paul Bowen, Water and Waste Water Technology expert for the Coca-Cola Company and one of our original founding members of BIER catches up with Margaret Uttke, Communications Director for the Beverage Industry Environmental Roundtable, to recap the recent spring roundtable meeting hosted by HEINEKEN on May 8 through 10 at their facilities in Amsterdam.
As we approach Summer 2019, 2018 feels distant. With hindsight comes clarity, making now a great time to look back at the biggest trends and insights that defined the corporate social investment space last year.
Chief Executives for Corporate Purpose (CECP) launched Investing in Society last year with one overarching goal: to compile the industry's biggest trends and insights into one semiannual report. Developed from CECP’s original research, thought leadership, findings from the Giving in Numbers: 2018 Edition, thousands of discussions with more than 200 of the world’s largest companies, and engagement with leading experts and practitioners, Investing in Society is a 360-degree view of the corporate sector’s role in solving some of the world’s most pressing issues.
The all-digital and interactive report covers the five focus areas of Priorities, Performance, People, Planet, and Policies. This insights collection delves into what actions companies are taking to identify and effectively meet stakeholder needs, and how leading companies are striving to build a better world through business.
In 1955, LIFE magazine ran an ad promoting “Throwaway Living,” encouraging the use of disposable items as a way to help cut down on household chores.
We used to depend on plastic, and now, our planet is being suffocated by it. Environmental impacts are showing the need for a more circular economy, and businesses are responding by offering innovation solutions, such as new products, packaging and business models, to address resource scarcity and climate risk – not to mention unlock a $4.5 trillion economic opportunity.
I recently caught up with Brendan Edgerton, the Director of Circular Economy at the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), and EDF Climate Corps alum, about the progress being made toward circular models of design and production – and his love of Swiss chocolate.
In the early 1990s, a group of gay and lesbian employees at P&G in Cincinnati banded together to fight for equality in their workplace. It seemed like an impossible dream—while P&G was one of the first Fortune 500 companies to add “sexual orientation” to its EEO (equal employment opportunity) statement in 1992, the company’s leadership was conservative and fellow employees were openly homophobic. And, in 1993, Cincinnati passed Article XII, an amendment that prevented any laws aimed at protecting gays and lesbians. It was a hostile environment and a difficult time for employees to openly be themselves. Still, the group, which called itself GABLE, persisted.
Metropole Industrial Co. Ltd., an innovative leader of the HVAC industry, is the company behind Taiwan’s first WELL Certified interiors project at the Gold level. Their new 6,867 sq ft (638 sq m) head office in Neihu District, Taipei City was designed to advance wellness throughout the workspace.
“The Metropole Head Office project is a true testament of leading by example,” said Rick Fedrizzi, Chairman and CEO of the International WELL Building Institute™. “Metropole’s project team left no doubt that prioritizing employees’ health and well-being leads to a reward that warrants all efforts.”
Metropole’s office earned WELL Certification in September 2018 following their achievement of LEED Platinum.
The word “epic” is often used to describe something historically important, lasting and complex. However, when VMware CEO, Pat Gelsinger uses the adjective, he is also describing his over 24,000 employees and the collective mission they’re working for. Ironically, this is the word that his employees use to describe his leadership as well.
It’s no surprise, then, that Gelsinger has received a 99-percent approval rating and has been named the #1 Top CEO in 2019 among U.S. large companies. As a first-time #1 winner, jumping 77 spots from last year, Gelsinger has admittedly overcome a trying year — swooning stock prices, aggressive talent poaching and changing company structure — thanks, in part, to investing in company culture and keeping innovation front of mind.
The sold-out sixth annual Women in Entertainment Luncheon (Film, TV, Music, Sports, and Fashion), presented by Coca Cola, Barefoot Wine, Los Angeles Chargers, Los Angeles Dodgers, Los Angeles Lakers and City National Bank welcomed more than 250 top female executives in the entertainment industry for an empowering afternoon of networking and discussion on Friday, June 14 at Dignity Health Sports Park.
The event was hosted by AEG’s ASCSC Foundation, National Association of Black Female Executives in Music and Entertainment, Inc. (NABFEME Los Angeles) and Women Helping Women in Entertainment.
“The Women in Entertainment Luncheon provides networking opportunities for female executives and facilitates conversations that address issues and trends affecting women working in the entertainment industry,” said Tamala Lewis, Women in Entertainment Luncheon Founder and AEG’s Dignity Health Sports Park Center Community Affairs and Foundation Senior Director.
Did you know that bee extinction could end life on earth? Without pollination from bees, the world’s food production would be completely compromised and negatively impact the ecosystem, agriculture and food production for humans.
General Mills in Brazil, through its social program, Healthy Children, Healthy Future, in partnership with Instituto Melhores Dias and the NGO SOS Abelhas Sem Ferrão (SOS stingless bees) established educational beehives for schoolchildren in two of our hometown communities (Cambará and Ribeirão Claro) to rescue and provide shelter for four native stingless bee species in Brazil (Jataí, Mandaçaia, Mirim Droryana and Manduri) - the main pollinators of Brazilian wildlife.
Completion of Energy & Water Operations Center (EWOC)
One of the most integral components of the MCAS Miramar microgrid is now operational. Construction is complete for the new Energy and Water Operations Center (EWOC), where the microgrid system will be monitored, controlled and managed. The EWOC provides operators with direct control of integrated microgrid control system, utilizing Schneider Electric’s OASyS SCADA software, as well as other utility and energy control systems.
The EWOC plays host to all energy control systems and activities in one centralized space within the Public Works Department that includes the following functions:
It's been said that Texas suffers perennial drought, broken up by severe floods from time to time. These days, however, Texas isn't alone in its misery.
Researchers from Climate Central analyzed 65 years of rainfall records in the United States and found that 40 of the lower 48 states have seen an increase in heavy downpours since 1950. We're talking about the kind of flood-making torrential events that exceed the top 1 percent of all rain and snow days. And droughts are frequent, too. During the second half of 2012, more than half of the land area in the United States suffered from a drought ranked moderate or worse.